The final module of Year 7 explores the genre of Romance from its origins to it transformation into Romanticism. Students begin by reading Nevil Coghill’s verse translation of Chaucer’s ‘Knight’s Tale’ as well as experiencing some of Patience Agbabi’s modern ‘grime’ remix of the Canterbury Tales. This is the first of three of Chaucer’s Tales students get to read and some time is taken to establish the context in which Chaucer lived and wrote.

To help students embed the conventions and concepts of Romance, students will read extracts from two Shakespeare plays: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (focussing on Oberon and Titania, but also making explicit links to ‘The Knight’s Tale’ and Romeo and Juliet (focussing on Mercutio’s Queen Mab speech.) From there, students get a glimpse into the world of Spenser’s Faerie Queen.

Students also read a range of poetry: Keats’ ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’, Rosetti’s ‘Goblin Market’ and Tennyson’s ‘The Lady of Shallot’ and Yeat’s ‘The Second Coming’. Each are examples of how medieval romance has been repurposed and reimagined by later writers. Then, finally, students consider how Romance has become the modern fantasy genre by looking at Tolkien and N. K. Jemisin