Mary Ellen Snodgrass Encyclopedia of Fable

ISBN 13: 9781576070260

Encyclopedia of Fable

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9781576070260: Encyclopedia of Fable

Fable is one of the most interesting genres of world literature. From ancient times to the present, fabulists have sought to convey moral points through tales which typically involve animals. This text presents a guide to the subject, covering major works, characters and situations as well as the genre's creators, collectors and illustrators.

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About the Author:

Mary Snodgrass

Mary Ellen Snodgrass, an educator and expert 'n class'cal mythology, l'terature, and the human't'es, holds an M.A. degree 'n Engl'sh from Appalach'an State Un'vers'ty.

From Booklist:

For centuries children and adults have been entertained, enlightened, and instructed by fables and their underlying moral messages. In her fifth contribution to the ABC-CLIO Literary Companion series, Snodgrass explores not just the traditional realm of fable but the "wealth of world literature that belongs in the domain of illustrative wisdom lore." Thus, she also encompasses such areas as cruelty jokes, exemplary tales, pourquoi stories, and storytelling, and she includes animal stories that are not generally considered fables.

Of the 68 entries, 33 are biographical treatments of principal fabulists, among them Aesop, Geoffrey Chaucer, Marie de France, and James Thurber. Prominent illustrators of fables are treated in a single article. Offering broader perspective on the history and development of fable and briefer sketches of additional writers, translators, and collectors of fables are a variety of more general articles that focus on fable as a genre and its related forms, historic periods, and the fable heritage of specific civilizations, nationalities, or religious and ethnic groups (e.g., African American, Celtic, Greek, and Oriental). Only a small number of entries treat specific fables or fable collections (for instance, Animal Farm, Panchatantra, and A Thousand and One Nights) and characters or character types (such as Brer Rabbit, Reynard the Fox, and Trickster). Ranging in length from two to thirteen pages, entries are often accompanied by black-and-white illustrations and frequently provide see also references to related articles. All articles conclude with abbreviated citations to sources consulted. Additional features include chronological, author, and title lists of major fables and fable collections and a brief list of films based on fables. Bibliographies of primary and secondary sources cite selected print, audiovisual, and Internet materials.

Although the index covers authors, titles, and topics, it unfortunately includes only a small number of the titles of individual fables that are discussed or mentioned in the entries. Thus, such popular fables as "The Hare and the Tortoise" and "The Fox and the Grapes" do not appear in the index, even though these titles are mentioned in various entries, and the former is the subject of a full-page illustration. Like the aforementioned title list, the index follows the questionable practice of alphabetizing foreign-language titles under their initial articles. Of even greater concern are the numerous careless errors, including incorrect page references in the index, misspelled and misused words, inconsistent and incorrect citation of certain titles, and nonsensical statements, that mar this work. Its most serious limitation, however, is its paucity of entries, which results in an overemphasis on biographical and historical material and a deemphasis on individual fables and fable motifs. In a truly encyclopedic work, one would expect to find articles on specific animals in fables (such as the crow, lion, and wolf), on plant fables, and on common fable motifs (such as vanity, greed, social status), as well as entries providing synopses of and commentary on many of the most well known and best-beloved fables.

A number of dictionaries of folklore, mythology, and legend cover fable, but this is the first encyclopedia devoted exclusively to the genre. Although it is far from the definitive reference work on fable and suffers from serious flaws, its lengthy articles provide overviews that could be used to supplement the more specific entries pertaining to fable in such standard compilations as Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology, and Legend (Harper, 1972) and the Facts On File Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend (1988).

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Book Description ABC-CLIO Ltd, United Kingdom, 1998. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Fable is one of the most interesting genres of world literature. From ancient times to the present, fabulists have sought to convey moral points through tales which typically involve animals. This text presents a guide to the subject, covering major works, characters and situations as well as the genre s creators, collectors and illustrators. Bookseller Inventory # APC9781576070260

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