The Cultural World in "Beowulf"
Beowulf is one of the most important poems in Old English and the first major poem in a European vernacular language. It dramatizes behaviour in a complex social world - a martial, aristocratic world that we often distort by imposing on it our own biases and values. In this cross-disciplinary study, John Hill looks at Beowulf from a comparative ethnological point of view. He provides a thorough examination of the socio-cultural dimensions of the text and compares the social milieu of Beowulf to that of similarly organized cultures. Through examination of historical analogs in northern Europe and France, as well as past and present societies on the Pacific rim in Southeast Asia, a complex and extended society is uncovered and an astonishingly different Beowulf is illuminated.
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Feud Settlements in Beowulf
The Temporal World in Beowulf
The Jural World in Beowulf
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Anglo-Saxon avenge battle becomes behaviour Beowulf Beowulf poet bilateral Cain characters Christian comitatus context creature cultural D.H. Green Danes Danish dark death dragon dynastic especially ethical exchange father favour feud Finn episode Freawaru Freudian functions Geats genealogies Germanic gift giving given God's Grendel Grendel's mother groups hall Heardred Heathobards Hengest Heorot Heremod heroic world Hildeburh hoard honour Hrethel Hroth Hrothgar Hrothulf Hrunting Hunferth Hygd Hygelac in-laws involved jural juridical kindred king kingdom kinship kinsmen lord loyalty marriage Max Gluckman monster fights myth noble notes offer Old English one's Onela Ongentheow pagan past peace perhaps poem poem's poet's psychological queen raid reciprocal reflect relation relationship retainers revenge reward says Scyld sense settle settlement slaying social society speech strife suggests super-ego Swedes sword terror Tiu's treasure values victory violence Waegmunding warrior Wealhtheow wergeld West Saxon Wiglaf Woden World in Beowulf wulf wulf's Wulfgar