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The origins of the concept in Enlightenment intellectual culture
Nicholas Hudson

6 Chapter 8 The spoken word Constructing oral tradition Constructing oral tradition: the origins of the concept in Enlightenment intellectual culture Nicholas Hudson [M]any circumstances of those times we call barbarous are favourable to the poetical spirit. That state, in which human nature shoots wild and free, though unfit for other improvements, certainly encourages the high exertions of fancy and passion . . . An American chief, at this day, harangues at the head of his tribe, in a more bold and metaphorical style, than a modern European would adventure

in The spoken word
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Old English remedies and medical texts

Hybrid creatures emerging from the pages of Old English medical texts readily capture the modern imagination. A powerful medicinal root in an Old English herbal is rendered with distinctly human arms and legs; a swarm charm inscribed in the margins of Bede’s Old English history addresses bees as Valkyrie-like beings; an entry in the compilation known as the Lacnunga identifies a wayside plant as both herb and mother. Yet the most powerful forms of hybridity in the Old English healing tradition are more subtle and pervasive: linguistic hybrids of Latin and vernacular, cultural hybrids fusing Christian liturgy and Germanic lore, and generic hybrids drawing simultaneously from an ambient oral tradition and an increasingly ubiquitous culture of writing. Hybrid healing seeks to meet such textual hybridity with a methodological hybridity of its own. Drawing from a range of fields including historical linguistics, classical rhetoric, archaeology, plant biology, folkloristics, and disability studies, a series of close readings examines selected Old English medical texts through individually tailored combinations of approaches designed to illustrate how the healing power of these remedies ultimately derives from unique convergences of widely disparate traditions and influences. This case-study model positions readers to appreciate more fully the various forces at work in any given remedy, replacing reductive assumptions that have often led early medieval medicine to be dismissed as mere superstition. By inviting readers to approach each text with appropriately diverse critical frameworks, the book opens a space to engage the medieval healing tradition with empathy, understanding, and imagination.

Open Access (free)
Cautionary tales and oral tradition in early modern England
Alexandra Walsham

6 Chapter 6 The spoken word Reformed folklore? Reformed folklore? Cautionary tales and oral tradition in early modern England Alexandra Walsham P rotestantism and print have often been presented as inherently hostile to oral tradition. Historians have credited both with a leading role in marginalizing, fossilizing, and ultimately suffocating the vernacular culture of late medieval England. Still widely regarded as a movement whose success depended upon the spread of literacy and the advent of the press, the Reformation is commonly associated with attempts to

in The spoken word
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Anna Green
Kathleen Troup

memory and remembering, and look at key developments in the analysis and interpretation of oral histories and oral traditions. What is memory? Memory has been represented in Western thought through a wide range of metaphors, as the Dutch psychologist and historian Douwe Draaisma noted: ‘Memory was once a wax tablet, codex or magic slate, then again an abbey or theatre, sometimes a forest, or on other occasions a treasure chest, aviary or warehouse’. More recently new technologies have provided the metaphors, from photography and film to the computer. 1 Understanding

in The houses of history
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‘Youth’ and the oral tradition
Paul Wake

1 Marlow: ‘Youth’ and the oral tradition For a long time already he, sitting apart, had been no more to us than a voice. (Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness) Marlow: character or narrator? The description of Marlow given in the Oxford Reader’s Companion to Conrad, distilling, as it does, decades of critical discussion, provides a useful place from which to begin a study of his role, its authors tell us: He has often been seen as Conrad’s autobiographical alter ego, since his narratives are based on Conrad’s own experiences in the ill-fated Palestine (‘Youth’) or

in Conrad’s Marlow
Customary society and oral culture in rural England, 1700–1900
Bob Bushaway

eighteenth century. Rural popular culture was most often despised and derided by contemporaries whose judgements have been shared by some later commentators alike as merely a degraded reflection of urban civilization or as an irredeemably backward product of social and economic structures rooted in ignorance and folly and most usually thought of as surviving from earlier times. Historians have, in general, noted the decline of oral tradition in the English countryside as an early stage on the road to spreading popular literacy. One writes: ‘If the oral tradition largely

in The spoken word
Cara Delay

. Although clerical power over adolescent girls in real life was almost absolute, the tables were turned within the fiction of the narrative. For Ireland’s people, oral traditions, ballads, songs, fairy belief, and folklore had long provided an alternative discourse of sorts, functioning to counteract the power of the British state and serving as a form of expressing colonial resistance.36 Developing tensions between lay women and priests are reflected in these narratives as well. This was an age in which priests attempted to regulate female behaviour and sexuality

in Irish women and the creation of modern Catholicism, 1850–1950
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Towards a theory of talecraft
Willem de Blécourt

from all the other instances presented in this book, the influence of written on oral tradition is also good to follow with a single story such as Jorinde and Joringel (KHM 69) which the Grimms had appropriated from the eighteenth-century writer Heinrich Jung-Stilling. A malicious witch has turned the girl Jorinde into a nightingale and her boyfriend Joringel is capable of saving her only after dreaming about a

in Tales of magic, tales in print
Contested terrains
Mícheál Ó hAodha

said to form elements within this ‘Third Space’ and which have assimilated Irish oral tradition including a range of folktales which encompass both hegemonic and counter-hegemonic impulses and which constitute a discourse of ‘othering’ regarding the Travelling community. In the following chapters I explore the central attributes of this discourse which incorporates both affirmative and negative ‘constructions’ of Travellers from within the Irish tradition. The liminal margins of the text present exciting new opportunities for textual analysis; in particular, they

in ‘Insubordinate Irish’
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Colette Balmain

“Western” model) and the global. The possible implication for contemporary Asian cinema is that it is effaced, subsumed, or marginalised in such a structure’ ( 2006 : 24). The return to the premodern and oral traditions, a key component of pan-Asian Gothic, can be read as a resistance to the global at the level of the local. However, the global is already imbricated within the

in Globalgothic