Becker, William
September 1952
New Republic;9/1/52, Vol. 127 Issue 9, p19
This article presents information on the book "The Canterbury Tales," by Geoffrey Chaucer. Chaucer is an especially useful poet to read today: his sanity, his robust joy, his expansive simplicity can teach one much in an age of neuroticism, febrile despair and crabbed complexity. Chaucer's art has no business being the special province of scholars. Composed in the racy English of everyday fourteenth century speech and designed not so much to be read as to be read aloud to sizable audiences, these poems have more in common with the dramatic verse of the Elizabethans than they have with any other non-dramatic English verse. No other poetry, in English so urgently demands to be heard. And it could well be argued that modernization is the only way to fulfill the demand.


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