© 2012

Rethinking Chaucerian Beasts

  • Editors
  • Carolynn Van Dyke

Part of the The New Middle Ages book series (TNMA)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Introduction: In Hir Corages: Chaucer and the Animal Real

  3. The Natural Creature

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 11-11
    2. Carol Freeman
      Pages 33-47
    3. Sandy Feinstein, Neal Woodman
      Pages 49-66
  4. Animal Lessons

  5. Becoming-Animal

  6. Contested Boundaries

  7. Cross-Species Discourse

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 201-201
    2. Megan Palmer Browne
      Pages 203-215

About this book


Building on recent work in critical animal studies and posthumanism, this book challenges past assumptions that animals were only explored as illustrative of humanity, not as interesting in their own right. The contributors combine close reading of Chaucer's texts with insights drawn from cultural or critical animal studies.


Chaucer Close reading gender law Medieval Literature Middle Ages naturalism novel

About the authors

Carolynn Van Dyke is Francis A. March Professor of English at Lafayette College.

Bibliographic information


“Re-thinking Chaucerian Beasts, a timely collection of sixteen essays addressing the meanings of animals and animality in Chaucer’s poetry … . should be considered essential reading not only for all Chaucerians but for any scholar wishing to remain in sync with critical theorizings of medieval texts undertaken under the enabling aegis of the ‘animal turn.’” (Peter W. Travis, Speculum, Vol. 91 (1), January, 2016)

"This book of sixteen short essays offers Chaucerians an array of perspectives, some theoretically adept, others easing readers gently into critical animal studies." - The Medieval Review

"Dyke has assembled a timely collection, since critical animal studies have risen recently in status and visibility . . . this volume will likely be of some interest to researchers working on medieval attitudes toward the animal, and the brevity of the essays may make them suitable for the undergraduate classroom as well . . . Recommended." - Choice