Chaucer Reading Langland: The House of Fame
Chaucer composed The House of Fame after reading the B version of PPl at the end of the 1370s. Each poem adopts, interrogates, and discards different genres in the search for an authoritative discourse. The identification of the poet with the dreamer in the “signatures” of Will and Geoffrey serve as transitional markers between narrative sections. Both dreamers dismiss the possibility of their fiction’s being subjected to authoritative interpretation. The power of the dream vision to generate narrative endlessly prevents either formal or hermeneutic resolution in each case.