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Luisa Nardini, Director MBE 3.602, Mailcode E3100, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-2069

Sandra B Straubhaar

Senior Lecturer Ph.D., German Studies and Humanities, Stanford University

MDV 392M • Old Norse

41575 • Fall 2013
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm BUR 232
(also listed as GER 393K )
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DESCRIPTION:

This course is intended as an introduction to the language of the Viking Age and medieval Scandinavia, with attention given to comparative Germanic grammar and vocabulary.

Work will begin with basic noun and verb paradigms and simple artificial sentences, quickly proceeding to authentic texts drawn from the following:

Sagas of the Icelanders (example: Njáls saga); Legendary Sagas (example: Völsunga saga); Eddic Poetry (example: Hávamál); Runic Inscriptions; Snorri Sturluson’s Prose Edda; Chronicles and Histories; Skaldic Poetry; and Early Law Codes.

“The Old Northern tongue (called Icelandic because it is only in Iceland that it survives in its purity as a living language, and because it was Icelanders that built up its classic literature of prose and verse) more than any other language resembles our own.”

-- E. R. Eddison,1930

Prerequisites:

No specific language-proficiency isrequired, but a good background in grammar (ex: case systems  and subject- vs. object-pronouns) will be extremely helpful.  Knowledge of the German language is a plus.

TEXTS:

(Buy these two)

Gordon & Taylor, Introduction to Old Norse (Oxford)

Geir T. Zoëga, Concise Dictionary of Old Icelandic*  (U. of Toronto)

 

There will be supplementary material (in Xerox form) from:

            Michael Barnes, A New Introduction to Old Norse (Viking Society, 1999)

            Valfells and Cathey, Old Icelandic: An Introductory Course (Oxford, 1981)           

 

(*Just to get this out of the way: Old Norse = Old Icelandic.  Pick one.  Or don’t.)

 GRADING:

There will be a short weekly quiz every Friday, initially based entirely on some aspect of the material we have covered during the week.  By the end of the semester we will almost certainly be trying some “cold translations.”

 

Publications

Straubhaar, S.B. (2007) Review of Thor Ewing, Viking Clothing (Stroud, Gloucestershire: Tempus, 2006). Medieval Clothing and Textiles Medieval Clothing and Textiles
Straubhaar, S.B. (2007) Review of Mark T. Hooker, A Tolkien Mathomium (Durham, North Carolina: Llyfrawr, 2006). Tolkien Studies Tolkien Studies
Straubhaar, S.B. (2007) From Atli to Aguirre: Remarks on Fashion and Weapon Size. In M. Nagy (Ed.), Old Norse Death and Dying. Kalamazoo, MI: Medieval Institute Publications.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2006) “’Mord och Hor’: Skewing the Canon?”. B.A.S.I.S.: Ballads and Songs – International Studies 2 Trier: B.A.S.I.S.: Ballads and Songs – International Studies 2.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2006, September) Eight entries (Easterlings; Gondor; Goths; Huns; Jordanes; Middle-earth: Men; Roman History; Saracens and Moors). Routledge.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2006) Review of David Salo, A Gateway to Sindarin (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2004). Tolkien Studies Tolkien Studies
Straubhaar, S.B. (2005) Review of Brian Murdoch and Malcolm Read, eds. Early Germanic Literature and Culture. Camden House History of German Literature, Vol. 1 (Rochester: Camden House, 2004). Colloquia Germanica Colloquia Germanica
Straubhaar, S.B. (2005) An Extraordinary Sense of Powerful Restlessness: Nora Kershaw Chadwick, 1891-1972. In J. Chance (Ed.), Women Medievalists in the Academy (pp.366-379). Madison: Women Medievalists in the Academy, ed. Jane Chance. University of Wisconsin Press.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2005, September) Wrapped in a Blue Mantle: Fashions for Icelandic Slayers?. Medieval Clothing and Textiles; The Boydell Press, 1(1), 53-65.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2005, September) “Gilraen’s Linnod: Function, Genre, Prototypes.”. Tolkien Studies; West Virginia University Press, 2, 235-244.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2005) Review of Alan Keele, In Search of the Supernal: Pre-Existence, Eternal Marriage, and Apotheosis in German Literary, Operatic, and Cinematic Texts. Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought
Straubhaar, S.B. (2004) Myth, Late Roman History, and Multiculturalism in Tolkien. In J. Chance (Ed.), Tolkien and the Invention of Myth (pp.101-117). Lexington: Tolkien and the Invention of Myth, ed. Jane Chance. University of Kentucky Press.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2004, September) Three entries (Jóreithr, Jórunn, Steinunn). Women in the Middle Ages: An Encyclopedia. Ed. Katharina Wilson and Nadia Margolis. I, 493-495.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2003, September) “A Birth Certificate for Sweden, Packaged for Postmoderns: Jan Guillou’s Templar Trilogy.”. The Year’s Work in Medievalism 17., 17, 64-75.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2002) “Ambiguously Gendered, Not Only Grammatically: The Skalds Jórunn, Authr and Steinunn.”. In K. Swenson & S.M. Anderson (Eds.), Cold Counsel: Women of Old Norse Literature and Myth (pp.261-271). New York: Cold Counsel: Women of Old Norse Literature and Myth. Ed. Karen Swenson and Sarah M. Anderson..
Straubhaar, S.B. (2002, September) Six biographical entries (Brunhilde, Eyvindr Finnsson skáldaspillir, Egill Skallagrímsson, Harald (Bluetooth) Gormsson, Einarr Skúlason and Sturla Thórtharson). Medieval Europe and the Rise of Christendom, 500-1300. Ed. Jana K. Schulman. Greenwood Press.
Straubhaar, S.B. (2002) Birgitta Birgersdotter (St. Birgitta of Sweden). In L. Churchill & J. Jeffrey (Eds.), Women Writing Latin (pp.309-318). New York: Women Writing Latin. Ed. Laurie Churchill and Jane Jeffrey. Routledge..
Straubhaar, S.B. (2001, September) Nasty, Brutish and Large: Cultural Difference and Otherness in the Figuration of the Trollwomen of the Fornaldar Sögur. Scandinavian Studies; Brigham Young University Press, 73(2), 105-124.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1999, September) “Gustav Storm’s Heimskringla as a Norwegian Nationalist Genesis Narrative.”. Tijdschrift voor Skandinavistiek, 20(2), 101-126.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1999) Review of Hilda R. E. Davidson, Roles of the Northern Goddess (London: Routledge, 1998). Scandinavian Studies Scandinavian Studies
Straubhaar, S.B. (1998) Review of Jenny Jochens, Old Norse Images of Women (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1996). German Quarterly German Quarterly
Straubhaar, S.B. (1997, September) “Holberg’s Apology for Zenobia of Palmyra and Catherine I.”. Scandinavica; Page Bros., 36(2), 169-188.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1993) Review of Ingi Sigurthsson, ed. Upplysingin á Íslandi. Scandinavian Studies Scandinavian Studies
Straubhaar, S.B. (1993) Review of Lena Rangström, ed. Riddarlek och tornerspel: Sverige-Europa (Tournaments and the Dream of Chivalry). Scandinavian Studies Scandinavian Studies
Straubhaar, S.B. (1993, September) “Skáldkonur.”. Medieval Scandinavia: An Encyclopedia. Ed. Philip Pulsiano, et al. Garland, 594-596.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1991, September) Jóreithr í Mithjumdal. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Ed. Katharina Wilson. Garland, 1158-1159.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1991, September) Steinunn Refsdóttir. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Ed. Katharina Wilson. Garland, 1190-1191.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1991, September) Jórunn skáldmær. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Ed. Katharina Wilson. Garland, 837-838.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1987) “The Forgotten Skáldkonur and Their Place in Early Scandinavian Culture.”. In J.R. Rothschild (Ed.), Creativity, Influence, Imagination: The Worlds of Medieval Women (pp.14-23). Morgantown: Creativity, Influence, Imagination: The Worlds of Medieval Women. Ed. Judith Rice Rothschild. University of West Virginia Press.
Straubhaar, S.B. (1978) An Arthurian Remnant in an Appalachian Nonsense Ballad. Ballads and Ballad Research: Selected Papers of the International Conference on Nordic and Anglo- American Ballad Research, University of Washington, Seattle, May 2-6, 1977. Ed. Patricia L. Conroy. University of Washington Press Seattle: Ballads and Ballad Research: Selected Papers of the International Conference on Nordic and Anglo- American Ballad Research, University of Washington, Seattle, May 2-6, 1977. Ed. Patricia L. Conroy. University of Washington Press.
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