Posts tagged with ‘oral poetry’

The Epic of Askia Mohammed by Nouhou Malio, trans. Thomas A. Hale

This is an interesting one: a piece of oral poetry, transcribed from a performance by a griot*, Nouhou Malio, in Niger. To quote the introduction: The Epic of Askia Mohammed┬árecounts the life of the most famous ruler of the Songhay empire, a man who reigned in Gao, an old city in present-day eastern Mali, from […]

How I Escaped My Certain Fate by Stewart Lee

For those of you who don’t know, Stewart Lee is a stand-up comedian. This book is built around the transcripts of three of his shows, each heavily footnoted with his own technical comments: why he thinks things are funny, notes on delivery, where jokes came from, his comedic influences and so on. Preceding each transcript […]

God’s cock and hen

I woke up this morning to see something fluttering against the inside of the window-panes. Without my glasses, I couldn’t think what it was – it seemed too big for a moth and too small and whirring for a bird. It turned out to be a wren. They’re such nice things, but they are slightly […]

Haida oral poetry – talk at RFH

I went today to a talk with Margaret Atwood and Robert Bringhurst about his translations of Haida oral literature. ‘Oral literature’ is technically an oxymoron, I guess. The Haida, btw, were a Native American people living on islands in the Pacific Northwest – off the coast of what’s now British Columbia. The subject matter itself […]