Segment 1: Interview: Prof. Richard Scott Nokes
- Buy the book A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain or the movie on DVD
- Read A Chainsaw Wielding Yankee in King Arthur’s Demonic Court, by Prof. Richard Scott Nokes, in the Autumn 07 edition of the on-line journal Coyote Wild.
Segment 2: Report on the American Sword of Chivalry 2008 Joust
- See pictures and videos of the knights and jousting at the event.
- Go to Knight School with Historic Enterprises
- The Sword of Chivalry Jousting at the Royal Armouries
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2 thoughts on “Episode 22: Zombies, Time Travelers and King Arthur”
I finally listened to this podcast (sorry I’m so far behind). It’s a good episode. Scott Nokes is very knowledgeable, and he stuck to the subject, which is refreshing! And he mentions Buffy, so how cool is that?!?
I agree with Nokes when he says that Chivalry is composed of common ethical themes (my words not his), but as I’m reading the book, I have to believe that Mark Twain is right on in his satiric mocking. The repeated “They are like children” is like saying they are innocent of their beliefs. I believe this. The rich, no matter what time period, are ignorant of their surroundings – that is until their heads are cut off…. In a larger sense Twain is saying “we all believe on some level what we say or believe, but we’re ignorant of what we actually DO.” Jonathan Swift mocks society in much the same way in “Gulliver’s Travels.” The recent “Occupy Wallstreet” movement differentiates the common from the wealthy. It’s fun to watch the one percent try to fit their mold into the 99%’s.
This is largely the reason why, IMO, that Nobility is truly a farce. I just can’t believe that they – Nobility/Wealthy – are concerned about the greater good. They “think” they are concerned, but we see how it ends up. The Nobles have no concept of the world around them – even when piled high with dead bodies. Twain portrays it first in a comical manner then turns to dark irony, but hey it’s the same thing. Look at Gaddafi.
Anyways… this is a great topic and a great reason why Chivalry Today opens a unique and valuable perspective into our regular, mundane lives. Keep up the good work!
Very interesting perspective, Ray. Glad you found the conversation on Ep 22 thought provoking, even if you don’t agree with some of the conclusions.
You’re right – Twain was not a fan of the 19th century chivalric ethic, and certainly not a fan of the antebellum aristocratic class whose romantic ideals about warfare, sparked by neo-Gothic novels like Sir Walter Scott’s, had brought about the suffering of the Civil War and its aftermath. But is his work “A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court” a critique of the wealthy class, or a dark warning that we all can become desensitized and oblivious to our own hypocrisies if we do not constantly monitor our own motives and methods? (The book does end, after all, with “enlightened” Hank starting a war that sounds eerily reminiscent of the horrors of WWI.) I can’t believe that Twain would really have objected to the core tenets of nobility – the character trait, not the social class – responsibility, personal integrity, and ethical leadership.