Folklore | The International Folk Narrative
F545 | 5484 | El-Shamy


This seminar proceeds from the premise that a tale is "a
description of life and living - -real or fictitious." It is a survey
of the
field of the study of narratives that have acquired cross-cultural
continuities (have become "Tale-types"). The significance of such
continuities will be explored.
The contents may be designated as follows:  I. Introduction: The
international folk narrative as a sociocultural phenomenon; II. Key
concepts
and analytical tools associated with the study of the international
tale and
with typology; III. Collecting, Classifying and Studying: Early
attempts to
develop classificatory systems: the shared textual qualities; IV.
Factors
Involved Studying Folk Narrative Genres: Form; contents; functions or
narrators' intent; performance; context; the social process; kinship
ties;
culture-bound symbols and perceptions; historical evidence as a
criterion in
classification; the world view of the scholar/classifier; perception
within
cognitive systems; V. The Indexes. The Aarne-Thompson Euro-centric
Classification and its relevance to other regions of the World (e.g.,
Middle
Eastern and Sub-Saharan Data. Aa-Th unclassifiable materials (personal
narratives, belief narratives, historical legends, social reports,
communal
event, etc). Morphological patterns as basis for classification; VI.
Other
Systems of Classification: Theme; topic; culture institution: the
Human
Relations Area Files: G.P. Murdock's Outline of Culture Materials;
VII. The
Genres of the International Folk Tale, and Links to Other Categories
of
Lore. The proverb, the riddles, beliefs-rituals, customs, narrative
folk
poetry (ballad, epic, epic-like sÓÓrah, cante-fable); VIII. Theories,
Approaches (Methods), and the Interpretation of Data (Narrative
Materials):
"Historical Reconstructional; the "Historic-Geographic Method"/"The
Finnish
School"/Historical Geographical. The Anthropological-Evolutionary
theory;
the Functional theory. "The Psychoanalytical and Neo -
psychoanalytical";
Performance and Contextual Approaches. Genre and `performance'.
Lecture, discussions, and practical workshop.