Memory in Oral Traditions: The Cognitive Psychology of Epic, Ballads, and Counting-out Rhymes

Memory in Oral Traditions: The Cognitive Psychology of Epic, Ballads, and Counting-out Rhymes

by David C. Rubin
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195082117

ISBN-13: 9780195082111

Pub. Date: 03/30/1995

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

Long studied by anthropologists, historians, and linguists, oral traditions have provided a wealth of fascinating insights into unique cultural customs that span the history of humankind. In this groundbreaking work, cognitive psychologist David C. Rubin offers for the first time an accessible, comprehensive examination of what such traditions can tell us about the

Overview

Long studied by anthropologists, historians, and linguists, oral traditions have provided a wealth of fascinating insights into unique cultural customs that span the history of humankind. In this groundbreaking work, cognitive psychologist David C. Rubin offers for the first time an accessible, comprehensive examination of what such traditions can tell us about the complex inner workings of human memory. Focusing in particular on their three major forms of organization—theme, imagery, and sound pattern—Rubin proposes a model of recall, and uses it to uncover the mechanisms of memory that underlie genres such as counting-out rhymes, ballads, and epics. The book concludes with an engaging discussion of how conversions from oral to written communication modes can predict how cutting-edge computer technologies will affect the conventions of future transmissions. Throughout, Rubin presents the results of important original research as well as new perspectives on classical subjects. Splendidly written and farsighted, Memory in Oral Traditions will be eagerly read by students and researchers in areas as diverse as cognitive psychology, literary studies, classics, and cultural anthropology.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195082111
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
03/30/1995
Pages:
400
Product dimensions:
6.50(w) x 9.50(h) x 1.46(d)
Lexile:
1370L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. The Representation of Themes in Memory
3. Imagery
4. Sound
5. Combining Constraints
6. The Transmission of Oral Traditions
7. Basic Observations on Remembering
8. A Theory of Remembering for Oral Traditions
9. Epic and Formulaic Theory
10. Counting-out Rhymes
11. North Carolina Ballads
12. Discussion

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