Discourse Analysis Connections

In light of Phillips and Jorgensen’s argument about the points that the discursive analysis should include (96), I found in Stephen Finley’s essay “Endeles Knot” some connections as he analyzed Sir Gawain and the Green night from two side, the poem itself and the reader side which is what the first point of the argument indicated. Finley argued that “our discomfort as readers with this ending, one often felt but seldom expressed, has helped to generate critical controversy. This ending should appeal to us” (451). Finley also conducted a close analysis of the language and lexical use in the poem which linked to second point of Phillips and Jorgensen’s argument. As Finley illustrated, “Gawain points to the past, twice. What of the “Now”? The “Now,” I suggest, is the time we need in order to have the sense of an ending-the exposure of the world of the poem to the present time. The “Now,” however, only links the reiterated past of the “before this” to the future “blysse” of God’s kingdom”: “Now þat bere þe croun of þorne / He bryng the ground between past and future, the time of the present that might suggest to us how to understand the great concluding motives in the poem of quest, penance, self-knowledge, reintegration, and community?” (455).

For the last point of Phillips and Jorgensen’s argument “the consequences this (discourse) has for the broader socio-cultural practice” (96). Poet Simon Armitage in the BBC Documentary went to see and investigate about the story and places where sir Gawain went about 600 years ago. Through the documentary video, he talked about the legend behind the green night who after cutting his head he put it back again like nothing happened to him. As he mentioned, it is about religious story of a girl whose head fell in the blessed water and ended up in the spot, then Sam put her head back on. Also, he went to ask some the people who live in that village about some middle English words. This, for me, demonstrates a significant connection with the socio-culture and its consequences.


BBC Documentary. (n.d.). Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=74glI1lg1CQ

Finley, S. (n.d.). Endeles Knot. Closure and Indeterminacy in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight , 445-458.

Griffin, G. (2014). Discourse Analysis. In Research Methods for English Studies. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh University Press.