I have been kind of playing around with the Laud manuscript (which I may get an amazing opportunity to help code this summer… we shall see how this all works out), and came up with an idea about its current state.
I haven’t fully explored this idea, but I have been encouraged to pursue it by a few people. It all started when a friend was working on a paper arguing the unification of the manuscript. I loved her idea, but instead of a unification, I began seeing a distinction of narratives. My intention is to trace the division of the manuscript between the SEL and the secular pieces (prominently King Horn and Havelok the Dane), using the Debate Between the Body and Soul as the justification for the thematics of the entire work in an attempt to answer the question of why these pieces were specifically chosen to be brought together (with the implication that the decision was not “random” at all).
Obviously it was an editorial decision to conjoin these parts, and while the justification behind this decision remains unknown, reasons for it can be deduced from the material, which is exactly what I propose to do. Unfortunately this is going to have to wait until the rest of my projects are done since I realize I am working on various things at once and can only fully devote myself to so many at one time. But since this blog has always been my place for exploring my different ideas (academic, personal, etc), I suppose this would be the best place for announcing my intentions for now. I will probably try to do something with this next spring.