By David Clark, Nicholas Perkins
`An very good collection... breaks new floor in lots of components. may still make a considerable effect at the dialogue of the modern impression of Anglo-Saxon Culture'. Conor McCarthy, writer of Seamus Heaney and the Medieval mind's eye Britain's pre-Conquest previous and its tradition maintains to fascinate smooth writers and artists. From Henry Sweet's Anglo-Saxon Reader to Seamus Heaney's Beowulf, and from excessive modernism to the musclebound heroes of comedian booklet and Hollywood, Anglo-Saxon England has been a strong and infrequently unforeseen resource of concept, antagonism, and mirrored image. The essays the following interact with the ways that the Anglo-Saxons and their literature were acquired, faced, and re-envisioned within the smooth mind's eye. they give clean insights on proven figures, akin to W.H. Auden, J.R.R. Tolkien, and David Jones, and on modern writers resembling Geoffrey Hill, Peter examining, P.D. James, and Heaney. They discover the interplay among textual content, photo and panorama in medieval and sleek books, the recasting of mythic figures resembling Wayland Smith, and the metamorphosis of Beowulf into Grendel - as a unique and as grand opera. The early medieval emerges no longer as a website of nostalgia or nervousness, in smooth revisions, yet as an alternative offers an important enviornment for creativity, excitement, and inventive test. members: Bernard O'Donoghue, Chris Jones, Mark Atherton, Maria Artamonova, Anna Johnson, Clare A. Lees, Sian Echard, Catherine A.M. Clarke, Maria Sachiko Cecire, Allen J. Frantzen, John Halbrooks, Hannah J. Crawforth, Joshua Davies, Rebecca Anne Barr
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Additional info for Anglo-Saxon Culture and the Modern Imagination (Medievalism)
2010 15:27 Priming the Poets 35 Sweet was not averse to seeing echoes of lost poems in some of the earlier annals of the Chronicle, for instance the annal for 473 (retaining Sweet’s presentation of the text) : Hér Hęngest and Æsc gef·uhton wiþ Wealas, and gen·ámon un-árímedlicu hęre-réaf, and þá Wealas flugon þá Ęngle swá swá fýr. Here Hengest and Æsc fought against the Welsh and seized immeasurable plunder, and the Welsh fled the English like fire. 19 In short, then, the opening words of the first chapter of the 1876 Reader are highly revealing, and with hindsight we can detect many of the ideological, cultural and intellectual factors involved in the original conception and compilation of the Reader.
Davis, ‘Redundant Ethnogenesis in Beowulf ’, The Heroic Age 5 (2001), http ://www. html, accessed 30 July 2009. 26 On this aspect of the poem, see Andy Orchard, A Critical Companion to ‘Beowulf ’ (Cambridge, 2003), pp. 203–37. 2010 15:27 From Heorot to Hollywood 21 by the end of the film has sprouted turrets and crenellations) ; and whatever sixthcentury Scandinavian music did sound like, presumably it was not the Greensleevesesque songs which Wealhtheow, played by Robin Wright Penn, sings to the harp.
14 Whitelock’s caution is salutary : ‘it is not enough to show, however convincingly, that the poem fits into a certain historical context, unless one can also show that no other historical context exists into which it could equally well be fitted’. Dorothy Whitelock, The Audience of ‘Beowulf ’ (Oxford, 1951), p. 28. 2010 15:27 From Heorot to Hollywood 17 never going to be a wholly satisfying activity while there is so little consensus over its asterisked moment of birth. In the narrowest sense it seems likely that Beowulf will remain stubbornly undatable.
Anglo-Saxon Culture and the Modern Imagination (Medievalism) by David Clark, Nicholas Perkins