The Canterbury Tales
The Canterbury Tales
Read Story and analyze text. Do not summarize story give meaning to text.
Module 7 I Journal Entry 7 – The Canterbury Tales
Due Feb 24 by 11:59pm Points 100 Submitting a text entry box or a file upload
[In Assignment: Journal Entry 7
In this module, you were introduced to Chaucer and his Canterbury Tales. In this journal, reflect on Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales with specific focus on “The Wife of Bath” and “The Pardoner’s Tale.” Identify and elaborate on plot devices and themes that are employed in the texts. Pay specific attention to the theme of gender relations as explored in “The Wife of Bath” and religious hypocrisy explore in “The Pardoner’s Tale.”
Submission and Assessment Guidelines
The entry should be 600-700 words long. Each entry will be graded out of a possible 100 points. A high-scoring entry will demonstrate that you have read the text; do not, however, spend precious time summarizing it. We’ve all read the same text, but you can offer something unique by putting forward your personal opinion. Remember, when it comes to literary analysis, an “opinion” needs to be advanced and defended through reference to specific details in the text. So, if a passage leaves you feeling a sense of awe, or a deep discomfort, dig below the surface and find out why. It is not enough simply to give your initial response without offering analysis and evidence. Have specific passages or lines that you can reference. It is important to show that you have considered the text as a whole. In other words, entries that only mention the first few pages are suspect.
In your entry you may want to look at the devices the author uses to develop character or plot; you may consider the author’s use of imagery, metaphor, allusion or ambiguity. You can also discuss the philosophical, ethical or spiritual implications of the work. First person—”I” and “me”—point of view is appropriate, and the response can be free-flowing, and structured as you see fit. You are encouraged to develop your own voice, and can even bring in outside ideas from the contemporary world, and show how they relate to the themes in the text. Do remember, of course, that this is an academic setting and the tone should be appropriate.
Journal Entries (6)
Criteria Ratings Pts
Understanding of text 25 pts 0 pts The student has clearly read the text and demonstrates an Full No understanding of the major developments in terms of plot, Marks Marks 25 pts character, theme and setting. The student touches on key ideas, but does not spend too much time summarizing.
Use of direct quotations/ close reading of the text The student uses either direct quotations from the text to help demonstrate a position or make an argument, or makes very close reference to specific details in the text. Full MLA citation is not required, but reference to lines (or page number) is good.
Insightful analysis The student shows an ability to analyze themes, character development, and plot. The student understands how the section under consideration fits into the text more broadly speaking, and where appropriate incorporates cultural and/or historical insights to deepen the analysis. Where appropriate, the student may make connections to other subjects, ideas, trends, interests, etc. This is not required, but, when done correctly, can boost the post’s strength.
Grammar, syntax, spelling The journal entry should be free of spelling and grammatical errors. An excellent post includes well-written sentences, and well-organized paragraphs, in which ideas are presented in a logical sequence.
25 pts 0 pts Full No Marks Marks 25 pts
25 pts 0 pts Full No Marks Marks
25 pts 0 pts Full No Marks Marks 25 pts
Total Points: 100
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Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales is a collection of stories told by a diverse group of pilgrims on their way to the shrine of Saint Thomas Becket in Canterbury. Two of the tales, “The Wife of Bath” and “The Pardoner’s Tale,” provide insight into the themes of gender relations and religious hypocrisy.
In “The Wife of Bath,” Chaucer explores the role of women in society and their relationships with men. The Wife of Bath, a character who has been married five times, challenges the traditional view of women as subordinate to men. She is a strong, independent woman who uses her sexuality as a means of control over men. Chaucer employs several plot devices to convey the character of the Wife of Bath, including her use of a prologue to introduce herself and her stories, as well as her skillful use of rhetoric to make her case. The themes of gender relations are further highlighted through the Wife of Bath’s description of the ideal marriage, which she sees as a partnership between equals, rather than a relationship dominated by men.
In “The Pardoner’s Tale,” Chaucer examines the theme of religious hypocrisy. The Pardoner, a character who sells indulgences to people seeking forgiveness for their sins, is himself guilty of the same sins he is supposedly absolving. The plot of the tale centers around three young men who set out to kill Death but are ultimately undone by their own greed and betrayal. Chaucer uses irony and satire to highlight the hypocrisy of the Pardoner and the greed and foolishness of the young men. The tale ultimately exposes the corruption and greed of the medieval church, as well as the dangers of putting faith in religious figures who are more interested in financial gain than spiritual enlightenment.
In both tales, Chaucer employs a variety of literary devices to convey his themes. He uses humor, satire, and irony to critique the societal norms of his time and to expose the hypocrisy and corruption of those in power. He also uses vivid imagery and symbolism to convey his ideas, such as the use of the color green in “The Pardoner’s Tale” to represent greed and envy. Chaucer’s use of framing devices, such as the pilgrims telling stories to pass the time, adds an additional layer of meaning to the tales, suggesting that the stories we tell ourselves have the power to shape our perceptions of the world around us.
In conclusion, “The Wife of Bath” and “The Pardoner’s Tale” are two of the most important and influential tales in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Through his use of plot devices, literary techniques, and themes, Chaucer offers a commentary on the societal norms and values of his time. His critiques of gender relations and religious hypocrisy are still relevant today and offer a powerful reminder of the importance of questioning authority and standing up for what is right.