Proverbs: A Handbook

Front Cover
Greenwood Publishing Group, 2004 - Social Science - 304 pages


Proverbs offer a concise record of folk wisdom and have appeared in oral tradition, literature, art, and popular culture for centuries. Written by the foremost authority on proverbs, this reference gives high school students, undergraduates, and general readers a concise yet comprehensive overview of proverbs in world culture. The volume begins with definitions and classifications of proverbs, followed by discussions of several notable examples. The book then examines approaches to the study of proverbs and the place of proverbs in literature, politics, popular songs, and everyday life. It closes with a bibliography of print and electronic resources and a glossary. Included are numerous illustrations.

Just about everyone has heard at least one proverb, and most people have heard more. Proverbs offer a concise record of folk wisdom and have appeared in oral tradition, literature, art, and popular culture for centuries. One of the most varied and fascinating types of folklore, proverbs are studied at all levels and are of interest to a wide range of audiences. Written by the foremost authority on proverbs, this reference gives high school students, undergraduates, and general readers a concise yet comprehensive overview of proverbs in world culture.

The volume begins with definitions and classifications of proverbs and a discussion of their origin and dissemination. It then discusses several representative proverbs from around the world. This is followed by a review of scholarship on proverbs. The book next looks at how several proverbs have appeared in political speeches, literature, popular culture, and everyday life. The handbook closes with a bibliography of print and electronic resources and a glossary. Included are numerous photos illustrating the role of proverbs around the world.

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Contents

Definition and Classification
1
DEFINITION ATTEMPTS
2
PROVERB MARKERS AND MEANINGS
4
ORIGIN AND DISSEMINATION OF PROVERBS
9
TRADITIONAL FORMS RELATED TO THE PROVERB
13
THE INTERNATIONAL TYPE SYSTEM OF PROVERBS
16
TYPES OF INTERNATIONAL PROVERB COLLECTIONS
20
MAJOR ANGLOAMERICAN PROVERB COLLECTIONS
22
SOCIOLOGY PSYCHOLOGY AND PSYCHIATRY
139
USE IN FOLK NARRATIVES AND LITERATURE
142
RELIGION AND WISDOM LITERATURE
144
PEDAGOGY AND LANGUAGE TEACHING
146
PROVERBS AS ART
148
MASS MEDIA AND POPULAR CULTURE
150
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
153
Contexts
161

VARIOUS SPECIALIZED PROVERB COLLECTIONS
25
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
29
Examples and Texts
33
A CLASSICAL PROVERB ABOUT HUMAN NATURE
34
A MEDIEVAL LEGAL PROVERB FROM THE MILLERS
43
A PROVERBS WAY FROM GERMANY TO AMERICA
52
A SLANDEROUS PROVERBIAL STEREOTYPE
60
AN AMBIGUOUS PROVERB OF RELATIONSHIPS
69
AN ADVERTISING SLOGAN TURNED AMERICAN PROVERB
79
PROVERBS FROM DIFFERENT CULTURES AND LANGUAGES
88
AUTHENTIC AMERICAN PROVERBS
100
REGIONAL AMERICAN PROVERBS
106
NATIVE AMERICAN PROVERBS
108
AFRICAN AMERICAN PROVERBS
112
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
114
Scholarship and Approaches
117
PROVERB JOURNALS ESSAY VOLUMES AND BIBLIOGRAPHIES
118
PROVERB COLLECTIONS AND FUTURE PAREMIOGRAPHY
121
COMPREHENSIVE OVERVIEWS OF PAREMIOLOGY
125
EMPIRICISM AND PAREMIOLOGICAL MINIMA
127
LINGUISTIC AND SEMIOTIC CONSIDERATIONS
131
PERFORMANCE SPEECH ACTS IN SOCIAL CONTEXTS
133
ISSUES OF CULTURE FOLKLORE AND HISTORY
135
POLITICS STEREOTYPES AND WORLDVIEW
137
LORD CHESTERFIELDS TILTING AT PROVERBIAL WINDMILLS
162
FROM PROVERB TO BENJAMIN FRANKLIN AND BACK
171
ABRAHAM LINCOLNS PROVERBIAL FIGHT AGAINST SLAVERY
180
CHARLES DICKENSS PROVERBIAL LANGUAGE
189
PROVERBIAL WAR RHETORIC OF WINSTON S CHURCHILL
198
PROVERBIAL DIALECTICS IN BERTOLT BRECHT
207
BENJAMIN FRANKLINS THE WAY TO WEALTH
216
PROVERB POEMS AND POPULAR SONGS
224
PROVERBS IN CARICATURES CARTOONS AND COMICS
236
PROVERBS AND THE WORLD OF ADVERTISING
244
PROVERBS AS HEADLINES AND SLOGANS
250
Bibliography
257
PROVERB JOURNALS
258
MAJOR PROVERB STUDIES
259
MULTILINGUAL PROVERB COLLECTIONS
266
BILINGUAL PROVERB COLLECTIONS
269
ANGLOAMERICAN PROVERB COLLECTIONS
272
REGIONAL AND THEMATIC PROVERB COLLECTIONS
275
Web Resources
279
Glossary
281
Index
285
Subjects
290
Proverbs
295
Copyright

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Page 183 - Neither let us be slandered from our duty by false accusations against us, nor frightened from it by menaces of destruction to the government, nor of dungeons to ourselves. Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it.
Page 71 - Something there is that doesn't love a wall, That wants it down." I could say " Elves " to him, But it's not elves exactly, and I'd rather He said it for himself. I see him there Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed. He moves in darkness as it seems to me, Not of woods only and the shade of trees. He will not go behind his father's saying, And he likes having thought of it so well He says again, " Good fences make good neighbours.
Page 71 - Oh, just another kind of out-door game, One on a side. It comes to little more: There where it is we do not need the wall: He is all pine and I am apple orchard. My apple trees will never get across And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him. He only says, "Good fences make good neighbors.
Page 70 - MENDING WALL Something there is that doesn't love a wall, That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it And spills the upper boulders in the sun, And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
Page 201 - The gratitude of every home in our island, in our Empire, and indeed throughout the world, except in the abodes of the guilty, goes out to the British airmen who, undaunted by odds, unwearied in their constant challenge and mortal danger, are turning the tide of world war by their prowess and by their devotion. Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.
Page 161 - There is, likewise, an awkwardness of expression and words, most carefully to be avoided; such as false English, bad pronunciation, old sayings, and common proverbs; which are so many proofs of having kept bad and low company. For example : if, instead of saying that tastes are different, and that every man has his own peculiar one, you should let off a proverb, and say, That what is one man's meat is another man's poison; or else, Every one as they like, as the good man said when he kissed his cow;...

About the author (2004)

WOLFGANG MIEDER is Professor of German and Folklore at the University of Vermont. His many books include A Dictionary of American Proverbs (1992), Proverbs Are Never out of Season (1993), The Proverbial Winston S. Churchill (Greenwood, 1995), The Politics of Proverbs (1997), and numerous others. He is also the editor of Proverbium: Yearbook of International Proverb Scholarship.

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