This book investigates the troubled relationship between medieval studies and medievalism. Acknowledging that the medieval and medievalism are mutually constitutive, and that their texts can be read using similar strategies, it argues that medieval writers offer powerful models for the ways in which contemporary desire determines the constitution of the past. This desire can not only connect us with the past but can reconnect readers in the present with the lost history of what may be called the 'medievalism of the medievals'. In other words, to come to terms with the history of the medieval is to understand that it already offers us a model of how to relate to the past. -- .
Thomas A. Prendergast is Professor of English at the College of Wooster Stephanie Trigg is Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor of English Literature at the University of Melbourne -- .
Introduction: Medieval and medievalist practice 1 The space of time and the medievalist imaginary 2 Wonderful things 3 Fear, error and death: The abjection of the Middle Ages 4 Loving the past 5 Discontent in the age of mechanical reproduction Bibliography Index -- .