Orality and Literacy: Reflections across Disciplines

Edited by Keith Thor Carlson, Kristina Fagan, and Natalia Khanenko-Friesen

© 2011

Orality and Literacy investigates the interactions of the oral and the literate through close studies of particular cultures at specific historical moments. Rejecting the 'great-divide' theory of orality and literacy as separate and opposite to one another, the contributors posit that whatever meanings the two concepts have are products of their ever-changing relationships to one another.

Through topics as diverse as Aboriginal Canadian societies, Ukrainian-Canadian narratives, and communities in ancient Greece, Medieval Europe, and twentieth-century Asia, these cross-disciplinary essays reveal the powerful ways in which cultural assumptions, such as those about truth, disclosure, performance, privacy, and ethics, can affect a society's uses of and approaches to both the written and the oral. The fresh perspectives in Orality and Literacy reinvigorate the subject, illuminating complex interrelationships rather than relying on universal generalizations about how literacy and orality function.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 344 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.9in x 0.9in x 9.0in
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Quick Overview

Orality and Literacy investigates the interactions of the oral and the literate through close studies of particular cultures at specific historical moments.

Orality and Literacy: Reflections across Disciplines

Edited by Keith Thor Carlson, Kristina Fagan, and Natalia Khanenko-Friesen

© 2011

Orality and Literacy investigates the interactions of the oral and the literate through close studies of particular cultures at specific historical moments. Rejecting the 'great-divide' theory of orality and literacy as separate and opposite to one another, the contributors posit that whatever meanings the two concepts have are products of their ever-changing relationships to one another.

Through topics as diverse as Aboriginal Canadian societies, Ukrainian-Canadian narratives, and communities in ancient Greece, Medieval Europe, and twentieth-century Asia, these cross-disciplinary essays reveal the powerful ways in which cultural assumptions, such as those about truth, disclosure, performance, privacy, and ethics, can affect a society's uses of and approaches to both the written and the oral. The fresh perspectives in Orality and Literacy reinvigorate the subject, illuminating complex interrelationships rather than relying on universal generalizations about how literacy and orality function.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 344 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.9in x 0.9in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "Drawing closely on contemporary oral traditions, archival documents, and orally narrated life stories, Orality and Literacy not only emphasizes the contact zones in which oral and written forms co-exist, but also the slippery, dynamic tension that changes their relationship. This thought-provoking book will appeal to students and scholars thinking about similar intersections in their work."


    Julie Cruikshank, Professor Emerita, University of British Columbia
  • Author Information

    Keith Thor Carlson is a professor of History at the University of the Fraser Valley where he holds a Tier One Canada Research Chair in Indigenous and Community-Engaged History.


    Kristina Fagan is a professor in the Department of English at the University of Saskatchewan.


    Natalia Khanenko-Friesen is the director of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta.
  • Table of contents

    Acknowledgments
    Map of Selected Place Names

    Introduction: Reading and Listening at Batoche
    Keith Thor Carlson, Kristina Fagan, and Natalia Khanenko-Friesen

    Part One: Questioning Truths

    1. Boasting, Toasting, and Truthtelling
    J. Edward Chamberlin

    2. Orality about Literacy: The "Black and White" of Salish History Keith Thor Carlson

    Part Two: Writing it Down

    3. The Philosopher's Art: Ring Composition and Classification in Plato's Sophist and Hipparchus
    Twyla Gibson

    4. The Social Lives of Sedna and Sky Woman: The Textualization of Stories from Inuit and Mohawk Oral Traditions
    Susan Gingell

    Part Three: Going Public

    5. "Private Stories" in Aboriginal Literature
    Kristina Fagan

    6. From Family Lore to a People's History: Ukrainian Claims to the Canadian Prairies
    Natalia Khanenko-Friesen

    Part Four: Subverting Authority

    7. Literacy, Orality, Authority, and Hypocrisy
    Gary Arbuckle

    8. Unstable Texts and Modal Approaches to the Written Word in Medieval European Ritual Magic
    Frank Klaassen

    Part Five: Uncovering Voices

    9. A Tagalog Awit of the "Holy War" against the United States, 1899-1902
    Reynaldo Illeto

    10. Telling the Untold: Representations of Ethnic and Regional Identities in Ukrainian Women's Autobiographies
    Oksana Kis

    Contributors
    Index

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