Epic Heros

This week, we will read Beowulf, which was the first important work of English literature. Beowulf was composed around 700 CE by an unknown author(s) of Anglo-Saxon origin. The Angles and Saxons were Germanic tribes that had invaded England after the fall of the Roman Empire, conquered the native Britons, and settled there themselves. The Anglo-Saxons had a similar heritage to the tribes that appear in the Beowulf narrative: the Geats, Swedes, and Danes. The material for Beowulf had been in circulation for some time, and the actions take place in the 6th century – long after the Anglo-Saxons and Scandinavian people had invaded and settled Britain; however, Beowulf is set in Scandinavia before the migration. As such, it records the cultures and values of a bygone era when people rallied around strong kings, who would protect their tribes from danger and demanded loyalty and bravery from their subjects, who were then repaid with treasure from war. The poem itself was written in Old English, a Germanic language that evolved slowly into the English now spoken combined with the influence of Latin and French after the Normans conquered the Anglo-Saxons in 1066. Fun fact: Beowulf was not regarded as an important work of literature until the early twentieth century, thanks largely to the efforts of JRR Tolkien!
• Identify the major similarities and differences among Beowulf and our other epics.
• Understand the historical and literary background of Beowulf.
• Gain a clearer conception of the epic hero.
• Perform a close reading of Beowulf, paying careful attention to its themes, characterization, and artistry.
• View “Introduction to Beowulf” uploaed notes from this just was about Beowulf
• Read Beowulf uploaded section called Beowulf use this readings to write diccussion
• Watch clip on YouTube Beowulf (2007) – Slaying the Dragon from movie clips via YouTube

Instruction for Week Discussion Beowulf:
Discussion: Watch the Video on Introduction to Beowulf and read all the pages from the uploaded book Beowulf.

My discussion needs to be 150-250 words using two direct quotes from the readings above. If my discussion post can be done by March 8th, and when I upload mine, I will be able to see a classmate’s post. The classmate’s post needs to be approximately 100 words and needs to be done by March 12th. Make sure the quotes and writing are from the Reading book Beowulf that was uploaded. This must be original and not plagiarized and will have to be turned in to turnit.com and others.

Choose one of the following questions and write a well-developed response of 150-250 words. Your response should offer analysis (i.e., what you think the text means in relation to the idea (s) from the discussion question) rather than summary (i.e., writing what happens in the text), and you should include at least one direct quote from the reading that you will use to explain your answer. Your response will earn the full 10 points if you submit the response on time, provide a clear answer to the question, include a quote to support your answer, offer analysis to explain how the evidence supports your position, and respond to a classmate’s post by the deadline. For each missing component, I will deduct two points.
• How does Beowulf reflect Anglo-Saxon values?
• How do the actions of Beowulf expand our idea of what it means to be a hero?
• How does the text offer a critique of warrior cultures?
• How does the clip from the film version of Beowulf differ from that scene in the book?

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