In this Book

summary
In this book, Jennifer Garrison examines literary representations of the central symbol of later medieval religious culture: the Eucharist. In contrast to scholarship that depicts mainstream believers as enthusiastically and simplistically embracing the Eucharist, Challenging Communion: The Eucharist and Middle English Literature identifies a pervasive Middle English literary tradition that rejects simplistic notions of eucharistic promise. Through new readings of texts such as Piers Plowman, A Revelation of Love, The Book of Margery Kempe, and John Lydgate's religious poetry, Garrison shows how writers of Middle English often take advantage of the ways in which eucharistic theology itself contests the boundaries between the material and the spiritual, and how these writers challenge the eucharistic idea of union between Christ and the community of believers.

Table of Contents

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  1. Cover
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  1. Half Title, Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Introduction: Eucharistic Poetics and Christian Community
  2. pp. 1-18
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  1. 1. Resisting the Fantasy of Identification in Robert Mannyng’s Handlyng Synne
  2. pp. 19-50
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  1. 2. Devotional Submission and the Pearl-Poet
  2. pp. 51-80
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  1. 3. Christ’s Allegorical Bodies and the Failure of Community in Piers Plowman
  2. pp. 81-104
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  1. 4. Julian of Norwich’s Allegory and the Mediation of Salvation
  2. pp. 105-131
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  1. 5. The Willful Surrender of Eucharistic Reading in Nicholas Love and Margery Kempe
  2. pp. 132-158
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  1. 6. John Lydgate and the Eucharistic Poetic Tradition: The Making of Community
  2. pp. 159-181
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  1. Conclusion
  2. pp. 182-186
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 187-202
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 203-208
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  1. Further Series Titles
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