Category: French literature

Aucassin et Nicolette

Yesterday I read Aucassin et Nicolette, basically in one sitting. I am reading a lot of French literature this summer because I have comprehensive exams in the fall (!!!!!!!) and I need to prepare. So here I am, reading medieval French literature that I would otherwise never pick up, but in this case I was pleasantly surprised.

Aucassin et Nicolette is a chantefable, which is a blend of prose and song, but in book format it was a blend of prose and poetry. It’s the story of two lovers who face many obstacles, of course, but Aucassin does silly things like wonder how he will be to express his love for “sa douce amie” Nicolette if his enemies cut his head off, or dislocate his shoulder as he dismounts his horse because he is thinking about Nicolette instead of what he is doing.

Considering that this was written somewhere between the 12th and 13th centuries I was surprised at how often I laughed out loud and really, really enjoyed this. I’m not a huge fan of anything written before 1750, which is a huge amount of texts, I know, and really weird considering the history of the English language is fascinating to me, but it’s just a personal thing. Too many women being forced to decide between suicide and convents, in my opinion. I gave A and N 4/5 on Goodreads.

In other news I decided to join Camp NaNoWriMo, which starts in July, to help push myself in thesis writing and comps preparation. I’ve never done any sort of online or community writing, so I am looking forward to it.