Blue Ridge Folklife

Blue Ridge Folklife

Blue Ridge Folklife

Blue Ridge Folklife

Excerpt

Folklife, a familiar concept in European scholarship for over a century, is the sum of a community's traditional forms of expression and behavior. It has claimed the attention of American folklorists since the 1950s. Each volume in the Folklife in the South Series focuses on the shared traditions that link people with their past and provide meaning and continuity for them in the present, and sets these traditions in the social contexts in which they flourish. Prepared by recognized scholars in various academic disciplines, these volumes are designed to be read separately. Each contains a vivid description of one region's traditional cultural elements -- ethnic and mainstream, rural and urban -- that, in concert with those of other recognizable southern regions, lend a unique interpretation to the complex social structure of the South.

The Blue Ridge region, which stretches along the Appalachian chain through portions of present day Georgia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia, was virtually forsaken during the nineteenth century's period of western expansion, by which time hardy colonists from the region had followed Daniel Boone, its most famous settler, into the frontier. Ted Olson provides keen insight into the folkways that developed in the wake of that migration. Olson's account discusses consequential political, social, economic, and environmental issues and identifies the Anglo-American, Celtic-American, German-American, AfricanAmerican, and Cherokee influences on the culture of the region. His work provides a holistic approach to a region that has been documented in numerous books and articles but whose traditions have never been treated so comprehensively.

William Lynwood Montell SERIES EDITOR

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