Literary Lectures: Dr Alastair Bennett (Royal Holloway, University of London) on Chaucer’s ‘The Merchant’s Prologue and Tale’

Profile shotThe English Department’s Literary Lectures series continued on Wednesday 8th November with a talk from Dr Alastair Bennett, a lecturer in Medieval Literature at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Dr Bennett engaged an audience comprising our Sixth Form students, staff, parents and visiting staff and students from Epsom College on a set text at A Level: Chaucer’s ‘The Merchant’s Prologue and Tale’. His focus was on desire and deception in the narrative and the ways in which Chaucer explores this. The notion of “love is blind” was considered, including some of its cultural and literary derivations. Dr Bennett also considered the Tale as a composite and morally discomforting text that sits within varying genres.

The audience was also invited to consider the significance of marginalia in surviving medieval manuscripts of the Tale. Culminating with some illuminating questions from the audience, it was a highly enriching and informative hour for which we are most grateful to Dr Bennett. 

Written by Mr Li - Head of English