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Fiche de cours

Beowulf's Noble Deeds ? A Parallel Reading of Beowulf and John Garnder's Grendel (written 1971)

Faculté de gestion: Faculté des lettres

Responsable(s): Denis Renevey
Intervenant(s): -

Période de validité: 2017 -> 2017

Pas d'horaire défini.


Semestre de printemps
2 heures par semaine
28 heures par semestre

Langue(s) d'enseignement: anglais
Public: Oui
Crédits: 0


This seminar considers contextual, linguistic and thematic aspects linked to our understanding of the Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf. After a close reading of some parts of the poem in its original Old English language, we will look at the way in which John Gardner appropriated the narrative of the poem to offer a fascinating fiction based on the perspective of Grendel, one of the monsters in Beowulf. John Gardner's Grendel (1971) represents the perspective of the monster via the lens of existentialism, a philosophical movement whose most influential figure was Jean-Paul Sartre. Both Beowulf and Grendel deal with foundational values such as finding meaning in one's own existence, understanding the concept of exile, and ruminating upon the power of literature and art in general. We will discuss to what extent such questions, covered in great details in both Beowulf and Grendel, are still relevant today.

Set text: Beowulf, trans. By R.M. Liuzza (Peterborough, Ontario: Broadview Editions, 2013); John Gardner, Grendel (New York: Vintage Books Edition, 1989).


To be announced, Week 1

Informations supplémentaires


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Swiss University
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