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Title: The representation of the English in French literature between 1450 and 1530
Author: McKinnon, Simon Gerard
ISNI:       0000 0001 3625 3972
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2005
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This thesis will study representations of the English in a corpus of diverse French literary texts produced between 1450 and 1530. It will draw on theories of image studies to analyse the aesthetic and discursive function of their representation and on theories of intergroup relations to argue that representing the English was part of a strategy for French collective self-representation. During this period, the English function as a `significant other' in terms of the literary representation of collective identity; in many of the texts in our corpus, being French meant being `not English'. Two introductory chapters discuss the theories employed in the thesis and establish the literary and historical background. Non-French late-medieval representations of foreign others are briefly considered and compared to the French `image' of the English. The texts forming our corpus are then studied in chronological order in chapters covering the periods 1450-1510,1511-14,1514-21 and 1521-25. In certain texts, the English are depicted as hated enemies (particularly in those from directly after the end of the Hundred Years War and from the Anglo-French conflicts of 1511-14 and 1521-25); in others, they are mocked more as contemptible rivals. In works celebrating the political alliances associated with the marriages between Louis XII and Henry VIII's sister Mary (1514) and the Dauphin Francis and Henry's daughter Mary (1518), authors avoid representing the English collectively or, indeed, any English characteristics in the individuals they feature. All of these works represent the English as foreign and `other' and stress French cultural and political pre-eminence. The conclusion briefly considers the situation after 1525 when other `nations' begin to take on the role of `significant other'. An appendix provides a descriptive bibliography of the texts in the corpus
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available