Slavic Folklore: A Handbook

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Slavic folklore has great cultural significance and international influence. Written for students and general readers, this book offers a brief but thorough introduction to Slavic folklore. Included are explanations of the different types of Slavic folklore, the role of Slavic folklore in literature and popular culture, and the state of criticism and scholarship on this field of interest. The volume provides numerous examples and cites print and electronic sources for further reading.

The people of Eastern Europe have a long and rich cultural history. Central to that history are the folktales, traditions, and customs of the region. Some elements of Slavic folklore, such as vampire legends and Easter eggs, are well known, while others are more obscure. And when the Slavs came to America, they brought much of their folklore to the new world, where it continues to flourish today. This book is a short but thorough introduction to Slavic folklore.

Written expressly for students and general readers, it systematically overviews Slavic folklore. It discusses the many different types of folklore and summarizes scholarship and research on the subject. It provides a wide range of texts and examples from the Slavic folk tradition and explores the role of Slavic folklore in literature and popular culture. The volume cites numerous print and electronic sources and closes with a glossary and selected, general bibliography. Literature students will enjoy learning about Slavic tales and customs, while students in social studies classes will learn more about the culture of Eastern Europe.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A meticulous study of its subject matter rather than a fairu-tale book of stories. Accessible to general readers, Slavic Folklore discusses the definitions and classifications of Slavic mythography, various scholary approaches and context for understanding these enduring works, and a handful of sample texts….A glossary, bibliography, and index round out this welcome addition to folklore and mythology studies shelves, as well as college library reference shelves."


Midwest Book Review

"Natalie Kononenko's recent volume in the Greenwood Folklore Handbooks series is a most welcome addition to the ever-growing body of scholarship on Slavic folklore in English. . . All in all this is a most useful work for the beginning student, especially one who wants to gain a good overview of Russian and Ukranian folklore and folklore scholarship."



"Although Natalie Kononenko touches on other aspects of Slavic folklore the major part of this book is given over to narrative. There are plenty of examples showing the different types of stories and story poems with information relating to the time these were recorded in written form and who recorded and preserved them. Natalie then goes on to explore the history of folklore research in the area, examining the social fashions and political trends that affected such scholarship over the years."



"Kononenko's insightful commentaries are probably the best feature of this first-ever English-language book on Slavic folklore. Chapter 2 is especially valuable for its survey and thought-provoking explanations of folklore genres, rituals, and architecture (examples are included). Other chapters offer stimulating discussions of folklore in the Slavic cultures; the author includes Ukrainian and Polish folklore materials from the US and Canada to demonstrate that Slavic folklore need not be an exotic subject. One chapter, Examples and Texts, provides the student with materials for papers, a thoughtful, time-saving gesture. Kononenko concludes with a useful chapter on Web resources….this is a valuable addition to the literature on Slavic literature and culture. Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty."



"Natalie Kononenko's Slavic Folklore: A Handbook is suitable for use in survey courses as well as for in-depth folklore studies. The volume is especially strong in genres like memorates, fabulates and material culture, often less familiar than folktales to non-specialists. It includes a helpful note on Aarne-Thompson Tale Type numbers, definitions and classifications of folk genres, examples and texts, an overview of major scholarly works and approaches, informative bibliographies at each section's end, and other scholarly apparatus, including a particularly valuable glossary of terms and genres. Numerous photographs and illustrations, many taken by the author, enliven the pages."


Slavic and East European Journal

". . . a very beneficial publication for western readers and scholars, and also for Slavic scholars and students interested in issues of folkloristics. It will be accessible to a wide variety of readers interested in Slavic culture and folklore. . . . Slavic Folklore is a carefully structured handbook that slowly leads readers from a general understanding of Slavs as an ethnic group to a clear description of specific national folk genres and practices within the contemporary Slavic world . . . . Reading this book, one is struck by how nearly perfectly it serves in its main role. It is a textbook, and for students of Slavic folklife and folk culture it is an invaluable source of knowledge. It performs a service to western readers, satisfying their interest in various forms of Slavic folklore, and it may also serve as a first step toward cross-pollination of folklore studies."


Western Folklore

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313336102
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/28/2007
  • Series: Greenwood Folklore Handbooks Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 232
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

NATALIE KONONENKO holds the Kule Chair of Ukranian Ethnography at the University of Alberta. Her numerous publications include Ukranian Minstrels (1998), The Magic Egg and Other Tales from the Ukraine (Libraries Unlimited, 1997), and The Turkish Minstrel Tale Tradition (1990).

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Table of Contents

Preface     vii
Acknowledgments     xi
Note on Transliteration     xiii
Note on Tale Type Numbers     xv
Introduction     1
Definitions and Classifications     15
Examples and Texts     73
Scholarship and Approaches     115
Contexts     145
Glossary     173
Bibliography     189
Web Resources     197
Index     203
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