Response [to Richard Barnes ‘Langland’s Stance and Style’], ‘Langland’s Stance and Style’]
Barnes’s method is at basis flawed, in that it substitutes for the difficulty of describing style the no less problematic definition of personality. WL may well have been aware of the association of biographical details with genre, and may have used personality traits as a kind of rhetorical figure. WL’s anger is not only with a world that creates misery, but with wretched people themselves. “While he knows that God sees the heart, he is also anxious not to be conned.”
YLS 9 (1995): 33-36.
Hughes, M. E. J.