© 2006

The Medieval Author in Medieval French Literature

  • Virginie Greene

Part of the Studies in Arthurian and Courtly Cultures book series (SACC)

About this book


Thirty-five years ago Roland Barthes proclaimed the death of the Author. For medievalists no death has been more timely. The essays in this volume create a prism through which to understand medieval authorship as a process and the medieval author as an agency in the making.


Autorschaft Interpretation novel

Editors and affiliations

  • Virginie Greene
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, and in the Program of History and LiteratureHarvard UniversityUSA

About the editors

VIRGINIE GREENE is Associate Professor of Medieval French Literature at Harvard, USA.

Bibliographic information


"There is an intriguing misfit between Barthes's claim that the authoris deadand medieval textsfor whom theauthor may never haveexisted. A dozen leading French medievalists reflect here on our desire nevertheless to recognize the authors of the works we read - or on their desire to be recognized by us.Some essays address the play of authorial singularity and multiplicity; others the interplay between effacement and self-staging; yet others thegenesis of the medieval text. Greene's nuanced opening and closing remarksmaintain focus and pacein this excellent and diversevolume." - Sarah Kay, Princeton University

"This provocative collection of essays explores authorial agency in a variety of medieval French texts from the twelfth through sixteenth centuries. Contributors argue for the ways in which authorial identity is debated, contested, and constructed through the reuse and continuation of earlier texts, through contradiction and even violence, and through claims to authority, neutrality, and truth. This extended interrogation of medieval authorship offers important new understandings of medieval literary practices and of the textual negotiations that define the medieval author." - Peggy McCracken, University of Michigan