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Contexts of Folklore

Festschrift for Dan Ben-Amos on His Eighty-Fifth Birthday


Edited By Simon J. Bronner and Wolfgang Mieder

Dan Ben-Amos famously ushered in the performance turn in folklore studies in the 1970s with his paradigm-changing definition of folklore as "artistic communication in small groups." He went on to make profound contributions to issues of folktale, folk speech, genre, cultural memory, biblical and Jewish folklore, African folklore, and historiography, and gain renown around the world as a leading figure in folklore studies. In Contexts of Folklore, leading lights of folklore studies from many corners of the globe honor Ben-Amos by presenting original studies inspired by his insights. Their essays will assuredly be lasting, provocative statements of folklore research that will energize future generations of folklorists and other scholars of culture and communication.

Preface and Acknowledgments – Simon J. Bronner / Wolfgang Mieder: Introduction: The Contexts of Dan Ben-Amos – Clover Jebsen Afokpa: Nondichao Bachalou, Museum Guide and Historian of Abomey, Benin – Haya Bar-Itzhak: The Truth of Fervent Desire: Stories About the Deaths of Jewish Cultural Heroes During the Holocaust – Richard Bauman: Signing at Cross-Purposes – Michael J. Bell: Stephen Dedalus Sings "Little Harry Hughes": Anti-Semitism as Folkloric Performance in James Joyce’s Ulysses – Regina F. Bendix/Galit Hasan-Rokem: Israeli Political Humor: What Was There To Laugh About in 1967? – Charles L. Briggs: The Bodies of the Narrator – Gary Alan Fine/Stephanie Bliese/Christopher Robertson: The Jesus Movement as Folk Group – Ruth Finnegan: Performancing: The Enactor’s Reality – Pekka Hakamies: The Concept of Equal Validity in Narratives of Soviet Experience in the Former Finnish Karelia – William Hansen: Trapping the Intruder: A Narrative Pattern in Homer’s Odyssey – Lee Haring: A Creole Narrative Grammar – Frank J. Korom: Religious Nationalisms Compared: The Curious Cases of India and Serbia – Isaac Jack Lévy/Rosemary Lévy Zumwalt: Djuha at Home on the Isle of Rhodes, Italy, and in Georgia, United States – MD Abdullah al Mamum/Simon J. Bronner: A Quantitative Cross-Cultural Analysis of Folk Crafts in Relation to Foreign Aid in Developing Countries – Ulrich Marzolph: "Ceci n’est point une fable": Tale Type ATU 63, The Fox Rids Himself of Fleas, from Popular Tradition to Natural History (and Back Again) – Jay Mechling: Folklore and the Emotional Brain – Wolfgang Mieder: "Proverbs Are Worth a Thousand Words": The Global Spread of American Proverbs – Margaret A. Mills: Magic and Libel: Contexts for Muslim Memories of the Jewish Community of Herat, Afghanistan – Amos Noy: "Do You Want to Hear a Secret?": Secret-Telling as an Oral Genre – Dorothy Noyes: In Praise of Formalism: Teaching Samson’s Riddles in a Diverse Classroom – Joseph Russo: Giuseppe Pitrè’s Sicilian Folktales: Text and Performance, Prose and Poetry – Jack Santino: The Vernacular Sacred – Amy Shuman: Tradition and Embodied Knowledge in an Artisan Community – Ülo Valk: Folk Narrative Genres, Liminality and Epistemological Uncertainty – Stephen D. Winick: From Wheccumquek to Quink- Quankeo: "The Fals Fox," "The Fox and the Goose," and the Folk Ballad – Eli Yassif: From Ginzberg’s Legends of the Bible to Ben-Amos’s Folktales of the Jews: Towards a History of Jewish Folk Narratives and Its Study – Yael Zerubavel: The Shepherd, the Well, and the Jug: National Memory and Symbolic Bridges to Antiquity in Modern Hebrew Culture – Juwen Zhang: Motif as Symbol in Context – Jack Zipes: Waking Henry Iliowizi, Or, How Jews and Gentiles Have Something to Learn from the Dead.