Western Folklore

Quarterly journal specializing in analysis of regional, national, and international folklore. Also focuses on development and critique of folklore theory.

Articles from Vol. 69, No. 3/4, Summer/Fall

Accounting for Jokes: Jocular Performance in a Critical Age
To joke is to embrace the illusion - and the reality - of community. Humor cements the social order as a performance that reveals cohesion through its validation by explosive, uncontrolled laughter. And, yet, jokes with their denigrated targets, their...
Arts, Inc.: How Greed and Neglect Have Destroyed Our Cultural Rights
Arts, Inc.: How Greed and Neglect Have Destroyed Our Cultural Rights. By Bill fvey. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2008. Pp. xx + 342, preface, acknowledgments, introduction, photographs, notes, bibliography, index. $24.95 cloth, $17.95 paper.)Bill...
Competitive Irish Dance: Art, Sport, Duty
Competitive Irish Dance: Art, Sport, Duty. By Frank Hall. (Madison: Macater Press, 2008. Pp. xvi + 150, illustrations, preface, acknowledgments, introduction, online appendix, notes, works cited, index. $29.95 paper.)For much of the twentieth century,...
Film, Folklore and Urban Legends
Film, Folklore and Urban Legends. By Mikel J. Koven. (The Scarecrow Press, Inc. 2007. Pp. iii + 201, contents, acknowledgments, introduction, afterword, filmography, notes, bibliography, index, about the author. $44.00 paper.)Mikel J. Koven's Film, Folklore...
Framing Folklore: An Introduction
This volume contains essays inspired by Jay Mechling's use of the concept of the "play frame" to explain the processes in daily and ceremonial life by which folklore becomes evident and conveys meaning. Frames in his analytical rhetoric are not material...
Indigenous Storywork: Educating the Heart, Mind, Body, and Spirit
Indigenous Storywork: Educating the Heart, Mind, Body, and Spirit. By Jo-ann Archibald/ Q'um Q'um Xiiem. (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2008. Pp. xiv + 176, preface, acknowledgments, bibliography, index. $99.00 cloth, $29.95 paper.)In...
Jay Mechling, Margaret Mead, Masculinities, and Me
Although I was never a student of Jay Mechling, he mentored me in many ways, first as a reviewer of my book, and then as an author whose work contributes to every course I teach. In particular, his book, On My Honor (2001), has added a new dimension...
Made-from-Bone: Trickster Myths, Music, and History from the Amazon
Made-from-Bone: Trickster Myths, Music, and History from the Amazon. By Jonathan D. Hill. (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2009. Pp. xxii + 195, maps, photos, appendices, notes, glossary, index. $65.00 cloth, $22.00 paper.)The hero of this story...
Meng Jiangnü Brings Down the Great Wall: Ten Versions of a Chinese Legend
Meng Jiangnü Brings Down the Great Wall: Ten Versions of a Chinese Legend. Translation and Introduction by Wilt L. Idema with an essay by Haiyan Lee. (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2008. Pp. 312. Glossary, bibliography. $60.00 cloth, $25.00...
Mexican National Identity: Memory, Innuendo, and Popular Culture
Mexican National Identity: Memory, Innuendo, and Popular Culture. By William H. Beezley. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2008. Pp. xiv + 206, preface, acknowledgments, photographs, illustrations, notes, bibliography, index. $55.00 cloth, $24.95...
Pandemonium and Parade: Japanese Monsters and the Cultures of Yokai
Pandemonium and Parade: Japanese Monsters and the Cultures of Yokai. By Michael Dylan Foster. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2009. Pp. xvii + 291, list of illustrations, acknowledgments, note on Japanese names and terms, notes, bibliography,...
Prophet Singer: The Voice and Vision of Woody Guthrie
Prophet Singer: The Voice and Vision of Woody Guthrie. By Mark Allan Jackson. (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2007. Pp. ? + 310, acknowledgments, introduction, photographs, illustrations, notes, index. $50.00 cloth, $25.00 paper.)Mark Allen...
Sacred Spaces and Religious Traditions in Oriente Cuba
Sacred Spaces and Religious Traditions in Oriente Cuba. By Jualynne E. Dodson. (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2008. Pp. xiii + 210, illustrations and maps, foreword, preface, acknowledgments, introduction, photographs, notes, glossary,...
Scottish Life and Society: Oral Literature and Performance Culture
Scottish Life and Society: Oral Literature and Performance Culture. A Compendium of Scottish Ethnology, vol. 10. Edited by John Beech, Owen Hand, Mark A. MulheiTi, and Jeremy Weston. (Edinburgh: Birlinn Ltd., in association with the European Ethnological...
The Ape That Captured Time: Folklore, Narrative, and the Human-Animal Divide
This paper is a result of an attempt to answer a simple question, and that is: do animals tell stories? Although at one point the idea might have seemed ludicrous, at least from the standpoint of Western science, recent advances in animal studies have...
The Athlete, the Doctor, and the Patient: Framing the Game against the Odds
The action of an unknown physician who saved the life of an unknown cancer patient bears more than a little resemblance to the famous action of a celebrated athlete who hit the winning home run during a World Series game. The home run was inspired performance;...
The Devil Notebooks
The Devil Notebooks. By Laurence A. Rickels. (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2008. Pp. xiii + 380, introduction, references, filmography. $75.00 cloth, $24.95 paper.)This formless-seeming book, divided into twenty-six "notebooks" that often...
The Folklore Muse: Poetry, Fiction, and Other Reflections by Folklorists
The Folklore Muse: Poetry, Fiction, and Other Reflections by Folklorists. Edited by Frank de Caro. (Logan: Utah State University Press, 2008. Pp. vii + 244, cover illustration, acknowledgments, introduction, sectional editorial commentary, notes, list...
The J. Golden Kimball Stories
The J. Golden Kimball Stories. By Eric A. Eliason. (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2007. Pp. xx + 188, preface, acknowledgments, introduction, notes, bibliography, index. $50.00 cloth, $20.00 paper.)According to the Utah History Encyclopedia,...
The Life and Times of Ray Hicks: Keeper of the Jack Tales
The Life and Times of Ray Hicks: Keeper of the Jack Tales. By Lynn Salsi. (Knoxville: The University of Tennessee Press, 2008. Pp. xxiii +206. Black and white photos, index, genealogy, note on dialect. $34.95 cloth.)This book, The Life and Times of Ray...
The Political Lives of Avatars: Play and Democracy in Virtual Worlds
More than any other folklorist, Jay Mechling has helped us to see the serious nature of play and its implications for broader social and political negotiation. Through his many nuanced and careful readings of children's folklore practices, he has added...
There Was a Woman: La Llorona from Folklore to Popular Culture
There Was a Woman: La Llorona from Folklore to Popular Culture. By Domino Renee Perez (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2008. Pp. xix+272, author's preface, art work, photographs, illustrations, notes, bibliography, index. $60.00 cloth, $24.95 paper.)For...
Traveling Home: Sacred Harp Singing and American Pluralism
Traveling Home: Sacred Harp Singing and American Pluralism. By Kiri Miller. (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2008. Music in American Life Series. Pp. xx + 252, source recordings, acknowledgments, introduction, musical notation, photographs,...
Troubling Violence: A Performance Project
Troubling Violence: A Performance Project. By M. Heather Carver and Elaine J. Lawless. (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2009. Pp.158, acknowledgments, introduction, bibliography. $50.00 cloth, $25.00 paper.)In 2003 M. Heather Carver, a professor...
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