ENGL 252

Tales from the Viking Age

Prerequisite: First-year students with permission. As one of the great vernacular literatures of medieval Europe, the Old Norse-Icelandic corpus tells the stories of the legendary heroes and colorful families of the Viking Age. focusing particularly on sagas, this course introduces Old Norse-Icelandic literature in translation and fosters skills in close reading and interpretation through a concentration on form, structure, motif, and characterization. We wil also discuss the historical milieu in which these texts were composed and transmitted, and how the literature represents aspects of early medieval culture, including such topics as travel abroad and raiding, settlement, law, love and marriage, feasting, warrior ethics, blood feud, cosmology and religious rituals, and the conversion to Christianity. Offered alternate years. V.2