Folklore | Arabian Nights: East & West
F617 | 11861 | H. El-Shamy
Fulfills Area or Form
Above class meets with Folk-F307.
In 1704 the French Orientalist Antoine Galland introduced The
Thousand and One Nights to the Western World. Few written or printed
documents received more public attention worldwide than did this
compendium of re-written folk narratives and its Western derivative
known as The Arabian Nights. The impact of the Nights on cultures
across the world has been profound. This course explores a variety
of issues related to the work from interdisciplinary perspectives.
I. Eastern Thousand Nights and a Night and Western
Arabian Nights: The Written and the Oral; the Oral Connections
II. The Format: The Frame Story
III. Sheherzad: the Raconteuress as role model. What does Sheherzad
represent for the contemporary female?
IV. The Literary Genres in the Two Nights Traditions The Novella,
the "fairy tale"/Zaubermšrchen, the Legend, the Exemplum, the Cante
fable/sÓrah, the legend, the Humorous Anecdote, the Formula tale.
The Nights in Modern Arts (Cinema, Music, Painting)
V. Society and Social Relations in the Nights Freemen and Slaves
Race, Species, Ethnicity and Faith Male and Female Marriage and
Concubinage Husbands and wives, Men and Save-girls, Parents and
VI. Other Sociocultural Institutions Economy, Government, Religion
VII. Social Theories and Worldviews in the Nights
VIII. Theoretical framework for the Study of the Nights (Analyses of
Specific Tale Texts); Historical Reconstructional,
Functional/Sociocultural, Psychoanalytic, Feminist, Semiotic, ....
Two Exams "Take home" and "objective";
One Term Paper.
Attendance and participation are of paramount importance.