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The Subjectivity Effect in Western Literary Tradition: Essays Toward the Release of Shakespeare's Will (review)

The Subjectivity Effect in Western Literary Tradition: Essays Toward the Release of... The Subjectivity Effect in Western Literary Tradition: Essays Toward the Release of Shakespeare's Will (review) James R. Andreas The Comparatist, Volume 16, May 1992, pp. 142-144 (Review) Published by The University of North Carolina Press DOI: https://doi.org/10.1353/com.1992.0001 For additional information about this article https://muse.jhu.edu/article/415073/summary Access provided at 18 Feb 2020 11:12 GMT from JHU Libraries REVIEWS desire." The conclusion? "Chaucer is, pace Auerbach, more strictly the secular poet." No one would really argue with this conclusion, and certainly not Auer- bach. But Taylor's real point is that Chaucer's characteristic ways of writing were developed specifically in reaction to Dante, that the Commedia is the crucial if unacknowledged subtext of Chaucer's greatest poem. Such an argu- ment can of course only be as persuasive as the specific allusions, and unfortunately this reader must report himself to be almost entirely unper- suaded. There are really four problems here, I think. One is simply that the language and narrative structure of the Troilus are only rarely close enough to Dante to invite confident comparison. Consequently, Taylor relies on rather generalized thematic parallels. Hence, for instance, her crucial argu- ment that the Paolo and Francesca episode is central to the eroticizing of the http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Comparatist University of North Carolina Press

The Subjectivity Effect in Western Literary Tradition: Essays Toward the Release of Shakespeare's Will (review)

The Comparatist , Volume 16 – Oct 3, 2012

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © Southern Comparative Literature Association.
ISSN
1559-0887

Abstract

The Subjectivity Effect in Western Literary Tradition: Essays Toward the Release of Shakespeare's Will (review) James R. Andreas The Comparatist, Volume 16, May 1992, pp. 142-144 (Review) Published by The University of North Carolina Press DOI: https://doi.org/10.1353/com.1992.0001 For additional information about this article https://muse.jhu.edu/article/415073/summary Access provided at 18 Feb 2020 11:12 GMT from JHU Libraries REVIEWS desire." The conclusion? "Chaucer is, pace Auerbach, more strictly the secular poet." No one would really argue with this conclusion, and certainly not Auer- bach. But Taylor's real point is that Chaucer's characteristic ways of writing were developed specifically in reaction to Dante, that the Commedia is the crucial if unacknowledged subtext of Chaucer's greatest poem. Such an argu- ment can of course only be as persuasive as the specific allusions, and unfortunately this reader must report himself to be almost entirely unper- suaded. There are really four problems here, I think. One is simply that the language and narrative structure of the Troilus are only rarely close enough to Dante to invite confident comparison. Consequently, Taylor relies on rather generalized thematic parallels. Hence, for instance, her crucial argu- ment that the Paolo and Francesca episode is central to the eroticizing of the

Journal

The ComparatistUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Oct 3, 2012

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