Today we began some pre-Beowulf reading. We discussed how British culture changed in 450 AD and again in 597 AD as the Norse (vikings) invaded and their religious culture mingled with the growing Christianity.
Here are the notes in case you need more details: Brit Lit context clues. Just use the 450 AD and 597 AD slides.
To really see this change, we read the poem “The Seafarer,” which shows the blending of Norse and Christian cultures. Here’s the poem if you need it.
Tonight, and in the comments, I’d like you to answer these two:
1) Where do we see elements of both 450 AD era British religious/cultural ideas and post-597 AD British religious and cultural ideas?
2) Describe the two journeys happening here. The seafarer talks about the hardship of a life on the sea, but what figurative journey is he on as well? How do they compare to each other?
If anyone doesn’t have the poem I’ve attached it as a word doc here: The Seafarer
In the comments section of this post, answer the following question before midnight Sunday night. As always, use evidence from the text to support your ideas (to cite something just put the line number in parenthesis). As for length, this is a two part question that asks you to address the idea that there are actually two journeys going on here, so I’m guessing you’ll need between two to three solid paragraphs with evidence in them.
To help you answer the question, keep the context (the time and place it was written) of the poem in mind. Use the blog post/your notes from yesterday to help you with this if you’ve forgotten the specifics.
Don’t forget to leave your name on your comment.
We’ve discussed the ways in which the poem mixes elements of early (450 AD) Anglo-Saxon culture and later (post 597) Anglo-Saxon culture. Explain why the poet(s?) does this. Also, we know that the seafarer is on a literal journey, but what else might be going on figuratively speaking?