Brand chaucer: The poet and the nation

Martin Laidlaw

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter focuses on how the works and biography of Brand Chaucer have been interpreted towards criticism of inequality and oppression in our contemporary society. Chaucer’s employment as a viable vehicle for propaganda may be seen in the printed editions of his works that appear in the sixteenth century. This employment of the Caxtonian position places Chaucer among the pantheon of writers such as Ennius and Dante who were viewed to be pivotal in the construction of a national language and identity. Contemporary adaptations of Geoffrey Chaucer can be broadly categorised into two types of medievalism: the use of the characters of Geoffrey Chaucer, and the representation of Geoffrey Chaucer himself. Pier Paolo Pasolini’s I Racconti di Canterbury, unlike Tacit Theatre’s “The Canterbury Tales,” employs the figure of Chaucer as a quasi-narrator, and the character is seen to observe his surroundings, and crucially his fellow pilgrims, while constructing the text that forms the basis of the film.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFrom Medievalism to Early-Modernism
Subtitle of host publicationAdapting the English Past
EditorsMarina Gerzic, Aidan Norrie
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780429683015
ISBN (Print)9781138366572
Publication statusPublished - 20 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameRoutledge Studies in Medieval Literature and Culture


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