ACMRS Lecture Series

The Chaucerian Multisensual
In this lecture, Dr. Newhauser will explore how we understand the world through the interplay of all our senses, filtered through our conscious attention, but especially the multisensual which has been far too little studied, especially in its literary and ethical dimensions. For medieval authors, the interaction of seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching laid bare a paradox that was both epistemological and moral. It could also express the synesthetic ineffability of the divine. But for Geoffrey Chaucer the multisensual articulated an otherworldly intensity of feeling that served as a frame around the world of narrative verisimilitude that he claimed as the field of his literary art.
Dr. Richard Newhauser
Dr. Richard Newhauser, Professor of English at Arizona State University, is a distinguished scholar of Middle English literature with particular concentration on the works of Chaucer and the Gawain-Poet. His research also includes the history of the moral tradition in medieval thought. His edited and co-edited works include A Supplement to Morton W. Bloomfield et al., 'Incipits of Latin Works on the Virtues and Vices, 1100-1500 A.D.'; Sin: Essays on the Moral Tradition in the Western Middle Ages, Variorum Collected Studies Series; and The Early History of Greed: The Sin of Avarice in Early Medieval Thought and Literature.

The Chaucerian Multisensual

Coor Hall, Room 4411