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Knights Tale British Lit Essay Sample

Knights Tale British Lit Pages
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A Knight’s Tale is a story about a peasant with the dream of becoming a knight and jousting. The movie is loosely based off of Geoffrey Chaucer’s story in The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer used 14th century society details that were used in the movie. Class structure, role of women, and the corruption that is evident in the church are similarities seen in the movie that are worthy of talking about.

Class structure was a very strong detail that was stressed in Chaucer’s tales and this detail is seen in the movie. Peasants like William are the lower class and his dream of being a knight is a class of nobility. William’s dream of jousting is something that only Knight’s can do. With William being a peasant, he can only watch. William’s change was very unlikely in Chaucer’s time. Knights in this time carried a lot of authority with their position and peasants have close to none. These points given in the movie are supported by Chaucer’s description of the 14th century.

Women were a very prominent aspect of a man’s life during the 14th century. The nobility held the most beautiful and prized women of this time period. In the movie, William meets a lovely woman named Jocelyn at one of his tournaments. To the other fighters, Jocelyn was seen as a prize and an object rather than an actual human being. At the beginning of the story, When William is transitioning to a knight, he tries to find a blacksmith to repair his armor and none of the men would do it. He goes to a woman and she is definitely seen as lower than everyone else even though she does the same job. These different aspects attribute to the portrayal of Chaucer’s tale in comparison with the movie.

In Chaucer’s time, the church was very corrupt. His tales spoke of Priests acting out and doing unholy things. There were stories about the priests drinking, being around women all the time, and even falsely using church money and their power. Jocelyn was being criticized by a priest about her being unholy and the priest is wearing rings and gold which really shows that he is unholy by not being a priest of integrity and honor for God. The Priests were not acting like they “should” be and this was a sign of corruption in Chaucer’s 14th century.

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