Selfhood and Cultural Tradition in Nineteenth and Twentieth-century American Literature
Author: Karen E. Beardslee
Publisher: Univ. of Tennessee Press
Category: Literary Criticism
In this provocative study of eight novels, Karen E. Beardslee asserts that American writers often engage with folk traditions as a necessary part of their characters' journeys to wholeness. Focusing not only on African American, Native American, and Hispanic American cultures but also on women's culture, Beardslee traces the connections between folk legacies and the search for selfhood in both nineteenth- and twentieth-century works. Within each chapter, a novel by a contemporary author and one from an earlier period are brought together: Whitney Otto's How to Make an American Quilt and Harriet Beecher Stowe's The Minister's Wooing; David Bradley's The Chaneysville Incident and Charles Chesnutt's The Conjure Woman; Leslie Marmon Silko's Ceremony and Zitkala-Sa's American Indian Stories; and Roberta Fernandez's Intaglio and Maria Cristina Mena's The Birth of the God of War. These pairings are not based on matters of intertextuality or influence but are chosen according to the folk groups to which the novels' characters belong. This strategy enables Beardslee to trace the particular legacies that inform the work of the twentieth-century authors. As Beardslee notes, contemporary texts and the critical commentary on them have focused, until fairly recently, on the "search for self" in male (usually white) characters. Such works have also positioned that search outside the character's family or community and have usually emphasized its futility. With the growing shift toward multiculturalism in fiction, however, folk traditions have come to play an increasingly crucial role in characters' journeys to self-awareness as well as in the success of those journeys. Thoroughly researched and cogently argued, this book makes a significant contribution to the study of both folklore and literature as it explores the relationship between knowing one's cultural heritage and achieving a sense of self that is whole instead of fragmented, connected instead of drifting. The Author: Karen E. Beardslee teaches in the Department of Language and Literature at Burlington County College in Pemberton, New Jersey. Her articles have appeared in MELUS, The Encyclopedia of Folklore and Literature, and the Zora Neale Hurston Forum.
Opening with a critical appreciation of Alan Dundes (M. Carroll) and Dundes's own cross-cultural study of the cockfight, Volume 18 includes chapters on psychoanalysis and Hindu sexual fantasies (W. Doniger); the modern folk tale "The Boyfriend's Death" (M. Carroll); a gruesome Eskimo bedtime story (R. Boyer); the homosexual implications of Argentinean soccer (M. Suarez-Orozco); and the symbolism of a Malaysian religious festival (E. Fuller).
A collection of essays analyzing the leading theories of myth. It surveys the contours of this ongoing discussion, comparing and evaluating the theories of Edward Tylor, William Robertson Smith, James Frazer, Jane Harrison, Sigmund Freud, C.G. Jung, and others.
Encyclopedic in its coverage, this one-of-a-kind reference is ideal for students, scholars, and others who need reliable, up-to-date information on folk and fairy tales, past and present. • Provides encyclopedic coverage of folktales and fairy tales from around the globe • Covers not only the history of the fairy tale, but also topics of contemporary importance such as the fairy tale in manga, television, pop music, and music videos • Brings together the study of geography, culture, history, and anthropology • Revises and expands an award-winning work to now include a full volume of selected tales and texts
A Companion to Folklore presents an original and comprehensive collection of essays from international experts in the field of folklore studies. Unprecedented in depth and scope, this state-of-the-art collection uniquely displays the vitality of folklore research across the globe. An unprecedented collection of original, state of the art essays on folklore authored by international experts Examines the practices and theoretical approaches developed to understand the phenomena of folklore Considers folklore in the context of multi-disciplinary topics that include poetics, performance, religious practice, myth, ritual and symbol, oral textuality, history, law, politics and power as well as the social base of folklore Selected by Choice as a 2013 Outstanding Academic Title
The Celtic Fringe, the British Empire, and De-Anglicization
Author: Laura O'Connor
Publisher: JHU Press
Category: Literary Criticism
Haunted English explores the role of language in colonization and decolonization by examining how Anglo-Celtic modernists W. B. Yeats, Hugh MacDiarmid, and Marianne Moore "de-Anglicize" their literary vernaculars. Laura O'Connor demonstrates how the poets’ struggles with and through the colonial tongue are discernible in their signature styles, using aspects of those styles to theorize the dynamics of linguistic imperialism—as both a distinct process and an integral part of cultural imperialism. O'Connor argues that the advance of the English Pale and the accompanying translation of the receding Gaelic culture into a romanticized Celtic Fringe represents multilingual British culture as if it were exclusively English-speaking and yet registers, on a subliminal level, some of the cultural losses entailed by English-only Anglicization. Taking the fin-de-siècle movements of the Gaelic revival and the Irish Literary Renaissance as her point of departure, O'Connor examines the effort to undo cultural cringe through language and literary activism.
Industrial advancement has not changed the basic fragility of human life, and the commercialization and consumer orientation of the mass media has actually helped legends travel faster and farther. Legends are communicated not only orally, face to face, but also in the press, on radio and television, on countless Web sites, and by e-mail, perpetuating new waves of the "culture of fear.""--BOOK JACKET.
Can the study of folklore survive brutal wars and nationalized misappropriations? Does folklore make sense in an age of fearsome technology? These are two of several questions this book addresses with specific and profound reference to the history of folklore studies in Germany. There in the early nineteenth century in the ideological context of romantic nationalism, the works of the Brothers Grimm pioneered the discipline. The sublimation of folklore studies with the nation’s political history reached a peak in the 1930s under the Nazi regime. This book takes a full look at what happened to folklore after the end of World War II and the defeat of the Nazis. A special focus on Lutz Röhrich (1923–2006), whose work spans the decades from 1955 to 2006, makes this book a unique window into a monumental reclamation. In 1945 Röhrich returned from the warfront at the age of twenty-three, a wounded amputee. Resuming his education, he published his seminal Märchen und Wirklichkeit (Folktale and Reality) in 1956. Naithani argues that through this and a huge body of scholarship on folktale, folksong, proverbs, and riddles over the next decades, Röhrich transformed folklore scholarship by critically challenging the legacies of Romanticism and Nazism in German folklore work. Sadhana Naithani’s book is the first full-length treatment of this extraordinary German scholar written in English.