Remembering The Past: The Medieval German Poet-Minstrel in Cultural Context (Disputatio)
Maria DobozyISBN: 2503515169;
Book DescriptionThis book examines the social and cultural conditions that governed performance art in the German Middle Ages from 1170 to 1400. Poet-performers are central to understanding both literature and performance art because these entertainers, more than any other group, created, disseminated, and interpreted the medieval poetic oeuvre. Performance theory is used as a framework throughout. This study argues that performance techniques (gesture, voice, instrumentation) that create an electrifyingexperience for audiences determine the performer's lifestyle and also the thematic and rhetorical strategies of their compositions. The itinerant poet-performer presented himself as a moral judge and critic of epoch-making political events. His performances transform time, place and people and thus become a socializing process that can change people's attitudes. Poet-minstrels were capable of re-membering the listeners' memories of the past during the intense present of the performance.
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