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Durham e-Theses
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Translation and Réécriture in the Middle Ages: Rewriting Merlin in the French and Italian Vernacular Traditions

CAMPBELL, LAURA,JANE (2011) Translation and Réécriture in the Middle Ages: Rewriting Merlin in the French and Italian Vernacular Traditions. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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Author-imposed embargo until 13 June 2019.

Abstract

This thesis will investigate the processes of translation and rewriting (réécriture) in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, through a study of the French and Italian Merlin corpus. In particular, it will focus upon the products of translation between vernacular languages, which, as a practice, displays a greater degree of heterogeneity than translations into the vernacular from Latin. Medieval translation will be studied through a comparative analysis of the story of Merlin’s conception in Robert de Boron’s Merlin and Paulino Pieri’s La Storia di Merlino, in addition to an examination of the translation of Merlin’s prophecies as recounted in the Prophecies de Merlin, the Storia and the Vita di Merlino. These instances of translation will be compared to and studied alongside the processes of intralingual réécriture. Rewriting within the French tradition will be investigated through an analysis of the interpretative transition from the Vulgate Estoire de Merlin to the Post-Vulgate Suite du Merlin; in particular, the reinterpretations of Merlin’s prophetic discourse and the character of Merlin’s lover, Viviane, will be examined. The study will take as its methodological basis the semiotic theory of Charles Sanders Peirce, particularly the concept of semiosis; this defines interpretation as an exchange of signs, through which meaning is transmitted and developed. In this way, the Merlin corpus will be regarded as a continuum of interpretation, through which the meaning of narratives is interpreted by other signs, thought patterns and extra-textual cultural discourses; more broadly, the whole medieval tradition of translation and réécriture will also be regarded as a part of this same continuum, displaying the same interpretative patterns.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:"medieval";"French";"Italian";"Merlin";"Peirce"
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Modern Languages and Cultures, School of
Thesis Date:2011
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:14 Apr 2011 16:12

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