A Note to New & Frequent Visitors
Oral Storytelling — Griots, Mystic Bards & Textualizing
I am gradually re-orienting this site to focus on:
- Oral storytelling traditions
- Profiles of master storytellers, particularly on the fringes of the Chinese empire, and in Central Asia and West Africa
- How the storytelling roles of the shaman, aşık and griot have evolved over the centuries
- Live performance of epics, hikâye and the like, and how storytellers interact with their audience
- What happens when oral literature is written down, i.e., the process of textualization
- State policies aimed at appropriating storytelling traditions and exploiting storytellers for political ends.
I will continue to occasionally pen posts about ethnic writers in the PRC, including English-language reviews of their published works in Chinese, and short translations of their fiction.
If you have suggestions on topics I should address, contact me here.
August 10, 2015