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Author Sullivan, Karen, 1964- author

Title The danger of romance : truth, fantasy, and Arthurian fictions / Karen Sullivan
Published Chicago ; London : The University of Chicago Press, 2018
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource
Contents Romance and its reception -- Merlin: magic, miracles, and marvels -- King Arthur: history and fiction -- Lancelot of the lake: the morality of adultery -- The quest of the holy grail: the sacredness of the secular -- Truth and the imagination: from romance to children's fantasy
Summary Romance has traditionally been dismissed by critics for failing to represent the world as it is, and yet it has been embraced by readers attracted to its distinctive depiction of reality. Given the pleasure it has afforded readers over the centuries, is it possible that it is expressing a truth unrecognized by realist genres? The Arthurian literature of the Middle Ages, Karen Sullivan argues, consistently ventriloquizes the criticisms that were being made of romance at the time and implicitly defends itself against those criticisms. The danger of romance shows that the conviction that ordinary reality is the only reality is itself an assumption, and one that can blind those who hold it to the extraordinary phenomena that exist around them, demonstrating that that which is rare, ephemeral, and inexplicable is no less real than that which is commonplace, long-lasting, and easily accounted for. If romance continues to appeal to audiences today, whether in its Arthurian prototype or in its more recent incarnations, it is because it confirms the perception - or even the hope - of a beauty and truth in the world that realist genres deny
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Arthur, King -- In literature
Lancelot (Legendary character) -- In literature
Merlin (Legendary character) -- In literature
Arthur, King.
Lancelot (Legendary character)
Merlin (Legendary character)
Arthurian romances -- Appreciation
Arthurian romances -- History and criticism
French literature -- To 1500 -- History and criticism
Genre/Form Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 022654043X