Oral Tradition Volume 33, Number 1 Richard Hughes Gibson Richard Hughes Gibson is Associate Professor of English at Wheaton College and the author of Forgiveness in Victorian Literature: Grammar, Narrative, and Community (2015). With the designer Jeremy Botts, he directs the Manibus Press, an occasional publisher of artists’ books. Shem Miller Shem Miller is Assistant Teaching Professor of Religion at […]
Volume 33 marks a major transition for Oral Tradition. After thirty-two fruitful years at the University of Missouri, the journal has now found a new home at Harvard University. In the “Editor’s Column” that prefaced the first issue of Oral Tradition in 1986, John Miles Foley justified the creation of the new journal by speaking of the need […]
Oral Tradition, 33/1 (2019):51-88 People who pose questions and practitioners of magic have one thing in common: they claim power and authority over others. They lay their claim using language that positions them as speakers with access to, and control over, the unknown. Analyzing questions in multiple versions of “The Song of Bagdad,” a South Slavic epic, […]
Oral Tradition, 33/1 (2019):23-501 On an auspicious day, two families from Ne’u na Village, a small village along the Yellow River in Western China’s Qinghai Province, gather to celebrate a wedding. The day has been chosen specifically for this purpose. Midway through the wedding banquet, a man stands before the crowd already so drunk that his words are almost unintelligible, and he speaks. He […]
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Oral Tradition, 33/1 (2019):115-142 The Myth of Milman Parry Oral traditions are creative: they romanticize and sensationalize otherwise mundane events. The memory of a historical but probably minor conflict between the Mycenaeans and Trojans over commercial interests—access to the straits of the Hellespont that connected the Black Sea to the Aegean—evolved over time into an […]
Oral Tradition, 33/1 (2019):3-22 The Dead Sea Scrolls are a cache of ancient manuscripts written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek discovered in eleven caves from 1947-1956. Most scholars associate the Dead Sea Scrolls with an ancient Jewish community who lived in a complex of ruins on the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea known as […]
Oral Tradition, 33/1 (2019):89-114 The most important question raised by studies in oral tradition is “So what?” —John Miles Foley, “Oral Tradition and Its Implications” With the publication of his fine press Odyssey in view, the great American printer and typographer Bruce Rogers wrote in April 1931 to his translator, T. E. Lawrence, with a […]