Bucknell UP (Associated University Press)
This essay argues that a fuller understanding of some cultural systems contributing to medieval spirituality in the early middle ages, transmitted to us for the most part through patristic writings, opens up different possibilities for late 20th-century readers' interpretation of the cycles and change in Beowulf, especially the poem's ending. Competing with the apocalyptic view is the possibility that dramatic reversals continue--for better and for worse--beyond Beowulf's death, beyond the end of the poem, beyond the poet's death, the audience's death, and the reader's death--until the end of time--in ways that seem meaningless unless readers provide their own understanding of the patterns.
Manuscript, Narrative, Lexicon: Essays on Literary and Cultural Transmission in Honor of Whitney F. Bolton
Robert Boenig, Kathleen Davis
Brown, Phyllis "Cycles and Change in Beowulf." Manuscript, Narrative, Lexicon: Essays on Literary and Cultural Transmission in Honor of Whitney F. Bolton. Ed. Robert Boenig and Kathleen Davis. Bucknell UP, 2000. 171-92.