This article considers how we can discuss emotions (a human phenomenon) within literature (a discursive construction). The article poses the question of where we can locate this perceived literary emotionality in medieval works and considers the role of the reader in constructing the emotive interiority of the feeling subject in medieval literature. The focus of the essay is thus on the modern reader's engagement with the medieval textual object d'art and the unique representation of medieval literary creativity as both a physical artefact (the manuscript) and an act of vocal performance in the past. It therefore addresses material textuality as well as the implications of aural performativity for generating and sustaining empathetic connection between text and reader, or between the text and an audience of listeners.

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