Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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pp. iii-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-ix

List of Map, Illustrations, and Tables

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p. x

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Foreword

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pp. xi-xiii

There is something ironic—some might argue perverse—about reading stories that were meant to be heard and seen as a live performance by an accomplished storyteller.1 Oral stories that have been written down are always compromised or mediated in several ways. When reduced...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xv-xvi

Many people helped in the making of this book. Foremost among them was Elizabeth Derr Jacobs, known by her friends as Bess. When we first met in the summer of 1975, Bess was still mourning...

Abbreviations

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pp. xvii-xviii

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-30

Human beings have been characterized as homo narrans—storytellers. Ursula K. Le Guin in Dancing at the Edge of the World argues that narrative is such a central, fundamental function of language that “[t]o learn to speak is to learn to tell a story” (1989:39). Coquelle Thompson, the storyteller whose narratives...

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2. An Upper Coquille Athabaskan Cultural Sketch

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pp. 31-50

Two vexing questions that confront the cultural outsider when reading or listening to another culture’s oral literature are How do these stories relate to or represent the culture of the people who once told them or continue to tell them? How do the events that occur in the tale...

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3. Features of Style and Performance in Coquelle Thompson's Storytelling

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pp. 51-68

There have been relatively few studies of the expressive style of Pacifi c Northwest Indian oral traditions. According to Melville Jacobs’s (1959c) thorough review, Franz Boas’s contribution to the analysis of folklore style was meager. Boas “did not explicitly differentiate between...

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4. Analyses of Four Stories

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pp. 69-130

I have selected four of Coquelle Thompson’s stories to analyze in this chapter. For each text I have provided an outline of the plot structure of the narrative, an analysis of features of sociocultural content and style, bibliographic citations of known regional cognate texts, then the...

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5. Oral Traditional Texts

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pp. 131-270

This chapter presents forty-three myths and tales as told by Coquelle Thompson to Elizabeth Jacobs. Each text includes a headnote consisting of a brief abstract of the story followed by a list of citations of cognate texts, primarily from the Northwest states and the Yuroks and the...

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Afterword

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pp. 271-274

I would like to close this volume of Coquelle Thompson’s myths and tales with a few thoughts about the value and importance of Native stories told directly in English. For many years in American anthropology, there has been a bias against the authenticity of Native stories recorded directly in English or some other European language...

Appendix 1: A Comparison of Jacob's and Harrington's Text Transcription Styles

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pp. 275-278

Appendix 2: A Note on Orthography and Pronunciation

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pp. 279-282

Notes

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pp. 283-298

References Cited

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pp. 299-306

Index

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pp. 307-309