This is the first definitive reference work to address the substantive elements of oral storytelling, a form of communication that dates back to the dawn of humanity. It is an A to Z collection of over 700 entries covering such major storytelling elements as motifs, character types, tale types, place names, and creation mythologies and storytelling techniques of cultures around the world. Examples of subjects covered are the contributions of pioneering folklorists and mythologists such as: Franz Boas, Stith Thompson, and Joseph Campbell; descriptions of such well-known Western tales as Cinderella, the Greek myth of Persephone and Demeter, and the story of Exodus; as well as tales from Native American, African, and Asian cultures, including Indra and the Ants, tales of Anansi, the spider-trickster of the Ashanti, and the Cherokee Bear-man.
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About the Author
DAVID ADAMS LEEMING is professor emeritus of English and comparative literature at the University of Connecticut, Storrs, where he has taught since 1969. He held the position of Lycee English Head at Robert College, Istanbul, from 1961 to 1963 and again from 1966 to 1969. Leeming is the author of Mythology: The Voyage of the Hero and The World of Myth. He is also the coauthor of several works, including God: Myths of the Male Divine, Dictionary of Creation Myths, Encyclopedia of Creation Myths, and Goddess: Myths of the Female Divine and the forthcoming Mythology of Native North America. He holds a bachelor of arts degree in English from Princeton University and a master's degree and a Ph.D. from New York University.
Table of Contents
Once Upon a Time David Adams Leeming 3
Building Bridges with Stories Melissa Heckler and Carol Birch 8
American Oral Tradition Emory Elliott and Jackie Stallcup 16
The Utopian Tendency of Storytelling: Turning the World Upside Down Jack Zipes 27
A-Z Entries 35
Selected Bibliography 509