Chaucer - A Merchant's Tale

Watch this thread
AshJames
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#1
Report Thread starter 14 years ago
#1
Hi guys,

I'm doing this for Edexcel, it's an open book exam, and i'm half way through annotating, highlighting and what not - What would you say are the key points and themes?

I'd say the wedding night, and how Janurie's boasts are completely pseudo which act to ridicule him, he uses sexual potions and what not.

How May's role is subverted. She isn't the moulded wax but Janurie is. He is metaphorically blind as well as physically, and May realises this from the start.

Help would be great
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#2
Report 14 years ago
#2
Some of the themes i think are, women, religion, money, marriage not sure bout the rest lol. the song of solomon is good to refrence and the debate between justinus and placebo hmm not sure bout anyhing else it would be helpful cause im doing this exam as well.
0
reply
AshJames
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#3
Report Thread starter 14 years ago
#3
Can explain the solomon bit? I really don't understand the reference.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#4
Report 14 years ago
#4
i wrotes so much but it got deleted becaus ei pressed back
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#5
Report 14 years ago
#5
(Original post by AshJames)
Can explain the solomon bit? I really don't understand the reference.
Im not really 100% sure what to explain, basically Januarie is paraphrasing it, Solomon was in the bible but he also slept around i think not 100% sure again. I'll try posting a bit later when i actually start revising english and chucer.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#6
Report 14 years ago
#6
ok again. anit-feminism (also debate about marriage is linked to this) i think is a central theme of the poem as the narrative is told from a male's perspective(the merchant) and arguably it's misogynistic as even the Merchant himself has been married for 2 months and believes his ex would be more of match for the devil himslef!!! generally January(and ultimately men) are portrayed as innocent as May pushes him into cuckoldry(yes literally, remember she climbs on his back in the garden). women portaryed as decietful and ufaithful etc. as a counter argument u could say well no january isn't entirely innocent because it was his fault for marrying a woman who is 40 yrs younger then him-BIG MISTAKE! but then you could argue and say actually he really is inncocent due to the vary narture of his character: as being self-delusional, evident in the fact that he uses various food metaphors to describe women "tender meat...."(cant remember it off the top of my head lol) which shows he views women as only existing for the need to satsify mens sexual desires. also u could say that the verbal irony used by january "...warm wax..." suggests that women can be moulded and manipulated by men, yet you could argue this is ironic not only she(may) manipulates January but also Damyan. again Damyan might be just a tool only used for sex and lust since their story draws from the genre of fabliau but one might argue that actually she really has fallen in love with Damyan but ofcourse you'd have to provide evidence for that in the exam lol

anyway that was me off the top of my head we should keep this going, i'm taking this exam aswell(clearly) and it would be great if we could share our ideas
p.s. anyone know the best way to revise/prepare for desk study (for edexcel) coz im doing an intensive english course

laters
0
reply
AshJames
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#7
Report Thread starter 14 years ago
#7
Can you explain how it is anti-feministic? I understand it's told from the merchants perspective, but isn't May a strong female character? o_O Does he side with May or Januarie? Confused!
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#8
Report 14 years ago
#8
im ok with anti femanism, ok, you should look at other versions of the tale such as if you compare The Novellino to Chaucer’s tale you may even begin to consider Chaucer as a proto feminist as his version is more modern in that it gives women a voice whereas The Novelino is totally from a male prospective. so that could be your counter argument (google the novellino). you could also talk about Chaucers 'The legend of good women'.

Anti femanistic views are how May is not really given a voice, even though she is a little. in the prologue as seious-man has said he goes his wife would out match the devil. You could compare may with Grisselda and if you look at them closely both are to extremes of a female. one is really submissive whilst the other is evil etc, so you could say that shows that women cannot be in the middle as we may see them today.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#9
Report 14 years ago
#9
(Original post by AshJames)
Can you explain how it is anti-feministic? I understand it's told from the merchants perspective, but isn't May a strong female character? o_O Does he side with May or Januarie? Confused!
yeah see this is the tricky part, the Merchant doesn't side with neither Januray nor may. instead he take on his own persona because he ridicules January for being completely unexperienced with women and he sets him up to be a fool( note there's sustained irony throughout the poem in the merchants voice and this shows his mockery towards january -not bothered to give examples) while at the same time he (or rather chaucer) presents may as a b**ch (decietful etc) because the merchants whole pupose and aim is to prove his point that havig a wife is NOT benefical for married men and only beings misery. instead marriage for women is beneficial (money etc..could link it in with the idea of their marriage as being a finiancial transaction)

your point about may being a strong female...YES TOTALLY TRUE that doesnt mean that its still not antifeministic, you gotta be careful with this theme the best way to go about talking about it is to link it in with anti-feminism in that era (14 century i believe was when the merchants tail was made) a-f was common in that time and if your clever make a brief link to this. do your research or ask your teacher.
the gods are important aswell..
hope that makes sense man ^^
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#10
Report 14 years ago
#10
(Original post by Shuky)
im ok with anti femanism, ok, you should look at other versions of the tale such as if you compare The Novellino to Chaucer’s tale you may even begin to consider Chaucer as a proto feminist as his version is more modern in that it gives women a voice whereas The Novelino is totally from a male prospective. so that could be your counter argument (google the novellino). you could also talk about Chaucers 'The legend of good women'.

Anti femanistic views are how May is not really given a voice, even though she is a little. in the prologue as seious-man has said he goes his wife would out match the devil. You could compare may with Grisselda and if you look at them closely both are to extremes of a female. one is really submissive whilst the other is evil etc, so you could say that shows that women cannot be in the middle as we may see them today.
i see where your comin from but i think you gotta be careful about refrencing too much from out outside "the merchants tale" since you might go off task lol but by all means thats a good contrast
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#11
Report 14 years ago
#11
(Original post by serious_man18)
i see where your comin from but i think you gotta be careful about refrencing too much from out outside "the merchants tale" since you might go off task lol but by all means thats a good contrast
yh true, i was just giving you examples that could be used.

Do you no any good websites that wold help with the background and 14th century knowlege, thats what i need at the moment.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#12
Report 14 years ago
#12
dont kno of any website but have u got cambridge notes for the merchant's tale? its the best its a mini book and i think it covers the theme of anti-feminism
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#13
Report 14 years ago
#13
(Original post by serious_man18)
dont kno of any website but have u got cambridge notes for the merchant's tale? its the best its a mini book and i think it covers the theme of anti-feminism
no but i ordered the York advanced notes last night, do you no if hats any good.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#14
Report 14 years ago
#14
(Original post by Shuky)
no but i ordered the York advanced notes last night, do you no if hats any good.
ive got them aswell they're equally as good but the language can get abit complex sometimes (its made for grad students aswell)
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#15
Report 14 years ago
#15
(Original post by serious_man18)
ive got them aswell they're equally as good but the language can get abit complex sometimes (its made for grad students aswell)
oh kk, hopefully they help me out a bit cuse i need all the help i can get. I have to do the following essay before next monda so can you gve me any tips on wat to talk about in my paragraphs please.

"In the 'Merchant's Prologue and Tale' Chaucer presents a world dominated by money and possessions."

To what extent do you agree? You should include in your answer an examination of AT LEAST THREE distinct passages.
0
reply
serious_man18
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#16
Report 14 years ago
#16
for something like this i would try to examine something from the beginning, something from the middle and the end. but your better off picking the scenes which revolve around the concept of money and possessions and perhaps compare them. having said that, money and possessions are central to the tale because their marriage is essentially a finiancial transaction. shuky the first thing that springs to my mind with a question like this is the scene(area) after january produces a love poem to may i cant remmeber the pages and what not but the bit he says - you'll be the heir to all my possessions ill give you all the land you want and youl recieve all my money she then responds i am no wench (i think). that is the first thing i'd say personally .
kool
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#17
Report 14 years ago
#17
(Original post by serious_man18)
for something like this i would try to examine something from the beginning, something from the middle and the end. but your better off picking the scenes which revolve around the concept of money and possessions and perhaps compare them. having said that, money and possessions are central to the tale because their marriage is essentially a finiancial transaction. shuky the first thing that springs to my mind with a question like this is the scene(area) after january produces a love poem to may i cant remmeber the pages and what not but the bit he says - you'll be the heir to all my possessions ill give you all the land you want and youl recieve all my money she then responds i am no wench (i think). that is the first thing i'd say personally .
kool
thanks, yh i know which bit your talking about. The essay is fairly eas compared to others however, with this one im finding it hard to put my ideas in paragraphs, so thats what i'll do no.
0
reply
AshJames
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#18
Report Thread starter 14 years ago
#18
I know it's a stab in the dark, but what are some likely questions? Is it better to go with the context question or general one? I need an A in this unit! Ekkk
0
reply
Shuky
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#19
Report 14 years ago
#19
(Original post by serious_man18)
ive got them aswell they're equally as good but the language can get abit complex sometimes (its made for grad students aswell)
Yh i got it today and so far the bits I have read are really good as it tells me stuff that i did not know before and i believe even my teacher does not know. The bits about astrolog is really interesting as well, Ash i know how you feel it would really help me too if i got an A in this module and if you do not already have this I would recomend yu to buy it.
0
reply
AshJames
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#20
Report Thread starter 14 years ago
#20
I re-read the tale last night, and i'm now going through it with the York notes annotating important bits. I've done a colour code was well for each character so i'm not wasting precious time looking for quotations. I have to agree York notes is good and i've heard a lot of people do really well with the aid of them.

So far i've understood it all. One thing though, are Placebo and Justinus, Januarie's brothers or friends? My teacher has been telling us brothers, but York notes states that they are friends.

x_x
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

How did your AQA A-level Psychology Paper 1 go?

Loved the paper - Feeling positive (268)
42.41%
The paper was reasonable (260)
41.14%
Not feeling great about that exam... (57)
9.02%
It was TERRIBLE (47)
7.44%

Watched Threads

View All