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Supernatural Speakers in Old English Verse

Poetic and Spiritual Power in Early Medieval Society

176 pages
Amsterdam University Press

The first extended study of supernatural discourse in Old English poetry, Supernatural Speakers in Old English Verse fills a conspicuous gap in the scholarship of early medieval literature. Drawing insights from various disciplines, including critical discourse analysis, social psychology, and oral poetry studies, Supernatural Speakers demonstrates how and why three poets—the poets of Genesis A, Christ C, and Guthlac A—marshalled their distinction as experts of the Old English poetic medium to perform the power of supernatural speech by means of masterful poetics. By offering new analytical paths through these early medieval poems, Supernatural Speakers elucidates the importance of poetics as a critical window on the social and religious functions of verbal art in early medieval England.

Author Bio
Matthew D. Coker ================

Matthew D. Coker is Visiting Assistant Professor of English at the University of North Florida. He received his D.Phil. from the University of Oxford and specializes in the intersections of identity, style, and culture in medieval literature.