Group. Art. Text. Genre. Performance. Context. Tradition. Identity.
No matter where we are--in academic institutions, in cultural agencies, at home, or in a casual conversation--these are words we use when we talk about creative expression in its cultural contexts. Eight Words for the Study of Expressive Culture is a thoughtful, interdisciplinary examination of the keywords that are integral to the formulation of ideas about the diversity of human creativity, presented as a set of essays by leading folklorists.
Many of us use these eight words every day. We think with them. We teach with them. Much of contemporary scholarship rests on their meanings and implications. They form a significant part of a set of conversations extending through centuries of thought about creativity, meaning, beauty, local knowledge, values, and community. Their natural habitats range across scholarly disciplines from anthropology and folklore to literary and cultural studies and provide the framework for other fields of practice and performance as well.
Eight Words for the Study of Expressive Culture is a much-needed study of keywords that are frequently used but not easily explained. Anchored by Burt Feintuch’s cogent introduction, the book features essays by Dorothy Noyes, Gerald L. Pocius, Jeff Todd Titon, Trudier Harris, Deborah A. Kapchan, Mary Hufford, Henry Glassie, and Roger D. Abrahams.