Cătălin ȚĂRANU

Academic Year:

Research Program:
NEC Odobleja

Independent scholar


Research project: The Dark Side of Honour: Shame in the Emotional Life of Germanic Heroic Poetry

This project aims to provide a more fine-grained understanding of the emotional life of medieval European societies via a novel approach combining social science-based approaches in the history of emotions to digital corpus analysis of expressions of shame in medieval heroic verse. It aims to establish cross-cultural evidence for a medieval socio-emotional vocabulary of honour as based on shame, its often secret antipode, by investigating a selection of Old English and Old Norse heroic poems and sagas. Via affect theory and the social psychology of shame and gender, this project will trace the culturally-bound differences and diachronic trends in the linguistic, socio-emotional, and performative vocabularies of honour across a selection of medieval heroic literature, while outlining the socio-emotional economy of heroism and honour built around the ever-present spectre of shame underlying these changes and differences.