Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Miller's Tale discussion topic

How has Chaucer made the tale "fit" the teller? In how many ways can we identify the precise nature of the relationship between the tale and its teller?

Specifically, let us consider the following:
• the Miller's choice of material (does the fabliau match what we know of the miller's personality?)
• methods and depth of characterization (how much do we know about each character? how "dimensional" are they? why?)
• use of key details (find examples of little choices in keeping with the miller's interests and character. what are the most interesting facts about each character, at least to the miller?)
• use of language (what words does the miller especially like? what examples of puns can you find?)
• sense of humor/ tone (which parts are intended humorously? what kind of humor is it? Is the miller making fun of any of his characters?)
• "fabliau justice" (do the characters get what they deserve? If not in our eyes, how about in the miller's system of justice?)
• in what way(s) does the Miller's Tale "quite" the Knight's Tale?