The knight on his quest : symbolic patterns of transition in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
Associated University Presses
This book offers an integrated interpretative analysis of the major thematic aspects of the English fourteenth-century romance Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. The chief aim of author Piotr Sadowski is to look at the contents of the narrative in their entirety and to take full advantage of the poem's exceptional and widely praised harmony of structure and design. Within that design, Sadowski focuses on the poem's presentation of the main protagonist and his adventures, seen first of all as a generalized metaphor of the human life understood as a spiritual quest, and, in a more historical sense, as an expression and critique of certain ideals, values, and anxieties that characterized the late medieval institutions of the court, chivalry, and the Church. Sadowski built the interpretive framework of Sir Gawain from an eclectic theoretical base that he believes is most valuable and useful in approaching medieval literature. The main focus of the study remains the literary text itself, created by an author who communicates his view of the world through the poem.