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Essay on Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as Modern Fantasy

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Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as Modern Fantasy

 

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, written by an unknown author in the 14th century, can be called a timeless work of poetry. It exudes a certain fantastic quality that, despite its age of over 500 years, still appeals to modern audiences. Because of this application to all eras, would it be reasonable to state that this poem could be classified with modern fantasy fiction? Because of the similarities in plot and style with so much modern fantasy, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight could be placed in the same category with that genre, though the uses of doing so are questionable.

 

In plot, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight has elements which are similar to much modern fantasy. Its emphasis on chivalry (in the values of Sir Gawain's character through the entire poem) is similar to contemporary High Fantasy, a subgenre filled with such present top industry names as Robert Jordan and Terry Brooks. For an even greater glimpse of the popular appeal of King Arthur's court, Marion Zimmer Bradley's retelling of the Arthurian...


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