Orality and Performance in Early French Romance Evelyn Birge Vitz

ISBN: 9780859915380

Published: December 31st 1998


328 pages


Orality and Performance in Early French Romance  by  Evelyn Birge Vitz

Orality and Performance in Early French Romance by Evelyn Birge Vitz
December 31st 1998 | Hardcover | PDF, EPUB, FB2, DjVu, talking book, mp3, ZIP | 328 pages | ISBN: 9780859915380 | 9.30 Mb

This book proposes a fundamental revision of the history of early French romance, arguing that oral and performed traditions were far more important in the development of romance than scholars have recognised. It begins by dealing with issues of orality and literacy, and argues that the form in which romances were composed was not the invention of clerics but was, rather, an oral form. It shows how early versions of the Tristan story, by Beroul, Thomas and Marie de France, express the complex interplay between oral and written traditions, then goes on to focus in greater depth on Benoit de Sainte-Maure, Chretien and the anonymous author of the Roman de Thebes.

The second part of the book looks at performance, showing that romances such as those of Chretien invited voiced presentation- moreover, they were frequently recitd from memory, sung, and acted out in dramatic fashion. Romances can, and should, still be performed today. EVELYN BIRGE VITZ is Professor of French and Comparative Literature at New York University.

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