Gower and Theory: Old Books, New Matters.

Hsy, Jonathan.

Gower and Theory: Old Books, New Matters.

Hsy, Jonathan. "Gower and Theory: Old Books, New Matters." In Ana Sáez-Hidalgo, Brian Gastle, and R. F. Yeager, eds. The Routledge Research Companion to John Gower (Oxford and New York: Routledge, 2017), pp. 9-20.

Hsy starts off by reviewing three important "waves" in recent theoretical scholarship on Gower: the role of "ethics . . . modern identity-based politics, and an increase in scholarship that explores the author's varied linguistic and socioeconomic milieu" (10). He proceeds to discuss earlier theoretical approaches as well as Gower himself as a practitioner of literary "theorique" (12), including the fruitful potential of multilingual "divisioun" (14). In the longest section, "Gower's Corpus," Hsy shows how the poet anticipates "radical crip theory" (15) by pushing his debilitated body into stark and thematically charged "visibility" (15), as somewhat surprisingly discussed by a fifteenth century scribe (18). [LBB. Copyright. The John Gower Society. eJGN 37.2.]


Gower Subjects
Background and General Criticism