Christendom and The Song of Roland Essay

Christendom and The Song of Roland Essay

Length: 1103 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Song of Roland is the oldest epic poem in French, written by an anonymous poet, composed in between late eleven century to twelfth century. This epic poetry holds an important place in the history of France and invention of Christendom. The Song of Roland is a cultural artifact that takes us to the journey of Medieval Europe, when religion becomes an important element for the formation of proto-Europe. Religion plays a crucial role in The Song of Roland and becomes the reason of criticism. Some readers might take this poem as a religious text, whereas, for some reader it is a fictional literary work and contain ideological perspective. The Song of Roland cannot be consider as a religious text, however, the poet uses religion for formation of national identity, military propaganda and for promoting feudalism in proto-Europe. Cultural artifacts such as The Song of Roland and medieval architecture help to create “Christendom”.
The Song of Roland is a historical text that also involves fiction. It recalls the event of Battle of Roncesvals that take place in 778 century among Christian Franks and Muslim Saracens. The non-fictional outline of The Song of Roland can be found in Einhard’s Vita Karoli Magni “Biography of Charlemagne” written in 817-30 and from Damaso Alonso’s Nota Emilianense. Both historical accounts give little detail of the battle in which Charlemagne’s (Holy Roman Emperor) army face a minor setback while returning back to France and in this event some important warriors were killed, among them was Roland, the most courageous. “At this point”, Robert Harrison state in introduction to The Song of Roland, “history leaves off and speculation begins”. (Harrison 11). The revenge of Roland’s death taken by Charlemagne, ...


... middle of paper ...


... not only misrepresent Christianity but also Islam. The Christianity was transformed and then uses to legitimate secular purposes of medieval Europe, which then becomes “Christendom”.



Works Cited


Davies, Norman, 1939-. Europe :A History. Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1996. Print.

Fredrickson, George M., 1934-. Racism :A Short History. Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 2002. Print.

Hobson, John M. The Eastern Origins of Western Civilisation. Eds. Cambridge University Press E-books (CRKN) - York University and Inc ebrary. Cambridge, UK ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2004. Print.

The Norton Anthology of World Masterpieces /. Ed. Maynard Mack 1909-. 5th continental ed. -- ed. New York : Norton, 1987. Print.

The Song of Roland. Ed. Robert L. 1932- Harrison. New York : New American Library, 1970. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Biblical Symbolism Of The Song Of Roland Essay

- The Song of Roland was formally recorded around the 12th century, near the beginning of the Crusade period. As the Crusades developed within European Christendom, The Song of Roland inspired christian soldiers and justified the purpose of the Crusades: to promote Christianity, by force, and reclaim the Christian lands. In other words, the mission of crusaders was to rid the lands of “Pagans,”similar to the Saracens of The Song of Roland. It is in no way surprising that this epic would contain much biblical symbolism....   [tags: Christianity, Jesus, Crusades, Bible]

Better Essays
814 words (2.3 pages)

Prejudice in The Song of Roland Essay

- Prejudice in The Song of Roland Unfortunately, the role of ignorance and jealousy combining to breed fear and hatred is a recurring theme in history ultimately exhibiting itself in the form of prejudice. As demonstrated through the altering of historical events in The Song of Roland, the conflict between the Christian and Islamic religions takes precedence over the more narrow scope of any specific battle and is shaped, at least in part by the blind perception of a prejudice born of the ignorance and envy Christian Europe had for representatives of the non-Christian world....   [tags: Song of Roland Essays]

Better Essays
1724 words (4.9 pages)

The Epic Of The Song Of Roland Essay

- The epic The Song of Roland displays the themes of religion, heroism, bravery and honour. In this epic Roland seems like a normal soldier who is simply doing his job in defending his territory and doing as Charlemagne says. He does not seem to have any want for personal glory like heroes in other epics. The question that arises about heroism is it possible to grow into a hero or are you born a hero. And what makes a true hero. Roland is an example of a true hero who shows bravery throughout the epic even up until the day that he dies....   [tags: Family, Interpersonal relationship, Stepfamily]

Better Essays
1023 words (2.9 pages)

Values of A True Lord in The Song of Roland Essay

- Throughout the epic poem, The Song of Roland, the poet essentially dissects the idea of good versus evil as it is represented in contrast between the two opposing armies. Good being the French Christian army led by Charlemagne and on the contrary, the Muslim Sacarens led by Marsile and Baligant representing evil. While the battle between good and evil and Christian versus Muslim wages on throughout the text, the poet also illustrates the characteristics of the true and fake virtues that compose or destroy a knight or lord....   [tags: Christianity, Charlemagne, Paganism]

Better Essays
1189 words (3.4 pages)

The Next Christendom : The Coming Of Global Christianity Essay

- “The Next Christendom” Book Review by Joseph Vigilante “The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity” by Philip Jenkins examines the change in global Christianity from being a predominantly Euro-American religion and tracks its fast spread in the South. The thesis of the book is that Christianity has dramatically shifted South to the continents of Africa, Asia, and Latin America and is rapidly growing in those regions while declining in the West. Throughout the book, Jenkins examines how Christianity as we know it is drastically changing....   [tags: Christianity, Islam, Christendom, Western culture]

Better Essays
1884 words (5.4 pages)

Essay on The Song of Roland and Ywain

- The Song of Roland and Ywain: A Changing Society as Viewed Through Its Literature When comparing the epic poem of The Song of Roland to the romantic literature of Ywain, the differences between the early medieval period and the high medieval period become evident. Both The Song of Roland and Ywain depicts the societies from which each story derives its fundamental characteristics. Through close observation, one is able to see the shifts in customs and mentality that make the move from the epic to the romance possible....   [tags: essays research papers]

Better Essays
2742 words (7.8 pages)

Essay about Camera Lucida, By Roland Barthes

- Roland Barthes, Camera Lucida, explores the stream of consciousness Barthes experiences when viewing his Winter Garden photo. The photo depicts his mother as a child and how Barthes decides to handle the understanding of this image. For this essay my Winter Garden photo will be titled The Father. This essay will be an attempt to work through the ideas and vocabulary used by Barthes in understanding his own photo. In 1995 a photo was taken of my father and myself, referred further as The Father....   [tags: Photography, Photograph, Roland Barthes, Image]

Better Essays
1832 words (5.2 pages)

Comparing Song of Roland, The Life Story of Pavlichenko, and The Prince

- Comparing Song of Roland, The Life Story of Pavlichenko, and The Prince Abstract: By evaluating different approaches of rulers to their vassals, in The Song of Roland and The Life Story of Pavlichenko, Matvey Rodionych, it is shown that Machiavelli made a mistake when he came up with his general rule: “It is much safer to be feared than loved, if hi is to fail in one of the two.” (Machiavelli, 54). Darwin explained in his theory of natural selection, which primarily explains evolution, however also can be applied to any other situation in which sustainability is the primary concern as in ruler – vassal relationships, that only the strongest survived....   [tags: Comparison Compare Contrast Essays]

Free Essays
2734 words (7.8 pages)

Comparing Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and The Song of Roland Essay

- Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and The Song of Roland In mythological Europe, knightly heroes abounded whereever one could choose to roam. There are hundreds of tales of knights who embodied the concept of chivalry, slew huge dragons, slew legions of foes in single combat, and still made it home in time for dinner. Of all these tales, ballads and poems, a few have risen to the fore front of the genre as an example for the rest of the stories to follow. I will be comparing the positive and negative personality traits of two heroes from the famous poems "Sir Gawain and the Green Knight" and "The Song of Roland." On the lighter side, both Gawa...   [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]

Better Essays
880 words (2.5 pages)

The Theme Of Father/son Relationships In Beowulf & The Song Of Roland Essay examples

- The Theme of Father/Son Relationships in Beowulf & The Song of Roland The representation of father-son type relationships in early Medieval literary works is a key theme early authors used to give their works more depth and meaning. Two works that use the theme of father-son relationships are Beowulf and The Song of Roland. In Beowulf, the relationship between Hrothgar and Beowulf is one in which there is no actual blood father-son tie, but the two characters take on all the characteristics of a real father son relationship....   [tags: Epic of Beowulf Essays]

Free Essays
1644 words (4.7 pages)