- Publisher: Cambridge University Press
- Online publication date: August 2009
- Print publication year: 1990
- Online ISBN: 9780511519550
- Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511519550
The songs of the troubadour poets of the south of France were a pervasive influence in the development of the European lyric (and indeed other genres) from the twelfth century to the Renaissance and beyond. Much troubadour poetry is on the topic of love, and is composed from a first-person position. This book is a full-length study of this first-person subject position in its relation to language and society. Using theoretical approaches where appropriate, Sarah Kay discusses to what extent this first person is a 'self' or 'character', and how far it is self-determining. Dr Kay draws on a wide range of troubadour texts, and provides close readings of many of them, as well as translating all medieval quotations into English in order to make the discussion accessible to the non-specialist. Her book will be of interest both to scholars of medieval literature, and to anybody investigating subjectivity in lyric poetry.