Chat with us, powered by LiveChat ENGL408B UMD Love And Feminism In Marie De France's Lais Analysis | acewriters
+1(978)310-4246 credencewriters@gmail.com
  

1) Your paper must engage in some significant way a primary text either written by a woman or written for and/or about women in the Middle Ages.For the purposes of this assignment, primary text is to be understood in these terms: texts written by medieval woman; medieval texts principally addressed to or written about women; postmedieval texts about medieval women (these include contemporary novels and films).Your paper must also engage, in some manner, the general issues and concerns that we will have considered over the course of the semester:i.e. genres of women’s writing, ideas of authorship, audiences, women’s contributions to literate culture, contexts of writing by and for medieval women, etc.2) Your paper must incorporate research involving materials beyond the primary text that will be the basis for your investigation.For this paper you should consult a minimum of fiveadditional sources beyond your primary text. These can be primary and/or secondary sources. For example, let’s say you decide to write about Julian of Norwich’s short text of the Revelation of Love, exploring its connection to other spiritual and mystical writing of the period. You then decide to write about Julian’s text in relation to the fourteenth-century work known as The Cloud of Unknowing.This work would then count as one of the five additional sources you need to consult.I want to encourage you to look at other primary materials from the Middle Ages.You may wish, however, to concentrate on a single medieval text and therefore consult five secondary sources relevant to that text.Reliable, authorized internet resources can be included among these, but you must consult at least three sources in print. See section below on “Sources.”These sources will be the focus of the annotated bibliography you will prepare to accompany this paper. We will review guidelines for preparing an annotated bibliography and appropriate formats for citing those sources.The body of your paper will cite necessary information about sources by using either footnotes or endnotes, or by citing sources parenthetically within your text.Both of these should be prepared following some accepted style format, e.g. MLA style, Chicago style, etc.Style guides are available through the designated library research page for our course: https://lib.guides.umd.edu/engl408BI will go over citation formats and other issues related to writing in class.3) Your paper must be principally directed to analysis and discussion of a primary text, even if that text is a modern literary work or film.As is the case with any literature-related paper, your paper should state and develop a thesis that you support with evidence from whatever sources you choose.4) Papers should be approximately 1700-2500 words (or 7-10 pages at 250 words/page). While length alone is not in itself a virtue, ambition and extra effort will be taken into account in the evaluation of your work.5) I am providing ample opportunity for you to do your best work on this paper, which counts for a significant portion of your grade (25 percent).You have a lot of time to think about, do preliminary research for, and write this paper. This timeline will benefit those who take advantage of it. On Monday April 29 and Monday May 6 we will devote class time to issues related to your papers. Drafts of your annotated bibliographies and papers will be the subject of group discussions on May 6.I will be available to read drafts of your papers through Wed. May 8.You can bring a hard copy of a draft and we can discuss it in my office hours (I will schedule some additional ones) and/or you can submit a draft electronically to me by Tuesday May 7.I will provide comments on all drafts submitted by that date and return them to you by Thursday May 9.
sample_paper_2_engl_408b_sp_2019.docx

spring_2019_engl_408_paper_two_assignment_and_guidelines.doc

Unformatted Attachment Preview

An Analysis of Education in Christine the Pizan’s: A Medieval Woman’s Mirror of Honor
At first look, Christine de Pizan’s A Medieval Woman’s Mirror of Honor: The Treasury
of the City of Ladies, might seem like a simple book designed to give advice to women of all
ages, and in a variety of positions. To surmount the book to simply a book aimed at giving
advice to women is surely the worst thing one might say about it. Many subtleties could easily be
missed when one reads the highly useful and sometimes amusing things Christine has to say.
Despite the number of topics, that Christine teaches its readers, one resounding theme is
interwoven throughout the work and that is the importance of a good education. Ultimately, all
her ideas and all her teachings circle back around to the importance of a good education, and
what it can do for one’s life and one’s soul.
It is easy to pinpoint Christine’s belief in a strong education as she herself benefited from
one. Christine can of course thank “her father Thomas de Pizan, who had loved and educated her
instead of the first-born son he had desired” for her upbringing which allowed her to pursue her
path as a writer (Susan Groag Bell). It is clear that Christine not only believes in the necessity of
a good education but that she really believes education in general is vital. Her suggestion is to
start educating at the top and then these individuals will be “the mirror and example of virtue for
their subjects and companions” (Christine de Pizan, 70). Here she talks about leading by example
and thus educating by example. She pointedly states, “the women, as well as the men, whom
God establishes in the high seats of power and domination must be better educated than others”
which gives Christine room to focus a large amount of her work on educating princesses and
those that are in a higher position ( Christine de Pizan, 70). Christine is subtly hinting that by
educating those that are at the top of the food chain, this wisdom will branch out and down to
those everyday people whom she does not focus on. By mentioning that God is placing these
individuals at this high position she lets her critics know that she is abiding by the standards that
are set for women as being only able to produce work if it is through that lens. She also implies
that as people chosen by God, they are most in need of being virtuous and as they are in a higher
position that Christine’s own position and those that are poorer are most likely to get into
heaven, by this thinking then Christine validates her own opinions and they then become useful
advice.
1
Christine does a clever thing by clarifying the reasoning behind her choosing to address
one specific population, and she actually anticipates what her critics might focus on, the omitting
of the lower classes of people. Christine cleverly appeases those that are in power by claiming
that they need to be the most educated, because they are considered above others and she also
ensures that any criticisms of their behavior is then seen not as a disrespectful, but as helping to
better them. Christine calls this betterment virtue and strongly indicates that being a wise,
educated, and moral person is a large part of this virtue. Those that write about Christine and her
focus on virtue say “she argues that the common good includes the good of all the community’s
members, female as well as male” which highlights how well rounded Christine is and how well
rounded she wants her male and female readers to be (Karen Green, x). Many have commented
on the idea that Christine believed women could be just as intelligent as men, sometimes more
so.
Some say Christine believed” that men and women are equally made in God’s image and
that, since women are not a species apart, the promotion of women as virtuous subjects is as
much the goal of political life as the attainment of virtue by men” ( Karen Green, X). There is
certainly evidence of this in Christine’s work, especially when she suggests that princesses
should be peacekeepers and keep men from starting wars. Christine claims that “women
particularly should concern themselves with peace because men by nature are more foolhardy
and headstrong, and their overwhelming desire to avenge themselves prevents them from
foreseeing the resulting dangers and terrors of war”( Christine de Pizan, 86). Christine is not only
encouraging women to take interest in their husband’s affairs at this point, but also to subtly
mediate when men get themselves in a bind. She is not only suggesting that women are better
peacekeepers but outright saying that women are better suited to seeing the bigger picture. She
says that “woman by nature is more gentle circumspect” and “therefore, if she has sufficient will
and wisdom she can provide the best means possible to pacify man” ( Christine de Pizan, 86).
She once again displays some very apt and radical conclusions for her time and her value and
reasoning for educating women. Although this could of course be debated and it sounds radical,
she gives women an authority in the household and in their own lives that they very rarely have
and provides them with an opportunity to involve themselves in the world and actually even
make important decision by influencing men.
2
The pursuit of knowledge by women can be a difficult ordeal during the middle ages as
most individuals did not see the value of educating girls the way Christine does. Of Christine’s
own education there are surely critics and as some have said:” it is not too far fetched to
speculate that some men in the early Renaissance considered a solitary learned woman to be a
monster” (Susan Groag Bell). Through the engagements in the debate of the “Romance of the
Rose” one can certainly see this misogynistic and antagonistic attitude towards educated women.
Christine responds to these types of critics quite intelligently under the guise of teaching
individuals not to be too prideful and the pitfalls of being so. Christine starts “you seek
vengeance because you think yourself great”, “you dislike anyone who resists or contradicts
you” and “blind ignorance, bred from arrogance, prevents your seeing that everyone, great or
small, who ill-uses these mortal days deserves to suffer later” (Christine de Pizan 74). In the
above lines, Christine can easily and freely respond through critics under the guise of responding
to people that are sinning by being too prideful, and being a good religious woman. This is an
effective technique as educated women were sure to gather the most criticism and “because of
this antagonism to their scholarship learned women of the early renaissance preferred to study
sacred texts and were overly careful about their chastity, often withdrawing to convents”( Susan
Groag Bell). Since Christine herself has neither of those options available to her, she easily uses
sin and vices to criticize her opponents and focuses on virtues as a way of getting her words and
her writings accepted by society at large, both men and women.
Christine’s book is obviously meant as a guidebook for adults to become better people,
but she talks at length about educating children while they are still young. It has been suggested
that this might be because “Christine tortured herself with the thought that she had not profited
by the opportunities she had for study in her younger days” and “she railed at the blindness and
ignorance of youth, including her own” ( Susan Groag Bell). As most wise people that look back
on their younger days and wish to fix things, it seems that Christine is no different than anyone
else and although she is in a position to teach others here, it is clear that her own studies are not
yet ended. There is much evidence in Christine’s own words about taking part in children’s
education and she advises princesses that when it comes to children, “proper development of
their habits, especially their moral and intellectual instruction, is even more critical than the care
of their bodies” (Christine de Pizan, 102). Christine does not stop at that, she really strives to
3
drive home a point about teaching children virtue and morality when young and still
impressionable.
Hundreds of years before child psychologists learned about how important leading by
example is for children, Christine was preaching that “any woman or girl given supervision of
the lady’s daughters must have excellent reputation” and “wise and prudent, she will serve as
example of the virtue, the bearing, and the behavior a daughter of a prince or princess must both
learn and practice”(Christine de Pizan, 103). Again we see that Christine does not exclude the
education of women as most tend to do, but rather she encourages it. Moving beyond just giving
general advice to women, Christine has some authority behind what she says having brought up
her own children so she can tell princesses that “a child’s learning and what is taught to her in
her early youth remains with her throughout her life” ( Christine de Pizan 104). Christine’s
advice moves beyond being sound advice from one woman to another, to being sound advice
from one educated mother to another, who wants her children to be successful, virtuous
individuals and future leaders of the world, whether they are the women that are influencing the
men, or the men actually making the decision. Ultimately Christine lets women know that they
have the power to change their own world by educating and molding their children into
individuals that can make educated decisions once they are in power. This is especially relevant
to those that are one day going to be leading the world , which is why she so strongly believes in
taking an active part in children’s education and foreseeing who they study from and what they
study.
Christine reprimands those that do not appreciate wisdom and education in the same
manner that she does regardless of who they are, and she criticizes those that behave
unbecomingly in their positions for doing so. Christine showcases many different methods of
persuasion depending on what suits her needs most at the moment in order to get her points
across. It has been said that Christine “orchestrates an elaborate system of attack and defense
that defines and (redefines) her authorial position” (Christine Laennec, 47). There is certainly
evidence to support this claim, as we can easily see that she can position herself in the role of the
mother to lend authority to her words, but she can also be on the attack when she perceives that
someone needs chiding.
4
She spares no words when she criticizes the elderly for behaving foolishly and both
attacks their behavior and appeals to their reason when telling them how to react to situations. A
perfect example of this is when Christine says “when inclined to complain or to quarrel, the wise
old woman will say to herself: ‘Good Lord, what is the matter with you!” (Christine de Pizan
204). She appeases her readers by calling the old woman wise and complimenting her on her
wisdom and then quickly moves to chide the woman. This technique allows her some wiggle
room so that she can say what she wants to say but she does not outright offend her readers. She
exploits another smart technique earlier on in her work as well when she reproofs men who do
not allow their wives any responsibilities.
Christine starts: “No matter what a man’s status, he would be foolish indeed if, having a
good, wise spouse, he did not give her authority to manage their affairs whenever the need arose”
“however, some stubbornly ungracious, unappreciative men are incapable of recognizing the
existence of women’s talents and common sense” (Christine de Pizan 118-119). Although she
starts off by attacking the men and implying that if they do not agree with her they are foolish, by
doing so she allies herself with any of her readers who are in the position she describes and do
not have any responsibilities. She also arms and educates her readers with the knowledge that if a
man does not allow this, then he must believe that his wife is not wise, nor is she good and she
does not have any talents or common sense. Christine effectively gives women the weapon of
words so that they can then make these requests and have some standing by which to say that
they deserve these responsibilities. It is easy then to see why some men in Christine’s time would
have taken offense at her work and criticized her and other educated women as harshly as they
did.
Christine’s entire work is a manual aimed to give women the much-needed ammunition
under the guise of education to take an active part in their own lives and the lives of those around
them and to lead a moral life. She uses many different modes of persuasion in her quest to
educate women and tries hard to convince her readers to see things her way, but by her subtle
persuasions, outright attacks and her knowledge as a mother she has a good authority to be
giving advice. Christine’s ultimate goal is to have her work “seen and heard by many valiant
ladies and women of authority” so that they might pray on her behalf and she can “continue the
noble labor of study, in behalf of the praise and promotion of virtue through good example to
5
every human being” (Christine de Pizan 224). It would not be unfounded to say that Christine de
Pizan was most certainly one of the biggest supporters of educating people in order to create a
better world.
Citations:
Bell, Susan Groag. “Cahiers De Recherches Médiévales Et Humanistes.” Christine De Pizan in
Her Study. N.p., 10 June 2008. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.
Christine de Pizan, Charity Cannon. Willard, and Madeleine Pelner. Cosman. A Medieval
Woman’s Mirror of Honor: The Treasury of the City of Ladies. Tenafly, NJ: Bard Hall,
1989. Print.
Green, Karen, and C. J. Mews. Virtue Ethics for Women 1250-1500. New York: Springer
Verlag, 2011. Print.
Laennec, Christine Moneera. “Unladylike Polemics: Christine De Pizan’s Strategies of Attack
and Defense.” Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature 12.1 (1993): 47-59. Print.
6
ENGL 408B Spring 2019
ASSIGNMENT FOR PAPER TWO
Final papers Due Monday May 13 (last day of class)
Because ENGL 408 meets the Advanced Writing requirement for the English major, we will
give a lot of attention to preparing for and writing this paper. This assignment gives you the
opportunity to explore in more depth and detail an aspect of medieval women’s writing and
literature that you choose. This handout provides guidelines for selecting a topic and suggests
some possible topics for those who want more direction. In order to give you as much flexibility
as possible in choosing and developing a topic, I am stipulating only the following requirements
for this paper:
1) Your paper must engage in some significant way a primary text either written by a woman or
written for and/or about women in the Middle Ages. For the purposes of this assignment,
primary text is to be understood in these terms: texts written by medieval woman; medieval
texts principally addressed to or written about women; postmedieval texts about medieval
women (these include contemporary novels and films). Your paper must also engage, in some
manner, the general issues and concerns that we will have considered over the course of the
semester: i.e. genres of women’s writing, ideas of authorship, audiences, women’s contributions
to literate culture, contexts of writing by and for medieval women, etc.
2) Your paper must incorporate research involving materials beyond the primary text that will be
the basis for your investigation. For this paper you should consult a minimum of five additional
sources beyond your primary text. These can be primary and/or secondary sources. For example,
let’s say you decide to write about Julian of Norwich’s short text of the Revelation of Love,
exploring its connection to other spiritual and mystical writing of the period. You then decide to
write about Julian’s text in relation to the fourteenth-century work known as The Cloud of
Unknowing. This work would then count as one of the five additional sources you need to
consult. I want to encourage you to look at other primary materials from the Middle Ages. You
may wish, however, to concentrate on a single medieval text and therefore consult five
secondary sources relevant to that text. Reliable, authorized internet resources can be included
among these, but you must consult at least three sources in print. See section below on
“Sources.”
These sources will be the focus of the annotated bibliography you will prepare to accompany
this paper. We will review guidelines for preparing an annotated bibliography and appropriate
formats for citing those sources. The body of your paper will cite necessary information about
sources by using either footnotes or endnotes, or by citing sources parenthetically within your
text. Both of these should be prepared following some accepted style format, e.g. MLA style,
Chicago style, etc. Style guides are available through the designated library research page for
our course: https://lib.guides.umd.edu/engl408B
I will go over citation formats and other issues related to writing in class.
3) Your paper must be principally directed to analysis and discussion of a primary text, even if
that text is a modern literary work or film. As is the case with any literature-related paper, your
1
paper should state and develop a thesis that you support with evidence from whatever sources
you choose.
4) Papers should be approximately 1700-2500 words (or 7-10 pages at 250 words/page). While
length alone is not in itself a virtue, ambition and extra effort will be taken into account in the
evaluation of your work.
5) I am providing ample opportunity for you to do your best work on this paper, which counts
for a significant portion of your grade (25 percent). You have a lot of time to think about, do
preliminary research for, and write this paper. This timeline will benefit those who take
advantage of it. On Monday April 29 and Monday May 6 we will devote class time to issues
related to your papers. Drafts of your annotated bibliographies and papers will be the subject of
group discussions on May 6. I will be available to read drafts of your papers through Wed. May
8. You can bring a hard copy of a draft and we can discuss it in my office hours (I will schedule
some additional ones) and/or you can submit a draft electronically to me by Tuesday May 7. I
will provide comments on all drafts submitted by that date and return them to you by Thursday
May 9.
If you have questions at all related to writing or any other aspect of your paper (e.g. selecting a
topic), please make an appointment to discuss them with me. I am happy to brainstorm topics
with you.
Note on Sources: The following are examples of secondary sources: books, chapters in books,
articles in journals, reference sources (guides, dictionaries, etc.); articles in guides, dictionaries,
encyclopedias. You will be able to access certain print resources, especially articles in journals,
electronically. Some resources, such as websites with information about your topic, will be
available only electronically. In most cases you cannot expect to find websites devoted to your
topic, though you will no doubt find many electronic references to it in various places. In
searching electronic resources, you should be looking for sites that include genuine information
about your topic in the form of articles, essays, etc. You can include visual resources too.
A FEW IDEAS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR POSSIBLE PAPER TOPICS. WITH MY
APPROVAL, YOU CAN DEVELOP A TOPIC OF YOUR CHOICE. IF THAT’S THE
DIRECTION IN WHICH YOU WANT TO GO, PLEASE CONTACT ME.
1) Other works by writers that we’ve studied: e.g. Marie de France’s Fables, or any of the
following …
Purchase answer to see full
attachment

error: Content is protected !!