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Honor, Love, and Isolde in Gottfried's Tristan

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Kristine K. Sneeringer

As the concept of the individual arose during the Middle Ages, personal honor evolved from an external attribute to an interior one. This book examines honor in Gottfried's Tristan in relation to love, sexuality, the role of the artist, and Isolde, as well as identifies certain structures that carry the poet's concept of honor. These structures allow for the transcending of earthly dimensions into sublimity. Isolde's sexuality transcends earthly love to join in the mystical union of the soul with Christ. This is Gottfried's highest notion of honor.