Deconstruction and the medieval indefinite article

The undecidable medievalism of Brian Helgeland's a Knight's Tale

Louise D'Arcens*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

1 Citation (Scopus)


Studies in medievalism have made inroads into questioning the forensic impulse to restore, know, and possess the medieval past. And yet many of these studies continue to exhibit anxiety about anachronism within medievalist texts, and persist in privileging the medieval 'original' as the 'transcendental signified' that determines what is permissible in medievalist adaptations. By examining Brian Helgeland's provocatively anachronistic film A Knight's Tale, we gain insight into the residual Platonism within studies of medievalist film, which continue to evaluate these films' fidelity to a medieval zeitgeist. A deconstructive approach to Helgeland's film, however, allows us to challenge the devaluation of the medievalist text and to treat both medieval and medievalist texts as co-originary collaborators in the process of meaning-making.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-98
Number of pages19
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

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