11.6.08

Sir Gawain Against Individualism

Mark Amesse has posted this gem on Durandal

Sir Gawain Against Individualism
By M.D. Amesse

The tales of Arthur and his Table Knights, Charlemagne and his Peers, to the knight these works were not just poems and works of art, though they most assuredly are that, they were and are manuals of chivalry. Thence we see Geoffroi De Charny[1], though inappropriately, appealing to Lancelot in his Book of Chivalry when he defends courtly love. The early authors, not infrequently churchmen, were conscious of the instruction they were giving.

Whether it is art imitating life, or whether it be something more sinister, our modern characters show little of the heroic, and great deal of the weak and ghastly. The modern “hero” has no control over his own passions; he is seen as heroic on account of his ability to accomplish his will by force, his autonomy from all, and his penchant for and success at amorous conquests. The modern “hero” is in fact a weak and vain man. Not so with the stories of old, and it is time for us to recover the great literature and heroes from the past.

Through the magnificent works of literature, you can associate with the great minds, the noble hearts, and shining characters of all history. Saints and heroes of hundreds of years offer you there knowledge and companionship on the great shelves of libraries. Hence one can form in himself the best of all characters.[2]More

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