Undoing Babel: The Tower of Babel in Anglo-Saxon Literature

By Tristan Major

© 2018

The Tower of Babel narrative is one of the most memorable accounts of the Bible, and its interpretative potential has produced a vast array of literary adaptations.

Undoing Babel is the first extensive examination of the development of the Babel narrative amongst Anglo-Saxon authors from late antiquity to the eleventh century. Tristan Major’s illuminating and original insight into Anglo-Latin and Old English works, including the writings of Aldhelm, Bede, Alcuin, Ælfric, and Wulfstan, reveals the cultural ideologies and anxieties that transformed the Babel narrative. In doing so, Major argues that these Babel narratives provide a basis for understanding the world’s ethnic and linguistic diversity as well as a theological stimulus to evangelize non-Christian and non-European people. Undoing Babel highlights the depth of literary innovation in this period and disproves any notion of a single Anglo-Saxon reception of biblical sources.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Anglo-Saxon Series
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 312 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.0in x 9.3in
Product Formats

SaveUP TO 9239

Book Formats

SKU# SP004422

  • PUBLISHED FEB 2018

    From: $52.50

    Regular Price: $70.00

    ISBN 9781487500542
  • PUBLISHED FEB 2018

    From: $52.50

    Regular Price: $70.00

Quick Overview

Undoing Babel is the first extensive examination of the development of the Babel narrative amongst Anglo-Saxon authors from late antiquity to the eleventh century.

Undoing Babel: The Tower of Babel in Anglo-Saxon Literature

By Tristan Major

© 2018

The Tower of Babel narrative is one of the most memorable accounts of the Bible, and its interpretative potential has produced a vast array of literary adaptations.

Undoing Babel is the first extensive examination of the development of the Babel narrative amongst Anglo-Saxon authors from late antiquity to the eleventh century. Tristan Major’s illuminating and original insight into Anglo-Latin and Old English works, including the writings of Aldhelm, Bede, Alcuin, Ælfric, and Wulfstan, reveals the cultural ideologies and anxieties that transformed the Babel narrative. In doing so, Major argues that these Babel narratives provide a basis for understanding the world’s ethnic and linguistic diversity as well as a theological stimulus to evangelize non-Christian and non-European people. Undoing Babel highlights the depth of literary innovation in this period and disproves any notion of a single Anglo-Saxon reception of biblical sources.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Anglo-Saxon Series
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 312 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.0in x 9.3in
  • Reviews

    ‘Major’s Undoing Babel fills the gap between the patristic period and the later Middle Ages. Major engages deeply with a remarkably wide range of materials, from Old Testament scholarship to patristics to Anglo-Latin and Old English literature.’


    Francis Leneghan, Faculty of English, University of Oxford

    ‘While examining its earliest interpretations from Jewish and Christian commentators, Major presents a fascinating study of the Babel story in the literature of the Anglo-Saxons.’


    Daniel Anlezark, Dept. of English, University of Sydney
  • Author Information

    Tristan Major is an assistant professor in the Department of English Literature and Linguistics at Qatar University.
  • Table of contents

    Acknowledgements

    Genesis 10–11

    Introduction

    1 Early Jewish and Christian Antiquity

    2 Latin Christian Antiquity

    3 The Early Anglo-Saxon School at Canterbury

    4 Bede and Alcuin

    5 Alfred the Great and the Literature of his Reign

    6 The Tenth and Early Eleventh Centuries

    7 The Biblical Poems of Junius

    8 Conclusion

    Bibliography