There is no better way for students to learn about cultural diversity than to study the folklore and folkways of different ethnic groups. The work of over 200 expert contributors, this massive encyclopedia authoritatively and engagingly surveys folklife and traditions from around the world. Each of the four volumes covers the countries and cultural groups of a particular continent or geographical region, and the first volume also includes 39 topics and themes central to world folklore. Each of the more than 170 culture or country entries explores the background, belief system, oral and theatrical traditions, material culture, and contemporary concerns of a particular culture. Each concludes with an extended list of further readings. A generous selection of maps and illustrations makes this encyclopedia especially attractive to students and general readers.
China . . . Malta . . . Madagascar . . . Wales . . . and Texas: these are among the many exotic, distant lands that capture our minds and imaginations. In an era of increasing globalization, students, general readers, and business professionals need to know about the world and its varied ways. So too, a knowledge of world cultures is fundamental to an understanding of America’s ethnically rich society. Folklore isn’t just about the long ago and far away. It’s about the here and now, and there’s no better way to learn about cultural diversity than to study the folklore and folkways of different ethnic groups.
More than just Cinderella and other fairy tales, folklore encompasses the whole realm of traditional beliefs and activities that define a culture. The most comprehensive work of its kind, this massive encyclopedia engagingly and authoritatively surveys folklife and traditions from around the world. Through its vast scope and lengthy entries, it transcends other references on particular national or regional folklores and is the most ambitious undertaking of its type. Organized in four volumes, the encyclopedia provides convenient access to information about folklore generally and to the traditions of particular regions:
Along with the expertise of the contributors, of Volume Editor William M. Clements, and of Advisory Editor Thomas A. Green, the encyclopedia draws upon a distinguished board of internationally recognized scholars, including: Roger D. Abrahams, Cristina Bacchilega, Gillian Bennett, Mary Ellen Brown, James R. Dow, Alessandro Falassi, Barbro Klein, Peter Knecht, Natalie Kononenko, Frances M. Malpezzi, Margaret Mills, M. D. Muthukumaraswamy, Gerald Pocius, and John S. Ryan.
Because folklore is the essence of daily life, this encyclopedia addresses the curriculum needs of high school students and is also an indispensable resource for teachers. In addition, anyone researching folklore in a public library will find this the first place to look for detailed information about cultural traditions around the world.
- Brings together the knowledge of more than 200 specialists from around the world.
- Provides 39 extended entries on topics central to world folklore.
- Details the folklore and folkways of roughly 170 cultural groups.
- Entries discuss the background, beliefs, oral and theatrical traditions, arts and crafts, and contemporary concerns of each cultural group.
- Each entry cites numerous works for further reading.
- A generous selection of maps and illustrations makes world folklore come to life.
- A list of entries and a cumulative subject index, repeated in each volume, offer convenient access to the vast body of information contained in the encyclopedia.
- A selected, general bibliography directs students and general readers to the most important broad studies of world folklore.
- A glossary defines key terms, theories, and concepts.