Voices and Narrators.

Irvin, Matthew W.

Voices and Narrators.

Irvin, Matthew W. "Voices and Narrators." 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. 237-52.

Irvin's article reviews the iterations of Gower's author-persona, finding a "voice . . . who is sometimes a narrator, and sometimes not" (237), and includes both Genius and Amans. For the CA, foundational traditions label Genius inconsistent, with the priest of love and moral instructor at odds (237), even wildly conflicted (245), while other critics find his moral voice both Christian and "coherent" (238-40, 244, 246). In a variation on the latter view, the CA gives voice to a real dialogue, but with Amans reconciled to Genius's instruction by the end of the poem (242). The poet spoke out as preacher-prophet in VC, assuming the more modest persona of philosopher in the Prologue to the CA (241), and a woman's voice in some "Balades" (247). [LBB. Copyright. The John Gower Society. eJGN 37.2.]


Gower Subjects
Style, Rhetoric, and Versification
Confessio Amantis
Vox Clamantis