The topics of "selfhood" and "otherness" lie at the heart of these new assessments of John Gower's poetry. The first part of the book, on knowing the self and others, focuses on cognition, brain functions, imagination, and the internal and external factors that affect one's sense of being, from sensation and inner emotive effects within body parts to cosmic perspectives, morality, and theology as voiced by language and storytelling. The second, on the essence of strangers, explores the interconnections of sensation and aesthetics; it also considers kinds of social dysfunction, whether through racial or gender conflict, or religious and political warfare. The final part of the book looks at social ethics and ethical poets, reassessing two of Gower's perpetual concerns: honest government and honest craft. It considers Gower as a constitutional thinker, whether in terms of law, judicial corruption, or a society of businessmen who would rewrite ethics in terms of business models. It concludes with an examination of the Confessio in the culture of Portugal and Spain.Russell Peck is the John Hall Deane Professor of English at the University of Rochester: R. F. Yeager is Professor of English at the University of West Florida.Contributors: Stephanie L. Batkie, Helen Cooper, Brian W. Gastle, Matthew Giancarlo, Matthew W. Irvin, Yoshiko Kobayashi, Robert J. Meindl, Peter Nicholson, Maura Nolan, Gabrielle Parkin, Russell A. Peck, Ana Sáez-Hidalgo, Larry Scanlon, Karla Taylor, Kim Zarins, R.F. Yeager.