medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

> There is certainly secular literature in medieval
> Iceland, and
> even "secular" or perhaps "secularized" versions of
> some

The thread started with me.

Interesting you mention Iceland, I think if there is
anything that is every remotely secular in the middle
ages it's Icelandic because of the historiographic
charater that seems (and I would love a contrary
opinion) removed from the exegetical mode. By secular
I mean, not entirely ruled and guided by the Christian
meta-narrative. Most of the continental vernacular
literature in the 12th and 13th centuries from the
Arthurian Material to the chanson de geste are ruled
soteriological structures and could be considered as
part of a bid for lay supremacy or at least
participation in the discussion of spiritual matters
-- so they are not secular -- i.e. they are not
involved in establishing or promoting a consciousness
removed from the prevailing christian world view. In
fact, in many ways Alanus ab Insulus' oevre is more
"secular" than Chretien's  -- or how about this for a
radical statement to discuss:

Secular writing and reading could not exist in the
European Middle Ages because they cannot be divorced
from exegetical practice.

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