A Companion to Alain Chartier (c.1385-1430)

Father of French Eloquence


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A Companion to Alain Chartier: Father of French Eloquence brings together fourteen contributions that offer a range of perspectives and insights into the works of this exceptional late medieval author. As heir to the past and herald of the future, Chartier reinvented the traditional, whether in Latin or French, verse or prose. Chartier’s open-ended, dialogic works and his own politically-engaged writing inspired his successors to think and write in new ways about ethics, the individual’s role in society, relationships between men and women, and the responsibility of a poet to his/her audience. As these essays show, Chartier’s renovation of poetic form and content had considerable influence over successive generations of writers in France and across Europe.

Contributors are: Adrian Armstrong, Florence Bouchet, Emma Cayley, Daisy Delogu, Ashby Kinch, James C. Laidlaw, Marta Marfany, Deborah McGrady, Joan E. McRae, Jean-Claude Mühlethaler, Liv Robinson, Camille Serchuk, Andrea Tarnowski, Craig Taylor, and Hanno Wijsman.

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Daisy Delogu (Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania, 2003) is Associate Professor of French at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Theorizing the Ideal Sovereign (Toronto, 2008) and Allegorical Bodies: Power and Gender in Late Medieval France (Toronto, 2015).

Joan E. McRae (Ph.D. University of Virginia, 1997), Professor of French at Middle Tennessee State University has published Alain Chartier: The Quarrel of the Belle dame sans mercy (Routledge, 2004) and Le Cycle de la Belle Dame sans mercy, with David Hult (Champion 2003).

Emma Cayley (BA, MA, DPhil Oxford) is Head of Modern Languages and Associate Professor of Medieval French at the University of Exeter. Her publications on Chartier include Debate and Dialogue (OUP, 2006); Chartier in Europe with Ashby Kinch (Brewer, 2008).
“This is an extraordinarily useful collection of essays that will be of interest to Chartier experts and newcomers alike. It engages with the major critics and trends in Charterian scholarship, opening it up in new directions and suggesting possibilities for yet further research […]. Each individual essay makes a unique contribution while also coinciding with the volume’s overall aims; the collection’s thorough citations will be valuable to any scholar, as will the selected bibliography of primary and secondary sources.”
Kathleen A. Loysen, Montclair State University. In: Renaissance Quarterly, Vol. 70, No. 2 (Summer 2017), pp. 645-646.
List of Contributors
List of Figures
List of Abbreviations

Daisy Delogu, Joan E. McRae, and Emma Cayley


1. Alain Chartier: A Historical and Biographical Overview
James Laidlaw

2. Alain Chartier’s Singularity, Or How Sources Make an Author
Andrea Tarnowski

3. The Bilingual Chartier:
Authorial Duality and Identity in the French and Latin œuvre of Alain Chartier
Emma Cayley with the collaboration of HannoWijsman

4. The Illuminated Manuscripts of the Works of Alain Chartier
Camille Serchuk


5. Performance and Polemic: Gender and Emotion in the Works of Alain Chartier
Daisy Delogu

6. Alain Chartier and Chivalry:
Debating Knighthood in the Context of the Hundred Years War
Craig Taylor

7. Alain Chartier, Political Writer
Jean-Claude Mühlethaler


8. “Que tous se rallïent”: Alain Chartier, Pierre de Nesson, and the Poetics of Peace
Deborah McGrady

9. A Community of Readers: The Quarrel of the Belle Dame sans mercy
Joan McRae

10. The Manuscript and the Print Tradition
Liv Robinson


11. Alain Chartier and Medieval Catalan Literature
Marta Marfany

12. Chartier’s European Influence
Ashby Kinch

13. Alain Chartier and the Rhétoriqueurs
Adrian Armstrong

14. A Good Carter as Guide: Imitating Alain Chartier (15th century – early 17th century)
Florence Bouchet



All interested in Alain Chartier or late-medieval French literature, history, or politics; also, poetics, theory of translation, political theory, early book or manuscript studies, or medieval art history
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