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Dr. Martha Selby, Chair 120 INNER CAMPUS DR STOP G9300 WCH 4.134 78712-1251 • 512-471-5811

Spring 2008

ANS 384 • Folklore and Oral Performance of South Asia

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
31275 W
3:00 PM-6:00 PM
CBA 4.340
Hansen, K.

Course Description

In the last several decades, folklore and performance theory have become the sites of important interdisciplinary debates in South Asian studies. Key terms such as the folk, genre, text, performance, and tradition have become problematized, influencing larger understandings of expressive culture beyond the region. This graduate seminar will be concerned with 1) theoretical readings that present approaches to the analysis of folklore in general; 2) recent case studies based on fieldwork in South Asia. Topics include the critique of ethnography, theories of narrative, genre theory, oral epics, women's songs, professional entertainment, transvestism, and ritual posession.

Grading Policy

Two research papers, one primarily devoted to a theoretical issue, the other to a case study. Each paper will count for 35% of the final grade. Oral presentations based on the written papers: 10% Leading discussion of seminar readings: 10% Attendance and class participation: 10%


The following books will be read in their entirety. Additional readings will be placed on Electronics Reserve. Rustom Bharucha, Rajasthan: An Oral History Ann Grodzins Gold and Bhoju Ram Gujar, In the Time of Trees and Sorrows Brenda e. F. Beck, et al, eds, Folktales of India Peter J. Claus and Frank J. Korom, Folkloristics and Indian Folklore Stuart Blackburn, et al., Oral Epics in India Philip Lutgendorf, The Life of a Text Kathryn Hansen, Grounds for Play


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