Flipping the Archive: Tulane’s Archives and Outreach Program

  Medievalists who use rare books and manuscripts in their research will remember the first time they stepped into a magnificent reading room—the Wren Library at Trinity College, Cambridge, say, or, before the opening of the Weston Library, Bodley’s Duke Humfrey’s Library. The romance of working in such environments, combined

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Desiring Chaucer

  We have long acknowledged the formative role of desire when reading literary texts. Readers never come to texts without their desires—what appear more neutrally in the form of “expectations”—some of which may be completely unrelated to the actual text at hand. But it’s not as if these excessive desires

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Why Chaucer Now?

  A little over a year ago the MLA Leadership raised the desirability of consolidating the MLA Division on Chaucer with two other MLA Divisions, those on Old and Middle English. Facebook was abuzz. Most of us considered this to be among the worst of recent institutional ideas, which, given

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Exhuming the Giant

  Not long ago, in the context of a book on medievalism, I confidently pronounced that in Anglophone culture the novel in its highbrow canonical guise just didn’t work with medieval settings. I was looking back to the 1840s, when Edward Bulwer Lytton seemed the obvious heir to the Walter

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Curious Times

  In his blog post of August 7, 2012 on In the Middle, entitled “Curiosity, Mars/Venus, and Chaucer,” Jonathan Hsy discusses how a medieval understanding of curiosity helps us to think about the art of translation, as well as the role of curiosity and wonder in scholarship and the classroom

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Are you ready for the Apocalypse?

  One evening the model Kate Moss appeared on my television, looked directly at me, and asked if I was “ready for the Apocalips [sic]?”. This appeal turned out to be an advert for a lipstick, a lipstick so chromatically superlative, its strapline claims, that it portends “the end of lip

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