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Oral poetry : its nature, significance, and social context

Author: Ruth H Finnegan
Publisher: Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1992.
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : 1st Midland book edView all editions and formats
Summary:

Provides an introduction to 'oral poetry,' ranging from American folksongs, Eskimo lyrics, and modern popular songs to medieval oral literature, the heroic poems of Homer, and the epic compositions  Read more...

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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Finnegan, Ruth H.
Oral poetry.
Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1992
(OCoLC)760919185
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Ruth H Finnegan
ISBN: 0253322006 9780253322005 0253207088 9780253207081
OCLC Number: 24141733
Description: xxiv, 299 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Contents: 1. Introductory. 1. The importance of oral poetry. 2. Some forms of oral poetry. 3. What is 'oral' in oral poetry? 4. The 'poetry' in oral poetry. 5. Performance and text --
2. Some approaches to the study of oral poetry. 1. Romantic and evolutionist theories. 2. The 'historical-geographical' school. 3. Sociological approaches and the sociology of literature. 4. Two 'ideal types' of society and poetry --
3. Composition. 1. Is memorisation the key factor? 2. Composition-in-performance and the oral-formulaic theory. 3. How valid is the oral-formulaic theory? 4. Prior composition, memorisation and performance. 5. Conclusion --
4. Style and performance. 1. The relevance of style and performance. 2. Prosodic systems. 3. Repetition, style and structure. 4. Language and diction. 5. Performance. 6. Is there a special oral style? 7. Conclusion --
5. Transmission, distribution and publication. 1. Oral transmission over space and time: some striking cases. 2. Inert tradition, memorisation or re-creation? 3. How do oral poems reach their audiences? 4. 'Oral transmission' and writing. 5. Conclusion --
6. Poets and their positions. 1. The poet: five case studies. 2. Some types of poets: specialists, experts and occasional poets. 3. Are oral poets anonymous? 4. The poet as seer. 5. The poet as individual genius --
7. Audience, context and function. 1. Some types of audience. 2. The effect and the composition of audiences. 3. The purpose and meaning of poetry: local theories. 4. Some effects of oral poetry --
8. Poetry and society. 1. The link between poetic and social institutions. 2. Does one type of poetry always go with a particular form of society? 'Heroic age', 'ballad society' and 'oral culture'. 3. Literature as the reflection and consequence of social forms. 4. Literature as social action.
Responsibility: Ruth Finnegan.

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"No student should embark on a study of poetry in any culture without first reading this book."Research in African Literatures

 
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