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( Duty and responsibility) in (Song of Roland) ISBN 9780451528575) - Book Report/Review Example

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It is a heroic poem that talks about the Battle of Roncesvalles in 778 at the time of Charlemagne’s reign. The story was written in the mid 11th century and is…
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( Duty and responsibility) in (Song of Roland) ISBN 9780451528575)

Download file to see previous pages... The story provides a strong historical examination and background of major themes of the story. It is essentially one of the old inexhaustible stories, whose main themes include Good and Evil, Vassalage, the Benevolent God, the Will of God and Man’s Place, as well as Duty and Responsibility.
Several critics try to interpret Roland as having overweening pride because he refused to call for help during his last battle. Some scholars, including Sarah Kay, maintain that Roland is judged improperly when his character is evaluated by the modern standards. They argue that Roland’s character was beyond reproach according to the ideology and habits during his times. The critics use this story as a way of studying the history of ethics, as well as its evolution over the centuries.
Duty and Responsibility represent one of the key values of the poem. They are closely related to the themes of the Vassalage and the Will of God and Man’s Place. It is for duty and responsibility, not war or love, that Charlemagne continued battling against the Islam forces.
It is out of sense of duty and responsibility that Roland fights and struggles to death at Rencesvals. Some have tried fitting the Rencesvals massacre into the patterns of classical tragedy. Roland appears to be a tragic hero. His pride makes him call Charlemagne’s troops before it gets late. Roland dies a martyr and the significance seems to lie less in his flaws. The passion with which he fights for Christendom saves him. It is the duty and responsibility that caused Charlemagne to avenge Roland’s death (Harrison, 1970, p.87).
Duty and responsibility in the poem are often linked to love. The bonds that existed between Roland and Charlemagne were marked by deep affection and respect. This was also evident between Roland and his men. It also ascribes to passion by how he describes the moaning, weeping and even fainting of some of his bravest characters. It is their ability and capacity ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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