Western Folklore

Vol. 76 No. 1 – Winter, 2017


The Critical Conservationist George Gibson and Patterns of Vernacular Resistance
Rachel Hopkin

ABSTRACT: This article examines how an eastern Kentucky banjo player harnesses a range of vernacular initiatives to criticize and counter unwelcome outside incursions. Musician George Gibson feels his native region has been “culturally strip-mined” by revivalists and scholars, while corporate management of natural resources has left local people exploited. Employing a multi-pronged approach that includes music, pedagogy, historical research, and environmental protection, Gibson works to combat these external forces in a manner that draws on a number of pre-existing local traditions. KEYWORDS: Conservation, Environment, Music, Local History, Protest.

Truth and the Quilt Researcher’s Rage: the Roles of Narrative and Belief in the Quilt Code Debate
Laurel Horton

ABSTRACT: The public response to the publication of Hidden in Plain View offers a complex example of a controversy involving the competing interests of publishers, folklorists, educators, and a variety of public audiences. As an observer and, at times, participant in the various dialogues created among these groups over several years, the author traces a personal trajectory through many layers of meaning. This essay synthesizes personal experience, reflection, and interpretation, serving, in effect, as a case study in reflexive ethnology and the ideal of objectivity. KEYWORDS: Quilt Code, Belief, Narrative, Oral Tradition, African American

Frontstage Backstage: Participatory Music and the Festive Sacred in Essaouira, Morocco
John Schaefer

ABSTRACT: Among the varieties of music festivals, sacred music festivals attract new auditors, leading to new ways of thinking and living. Folk music festivals can invite passive audiences to participate in co-creating music. But what do festivals offer insiders and members? In Morocco, even as it contributes to the weakening of exclusive claims to authority within a minority musical and spiritual community, the Gnawa music festival in Essaouira helps to revitalize that same community. KEYWORDS: Ethnomusicology; Folk Festivals; Popular Culture; Afro-Maghrebi Culture


Jennifer Snook, American Heathens: The Politics of Identity in a Pagan Religious Movement
Reviewed by Irina Sadovina

Jonathan H. X. Lee and Kathleen Nadeau, Asian American Identities and Practices: Folkloric Expressions in Everyday Life
Reviewed by Fariha I. Khan

Jack V. Haney, The Complete Folktales of A. N. Afanas'ev. Volumes 1 & 2
Reviewed by Victoria Somoff

Jane C. Beck, Daisy Tuner's Kin: An African American Family Saga.
Reviewed by Wanda G. Addison

Isidore Okpewho, Blood on the Tides: The Ozidi Saga and Oral Epic Narratology
Reviewed by Joseph L. Mbele

Phil Jamison, Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance, and: Susan Eike Spalding, Appalachian Dance: Creativity and Continuity in Six Communities
Reviewed by Jerry Duke

Ken Perlman, Couldn't Have a Wedding Without the Fiddler: The Story of Traditional Fiddling on Prince Edward Island
Reviewed by Lesley Ham

Ronald D. Cohen and Rachel Clare Donaldson, Roots of the Revival: American & British Folk Music in the 1950s
Reviewed by Kip Lornell

Peter Manuel, Tales, Tunes, and Tassa Drums: Retention and Invention in Indo-Caribbean Music
Reviewed by Christopher L. Ballengee

Sally Gati, Culture Collector
Reviewed by Adriana Helbig

Lars Krutak, Tattoo Traditions of Native North America: Ancient and Contemporary Expressions of Identity
Reviewed by Margo Demello