discussion 2478

A. Anglo-Saxon living
Go here and read a history of early Anglo-Saxon life (Links to an external site.). I often find it much easier to print text so I can annotate it. If you donâ€t, please consider taking some notes so you might better actively read the content. Please click the hyperlinks as needed to enrich your understanding.
1. What kind of influence would Englandâ€s fluctuating borders and physical geography have on the literature? Even if it does not say exactly this in the lecture, you can still make an educated guess as to how that aspect of life would play into the art and writing of the time.
2. What are a few of the languages and/or ethnicities that converge in early British Lit?
3. Quoting correctly (see week 1 files or this MLA page on quoting websites (Links to an external site.)), quote one passage from the lectureâ€s section on women and children or on the laws of the time, and explain why you picked it. Does it surprise you? Does it seem exactly what you would expect? Does it lead you to predict anything about the literature we will be reading? You can analyze this quote in any way you like, but cite it correctly and tell us why you chose it.
The analysis of a quote is by far the most important part of using a source: your original analysis is what makes it your original literary analysis! That sounds very meta, but it’s true: the quote does not speak for us. We must speak for it.
4. Why is it important to know the types of occupations the people had, when we try to analyze the themes of their literature?
B. The Exeter Book
Go here to read about the Exeter Book: Wanderer (Links to an external site.)
(note: if the link won’t work, I have also included it as a file. And if that won’t work, close this study guide and you will see it linked as a PDF under the Study Guide link in Week 2.)
1. In your own words, what is the Exeter book?
2. Why is it so amazing that we can still read this?
C. Read this PDF containing The Wife’s Lament Elegies from the Exeter book.
(Links to an external site.)
Often, the footnotes help, so read them too.
D. Go here to read The Wanderer (Links to an external site.) (you will see it is in old English as well as modern).
E. Go here to this source for other elegies/riddles (Links to an external site.), and choose two more to read (the topics of the Elegies are hyperlinked). When done, answer:
1 a-d. I have asked you to read four riddles/elegies: Wanderer, Wife’s Lament, and 2 of your choice from the Anglo-Saxon riddle page. What does each of the four elegies or riddles seem to teach or warn or otherwise say to the reader? Be specific as to why you think what you think.

Create a question about one of these elegies and post it to the forum for week 2. Your question should be critical, so ask: why, what do you think, do you agree, what if, is it possible—as opposed to “what is the color mentioned in line 5?”.

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