Rhetorical Analysis Of Sir Gawain And The Green Knight, Pearl, And Orfeo

Rhetorical Analysis Of Sir Gawain And The Green Knight, Pearl, And Orfeo

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Originally written as a medieval romance, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Orfeo translated by J.R.R Tolkien, has been the center attention for many literary critics. Depicted especially in “Laughter and Game in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” by Martin Stevens, the author argues that the playful nature of the games and the bright holiday atmosphere in the poem “may not be entirely out of order” since it is done so to mask the poem’s underlying concepts of tension, darkness, and sense of foreboding (Stevens). According to the author, the games seem to represent larger aspects of society in more distorted recreations. By first examining the vocabulary used by the poet to refer to such playful elements in the poem, Steven then proceeds to explain the types of plays and games that reevaluates the concept of literary romance in the late Medieval period. However, the most significant and interesting position that Steven provides is his evaluation of the Exchange of Gifts as it further develops the character of Sir Gawain and exposes his faults as an ideal knight.
Many of the games in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Orfeo occur exclusively during holidays, a setting which includes a rich vocabulary of laughter, game, and festivities, as argued by author, Martin Stevens. In order to defend his position on the significance of the games and the holiday spirit within the poem, Steven first suggests that everything from “the dual…deer and fox hunting, polite conversation, and even the pentangle” has been variously referred to as a sort of playful game (Stevens). The holidays Christmas and New Years is first introduced with banquets and gift giving as a respect for the holy days and devotion to God while “Al-hal-day...


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...ughter and Game in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,” Martin Stevens argues that “this pervasive reference to game, laughter, and festival is not accidental” like many denounce it to be, but actually of great purpose (Stevens). Since of the poem 's setting revolves around the medieval period on specific holidays and seasons, Stevens seek to defend his argument by first mentioning how the poet incorporates such festive elements into the text before describing the significance of two major games: the Beheading Games and the Exchange of Gifts. The playful spirit of the poem only hids more brooding details of sin, debasement, and failed tests of chastity and courage. Steven’s most remarkable justification, however, follows the play of the Exchange of Gifts that ultimately acts as a reference to one’s mortality, capable of mistakes and errors even in the best of knights.

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