Reno tried again to take apart the scholarly introduction. He knew that he wasn’t going to master it but he wanted to give himself at least another moment before he was required to talk about the text during class (or whenever). This time, instead of trying in vein to concentrate in his dorm, he found a cubicle in the library; at least in here, he wouldn’t have to hear his roomie’s clearly audible muttering as he looked over his own homework.

The introduction wasn’t overly dense, which was good. In fact, the long biography section on Charny’s life broke up the more packed parts on chivalry and romance. Without that part, it seemed that the introduction wasn’t quite as long than one’s first glance would suggest. The tiny font, though, didn’t help in determining how long one would be reading.

About forty minutes passed. Forty minutes of reading, re-reading, skimming, and contemplation. Sure, he didn’t get too much done, but he did at least formulate some questions that he would want to answer for next time.

[These questions have been reformulated for you, dear reader, to answer; comment your answers below if you wish to take part.]


(1) To what degree did Charny’s life experience influence his understanding of knighthood and chivalry?

(2) Was Charny’s writings on chivalry as foundational as the scholarly introduction claims? (Use the Internet to complete some basic research on other medieval chivalrous theoreticians).

(3) Off the top of your head, does the actual— scholarly— understanding of chivalry depart from any previous understanding that he had from popular culture? If so, then how?

(4) Is chivalry something that could be replicated today? Why or why not? Provide some evidence for your answer.

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