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Engaging the manuscript: new editions and reading the 'whole book' in Chetham's Library MS 8009

Kim-McLean, Katherine Mary (2009) Engaging the manuscript: new editions and reading the 'whole book' in Chetham's Library MS 8009. PhD thesis, University of York.

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Abstract

This thesis considers the intersection of the manuscript and its literature through an examination of the late fifteenth century manuscript, Chetham’s Library 8009 (Mun. A.6.31) and provides four diplomatic editions. This manuscript contains fourteen texts in Middle English including romance, hagiography, courtesy literature, and a comic text. This thesis argues for the importance of reading medieval literature in its manuscript context. Although there is a growing trend to consider the ‘whole book’ and integrate analysis of the material artefact with interpretation, much work remains to be done. In Part I, this thesis presents a new paradigm for reading medieval literature, and argues that the manuscript forms a very literal community of texts, and that each text acts as a co-creator of meaning with the others. It then demonstrates four brief contextual readings that may be made within Chetham 8009 across generic boundaries, and that produce a shift in interpretive focus . Part II provides four diplomatic editions from Chetham 8009: the Life of St Katherine, the Liber Catonis, John Russell’s Book of Carving and Nurture, and the Book of the Duke and Emperor. This thesis aims to contribute to the study of medieval literature by arguing for a methodological shift in the way the literature is approached and by providing access to four texts either previously unedited or not easily accessible.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: manuscript, medieval literature, Middle English, editions, communities of texts, Middle English romance, courtesy literature, comic ballad, historical account, hagiography, Chetham's Library MS 8009, whole book, reading
Academic Units: The University of York > English and Related Literature (York)
Depositing User: Dr Katherine Mary Kim-McLean
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2012 09:19
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2013 08:45
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1243

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