Reading through the handout on knighthood, as well as the readings over the past couple of weeks and then the first half of the semester, I feel like there's been a lot of versatility and complexity to what does and does not constitute knightlyness. Recently, I watched the new movie of the Green Knight, and felt really alarmed and unsettled by how strongly the movie challenged and changed the way that I thought about knighthood, heroics, and Sir Gawain. Without diving into the ways the filmed changed things from the poem or the plot stuff, the major complex that I grappled with during and after watching the movie is what it means to be courageous, and what that is worth in the context of the text itself. What is the value of courage or honor if you die before you can utilize it to help others and how does this relate to knighthood? The movie also had lots of religious images and iconography, but felt to me like it distanced itself or made the connections to service in the name of God or for the church less clear. I liked and appreciated the commentary it had on class and other things, but the interpretation of Gawain (excellent acting and handsome actor aside) felt so counterintuitive from the characterization of him from all the texts that we've read that it literally changed the way I viewed the framework for chivalry and the Arthurian context entirely. I don't know that this is a bad thing, but it made me super aware of how strongly I identify and define these distinctions after all the texts that we've read and how concrete my ideas are without having deliberately constructed them for myself. The juxtaposition I think of a lot of those given values (like those described at various stages in the handout) to the critique offered in the film i watched just made it a lot more clear how strongly I have opinions on elements of the genre, and of characterizations that I did not expect to react to so viserally.
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