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Course Details

Fall 2010-2011
COM 543  

Topics in Medieval Literature - Rhyme or Reason

Daniel Heller-Roazen

What is rhyme? And does it have a reason? Today we take the association of rhyme with poetry to be self-evident. But in the classical world, rhyme was known above all as an ornament of prose, and it was the troubadours who first made of rhyme a fundamental poetic device. This seminar will seek to understand the implications of this fact through close study of Arnaut Daniel, the troubadour whom Dante's Guinizelli called the "better craftsman of the mother tongue." Topics to be discussed include rhythm, meter, and consonance, ancient precedents to medieval rhyme, rhyme & prose, the linguistics analysis of rhyme, and rhyme across languages.

Sample reading list:
Arnaut Daniel, Poems
Ezra Pound, Arnaut Daniel Translations
Dante Alighieri, On the Eloquence of the Vernacular
Augustine, On Music
Martianus Cappella, The Marriage of Mercury and Philology
Roman Jakobson, Selected Writings
See instructor for complete list

Other Requirements:
Not Open to Freshmen.

Other information:
All works will be read and discussed in translation, but close scrutiny of the original texts will be encouraged wherever possible.

Schedule/Classroom assignment:

Class numberSectionTimeDaysRoomEnrollmentStatus
21569 S01 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm W   East Pyne Building   127   Enrolled:10 Limit:20