The definitions of theatre and, less specifically, performance, have been in constant flux since theorists set about trying to create them. Oscar Brockett, in his History of the Theatre, opens his text with the statement that performative elements are present in every society, no matter how complex or how unsophisticated the culture may be (Brockett, 1). Human beings are constantly performing: in personal conversation, at large social gatherings, as paid entertainers. Acting, and in a more general sense, performance, is truly a part of an individual's life each and every day, and has been throughout time. Fundamental human behaviors have not changed since civilization developed, including the desire for attention.
[...] Some examples of direct audience address that appear in Erec and Enide are: “Soon you will hear them come to blows” (862) should I give a long account?” (1080) Erec we must speak once more, still situated at the site where he had battled with the knight.” (1238) know about him and can tell his frame was small in every part” (3664-3665) first verse is concluded here” (1796) listen well, and I shall order the kings and counts, each one by name.” (1882-1883) what else ought to be disclosed?” (2001) “Throughout the palace great joy reigned, but I shall spare you what remained.” (2015-2016) Similar quotes from The Knight's Tale include: indeed, if it were not too long to listen to, I would have wanted to tell you fully the way in which the realm of the Amazons was (17-19) may all say so and chiefly may (410) ask this question of you lovers: which has the worse part, Arcite or Palamon? [...]
[...] Continuation: Esays on Medieval French Literature and Language. Birmingham, AL: Summa Publications, Inc Green, D.H. The Beginnings of Medieval Romance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press Guyer, Foster Erwin. Chretien de Troyes: Inventor of the Modern Novel. New York: Bookman Associates Mermier, Guy R. and DuBruck, Edelgard E. (ed.). Courtly Romance: A Collection of Essays. Detroit, MI: Michigan Consortium for Medieval and Early Modern Studies Paxson, James J., Clopper, Lawrence M., and Tomasch, Sylvia (ed.). The Performance of Middle English Culture: Essays on Chaucer and the Drama. [...]
[...] An awareness of the dual nature of these works does not take away from either the author/composers or the works themselves. Rather, such awareness only increases the awe these authors inspire, and allows for a fuller, more complete understanding of the texts, as Chaucer and Chretien intended them to be. WORKS CITED/CONSULTED Akehurst, F.R.P. and Davis, Judith M. (ed.). A Handbook of the Troubadours. Berkely, CA: University of California Press Britnell, Richard (ed.). Daily Life in the Late Middle Ages. Phoenix Mill: Sutton Publishing Bumke,Joachim. Trans. Thomas Dunlap. Courtly Culture: Literature and Society in the High Middle Ages. [...]
[...] Each person did as he was skilled: some leapt, some tumbled, and some sprang their magic tricks or shrilled or sang. Some played the flute, some sounded notes on pipes and vielles and on rotes. The maidens whirled and danced in rounds, all to ensure that joy abounds . That day the minstrels' recompense well pleased them by its affluence: all they had lent was paid in full, their gifts were very beautiful” (Erec, lines 1983-1993, 2055-2058) The minstrels are engaged in a various number of activities; the singing would include lyric poetry and lays as well as longer works such as the verse romances. [...]
[...] This paper would assert, then, that performance played a dual role alongside the literary function of the medieval courtly romances. Scope After making such a broad thesis statement, the scope of this investigation perhaps needs more careful delineation. The term “medieval courtly romances” here is only dealing with some of the major works between 1200 and 1400. The two representative nations are England and France, with primary authors/composers Geoffrey Chaucer and Chretien de Troyes, respectively. Each man is considered a giant of his own time and country; Chretien in 1200 is considered the father of the romance (Guyer, and Chaucer is often pointed to as the predecessor of the modern novel (Kittredge, from Richmond, 179). [...]
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