ENG 283E: Our Premodern Epics: How Epics Create Culture and Vice Versa

Don Quixote

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra wrote his 1605/1615 novel as a reaction to a life of imprisonment, hard work, and that whole five year period when he was enslaved by pirates. Though Don Quixote parodies the idea of chivalry and chivalric romance, readers still find Don Quixote and his stubborn clinging to his dream of a life as a knight-errant as a source of inspiration and hope. Satire or poetic dream? Not even today's incarnation of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza can agree.

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