Havelok the Dane | Critical Essay by Sheila Delany

Ian Serraillier
This literature criticism consists of approximately 20 pages of analysis & critique of Havelok the Dane.
This section contains 5,988 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Sheila Delany

Critical Essay by Sheila Delany

SOURCE: "The Romance of Kingship: Havelok the Dane," in Medieval Literary Politics, Manchester University Press, 1990, pp. 61-73.

In the following essay, Delany sketches the historical background of Havelok the Dane, summarizes its plot, and asserts its importance in describing the beginnings of social mobility and change in thirteenth-century England.

In claiming romance for the 'mythos of summer', Northrop Frye associates the genre with 'wish-fulfillment dream'. At the same time, Frye introduces an important qualification to the utopian or fantastic dimension of romance: the quest-romance 'is the search of the libido or desiring self for a fulfillment that will deliver it from the anxieties of reality but will still contain that reality' (p. 193). The Middle English verse romance Havelok the Dane exemplifies this double perspective in the two dimensions in which it explores the nature of kingship—a topic of...

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This section contains 5,988 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Sheila Delany
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