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Chaucer's European Life

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Chaucer's European Life

Afternoon Lecture/Seminar

Friday, September 22, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET
Code: 1K0394
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Join biographer Marion Turner for a fresh account of the extraordinary story of how a wine merchant’s son became the poet of The Canterbury Tales. Geoffrey Chaucer is often called the father of English literature, but Turner reveals him as a great European writer and thinker. Drawing on new information about Chaucer’s travels, private life, and the circulation of his writings, she reconstructs in detail the cosmopolitan world of Chaucer’s adventurous life, focusing on the places and spaces that fired his imagination.

From the wharves of London to the frescoed chapels of Florence, she recounts Chaucer’s experiences as a prisoner of war in France, as a father visiting his daughter’s nunnery, as a member of a chaotic Parliament, and as a diplomat in Milan, interweaving the story of his life with the story of his writings.

Turner is the J.R.R. Tolkien professor of English literature and language at Oxford University. Her 2019 biography of the poet, Chaucer: A European Life, won numerous prizes and was named as a book of the year by publications including the Sunday Times and the Times Literary Supplement.

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