Chaucer's women : nuns, wives, and Amazons /
Priscilla Martin.
1st ed.
Iowa City : University of Iowa Press, 1990.
xv, 254 p. ; 23 cm.
More Details
Iowa City : University of Iowa Press, 1990.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. 231-247) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1991-07:
Martin bases this reading of Chaucer's work on the assumption that "Chaucer recognizes. . .the implications of traditional restriction of written discourse to a male clerical class," and that he explores those implications as he addresses his major subject, the problematic relationships between the sexes. One would wish that her study (one of a very few book-length analyses of Chaucer's women) brought more forcefully original insights to his poetry. But although Martin offers some interesting observations on gendered discourse in Chaucer's works--and on equally gendered silence--most of her perceptions strike an experienced reader of Chaucer with a sense of deja vu. Her readings are thoughtful, sensible, and often sensitive, but not particularly original. For more stimulating theoretical arguments, one might better go to Carolyn Dinshaw's Chaucer's Sexual Poetics (CH, Oct'90). Nevertheless, though Martin's book, lamentably, lacks a bibliography, it would be a useful critical study for undergraduate libraries. -M. A. Dalbey, Eastern Michigan University
This item was reviewed in:
University Press Book News, June 1991
Choice, July 1991
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