Medievalism in A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones

March 2018
214 pages
21.6x13.8 cm
BISAC LIT011000, SOC011000

Medievalism in A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones

Shiloh Carroll

eBook for Handhelds
Game of Thrones is famously inspired by the Middle Ages - but how "authentic" is the world it presents? This volume offers different angles to the question.
One of the biggest attractions of George R.R. Martin's high fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire, and by extension its HBO television adaptation, Game of Thrones, is its claim to historical realism. The author, the directors and producers of the adaptation, and indeed the fans of the books and show, all lay claim to Westeros, its setting, as representative of an authentic medieval world. But how true are these claims? Is it possible to faithfully represent a time so far removed from our own in time and culture? And what does an authentic medieval fantasy world look like?
This book explores Martin's and HBO's approaches to and beliefs about the Middle Ages and how those beliefs fall into traditional medievalist and fantastic literary patterns. Examining both books and programme from a range of critical approaches - medievalism theory, gender theory, queer theory, postcolonial theory, and race theory - Dr Carroll analyzes how the drive for historical realism affects the books' and show's treatment of men, women, people of colour, sexuality, and imperialism, as well as how the author and showrunners discuss these effects outside the texts themselves.

Shiloh Carroll teaches in the writing center at Tennessee State University.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Martin and Medievalist Fantasy
Chivalric Romance and Anti-Romance
Masculinity, Femininity, and Gender Relations
Sex and Sexuality
Postcolonialism, Slavery, and the Great White Hope
Adaptation and Reception

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