ACADEMICS

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MaryLynn Saul

Professor

MaryLynn Saul is a professor of English and specializes in medieval literature, particularly Arthurian literature, as well as human rights, history of the English language, and feminist theory. She has published articles on courtly love and marriage practice in the 15th century, the character of Morgan le Fay, and on Arthurian films. She is currently working on articles about the TV show Pose and on the novels Invisible Man and The Sympathizer. She is the academic advisor for the Amnesty International student group.

Education

1995
The Ohio State University
English
AA
1988
The Ohio State University
English
AA
1986
The Ohio State University
English and Spanish Education
AA

Publications

  • Articles
Articles
“Patriarchal Marriage Practice and Courtly Love in Malory’s Le Morte Darthur,” Read More
Articles
“The Unholy Grail: Recasting the Grail Myth for an Unbelieving Age,” Read More
Articles
“Powerful Witches or Weak Damsels: Female Characters in Arthurian Films,” Read More
Articles
"Malory's Morgan le Fay: The Danger of Unrestrained Feminine Power," Read More

Courses

EN 303

Arthurian Literature


If you have seen a movie or read a book about King Arthur, you have probably had a few basic questions: Did King Arthur really exist? Where did the legend start? How many different versions are there? The course is designed to examine the second two questions (we will discuss the first briefly). We are going to work backwards in time, starting with Malory’s Le Morte Darthur, a major influence on future generations of writers of Arthurian literature, and work backwards in time to the earliest versions of the Arthurian legend. We will be proceding by themes or by characters (the quest of the holy grail, Tristan, Gawain). The bulk of our material is from the medieval period (pre-1500). These versions vary greatly in genre, focus, character depiction, and in the languages in which they were originally written. Some of the languages represented include English, Welsh, French, German, Latin, and Italian. Some of the genres represented include the Romance, the epic, and the chronicle. The genre and purpose of the text have a great influence of the depiction of the various characters represented, making Arthur, for example, merely background in one tale while a strong but flawed leader in another. There is usually not one answer to a question like, isn’t this true about such-and-such a character?
3 credits
EN 300

History of the English Language


Can you really spell the word “fish” as “ghoti” in English? If the plural of tooth is “teeth,” why isn’t the plural of booth “beeth”? If you say you “wrote” a letter, can you say you “bote” your tongue? Is there such a thing as a “gruntled” person or a “requited” love? The answers to some of these questions can be found by studying the history of the English language. The class will cover the development of English from its roots in Indo-European through Old English, Middle English, and Modern English. Some grammar of Old and Middle English will be studied, as well as transcription of sounds in Modern English. Along with regular exams, students will construct a language journal identifying changes or recent developments in the language. This course is particularly recommended for students in secondary education.
3 credits
EN 167

Literature and Human Rights


The purpose of the course is to explore various issues related to the concept of human rights through literature. Issues we will discuss include genocide, women’s rights, justice and punishment, political repression, torture, disability rights and methods of protesting human rights abuses. These issues extend all over the world, including the U.S. The cases extend through time up to the present day. To talk about human rights, we talk about abuse of human rights; therefore, the conversation is not usually a happy one. However, the hope is that by exposing the abuses and discussing what standards need to be upheld, that the abuses happening now will stop and abuses that happened in the past will be redressed. It is not a hopeless quest.
3 credits