Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Pratt on Alfred Book

The Political Thought of King Alfred the Great. By David Pratt. Cambridge:
CUP. 2007. xvi + 413pp. ISBN 978 0 521 80350 2. Also available as an e-book
and in Kindle format.

This book is a comprehensive study of political thought at the court of
King Alfred the Great (871-99). It explains the extraordinary burst of
learned activity focused on inventive translations from Latin into Old
English attributed to Alfred's own authorship. A full exploration of
context establishes these texts as part of a single discourse which placed
Alfred himself at the heart of all rightful power and authority. A major
theme is the relevance of Frankish and other European experiences, as
sources of expertise and shared concerns, and for important contrasts with
Alfredian thought and behaviour. Part I assesses Alfred's rule against West
Saxon structures, showing the centrality of the royal household in the
operation of power. Part II offers an intimate analysis of the royal texts,
developing far-reaching implications for Alfredian kingship, communication
and court culture. Comparative in approach, the book places Alfred's reign
at the forefront of wider European trends in aristocratic life.

1. Introduction
Part I: the West Saxon political order
2. Resources and extraction
3. Royal lordship and secular office-holding
4. Royal lordship and ecclesiastical office-holding
5. The articulation of power under King Alfred's predecessors
6. The impact of the vikings
Part II: Alfredian discourse and its efficacy
7. The field of Alfredian knowledge
8. The construction of Alfredian discourse
9. Alfredian technology: books and aedificia
10. The Hierdeboc as a treatise of power
11. The Domboc as a reorientation of royal law
12. Tribulation and triumph in the first fifty Psalms
13. The search for a satisfactory consolation
14. Seeing God as he is
15. Conclusion


Anonymous said...

well.. it's like I knew!

Anonymous said...

итак: мне понравилось! а82ч