Faith, Ethics and Church : Writing in England, 1360-1409

Author / Editor
Aers, David.

Faith, Ethics and Church : Writing in England, 1360-1409

Cambridge : D. S. Brewer, 2000.

Physical Description
xii, 153 pp.

Explores faith, social and political action, and theology in late-medieval England, focusing on Chaucer, Gower, Langland, the Gawain poet, and Wyclif. Assesses how their ideas reflect Thomas Aquinas, Ockham, and John Ball and how they responded to such phenomena as the plague and the uprising of 1381. Chaucer is not the "skeptical fideist" nor a stoic Christian, but a political poet. In ClT, he imagines religious "absences" that lead to social tyranny, while SNT asserts religious opposition to social tyranny. In SNT and ParsT, the Eucharist is "absent," reflecting the "diminished role of the sacraments," in line with Wycliffite thought. The stoicism of lyrics such as Truth is inconsistent with the "profoundly pessimistic representations of the contemporary Church" in CT.

Chaucer Subjects
Background and General Criticism.
Clerk and His Tale.
Second Nun and Her Tale.
Parson and His Tale.
Canterbury Tales--General.