Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Oral Tradition as History” as Want to Read:
Oral Tradition as History
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Oral Tradition as History

3.69  ·  Rating Details ·  29 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Jan Vansina’s 1961 book, Oral Tradition, was hailed internationally as a pioneering work in the field of ethno-history. Originally published in French, it was translated into English, Spanish, Italian, Arabic, and Hungarian. Reviewers were unanimous in their praise of Vansina’s success in subjecting oral traditions to intense functional analysis.
Now, Vansina—with the bene
Paperback, 272 pages
Published July 15th 1985 by University of Wisconsin Press (first published May 1st 1985)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Oral Tradition as History, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Oral Tradition as History

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mark Bowles
Aug 30, 2014 Mark Bowles rated it really liked it
Oral Tradition as Process
* The process is a transmission of messages by mouth over a period of time
* News and experience are the 2 main types of messages
* As the messages are passed down they become oral tradition
* Types of oral tradition: Memorized speech, accounts of events, fictitious tales
* Oral traditions can be a source of history
* Performance, Tradition, and Text
* The question of authenticity begins with examining the performance, then establishing the relationship to the tradition, then
Flint Johnson
Jan 02, 2014 Flint Johnson rated it it was amazing
I admit to being pleasantly surprised this book has even been received. As a graduate student I was repeatedly told not to believe any of the oral materials I might come across. My superiors were so vague, however, that I had a hard time believing them. This book lays out clearly the issues and advantages of oral materials. Using Vansina in conjunction with Molly Miller's work was a great boon to my own research. He has truly done his homework to draw the conclusions he has.
Clifton Toliver
This book is still considered to be the bible when it comes to the study of oral tradtion. It covers the full spectrum of research into this subject matter. This book is well researched, well written, and is very thought provoking. If you study oral literature this book would be an ideal addition to your library. Just make sure you get the revised 1985 edition. I think if you read it along with Ruth Finnegan's book Oral Poetry, and Albery Lord's The Singer Of tales you will learn a great deal ...more
Anthony Buccitelli
This is a surprisingly relevant book for folklorists, despite the fact that it was originally published in the 1950s and revised in the 1980s.

Many of Vansina's comments are old hat for folklorists these days; nevertheless, he offers a rigorous theoretical approach to the study of folk history that is well worth reading.
Nicolle rated it liked it
May 11, 2011
May 18, 2011 Adam rated it really liked it
Very interesting book on oral history as a tool in historical reconstruction and interpretation...
John Pavlakis
John Pavlakis rated it liked it
Mar 09, 2016
Ernesto rated it really liked it
Jun 05, 2013
Pramod Thakur
Pramod Thakur rated it it was amazing
Jul 17, 2016
Laura rated it really liked it
Jun 17, 2007
Besong rated it it was amazing
Nov 13, 2015
Jan Helldén
Jan Helldén rated it really liked it
Jul 05, 2011
Anas Prambudi
Anas Prambudi rated it liked it
Jun 10, 2014
Bret rated it really liked it
Feb 12, 2009
Randall Gwin
Randall Gwin rated it did not like it
Aug 15, 2012
Effie rated it really liked it
Oct 25, 2013
Carolyn Vieira-Martinez
Carolyn Vieira-Martinez rated it really liked it
Sep 26, 2008
Emily rated it really liked it
Dec 27, 2015
Amelia rated it really liked it
May 29, 2016
Mandy rated it really liked it
Dec 28, 2011
Julia Xu
Julia Xu rated it did not like it
Oct 26, 2013
Alexander Cahill
Alexander Cahill rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2012
Hannah Levinson
Hannah Levinson rated it liked it
Feb 18, 2013
Forrest rated it it was amazing
Oct 13, 2013
Jan 05, 2014 Marc rated it it was ok
Shelves: historiography
Theoretische uiteenzetting over de mondelinge overlevering, sterk gericht op Afrika.
Conor Wilkinson
Conor Wilkinson rated it really liked it
May 30, 2016
Royce rated it it was ok
Sep 26, 2011
Jeremy rated it liked it
Dec 16, 2008
Sean rated it liked it
Aug 28, 2012
Andrea rated it it was amazing
Sep 06, 2016
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Share This Book