Date of this Version
The Journal of American Folklore
With a rare flair for erudition, Haim Schwarzbaum repeats his performance in the 1968 volume of Studies in Jewish and World Folklore and presents us with a book that is bound to be a keystone in any comparative fable research. As in his previous comprehensive study, Schwarzbaum has chosen an existing extensive collection of texts, each narrative of which he annotates exhaustively. The result is nothing less than a monumental collection of analytical bibliographical monographs that detail the history and diffusion of some fables central in Asian and European folk-literary traditions. In his introduction Schwarzbaum discusses fable use in political oratory and homiletic exegesis. In the main, he draws upon examples from Jewish tradition and classical literature; however, whenever possible and applicable, he extends his references to fable uses in literary documents ranging from ancient Mesopotamia to modern Europe. The introductory essay concludes with a critical analysis of the current scholarship about the text that Schwarzbaum uses for his study, The Mishle Shu'alim (Fox Fables) of Rabbi Berechiah Ha-Nakdan.
Published as Review of Ben-Amos, D. Reviewed work: The Mishle Shu'alim (Fox Fables) of Rabbi Berechiah Ha-Nakdan: A Study in Comparative Folklore and Fable Lore. The Journal of American Folklore 95(376), 222-224. © 1982 by the American Folklore Society.
Ben-Amos, D. (1982). Review of Haim Schwarzbaum, The Mishle Shu'alim (Fox Fables) of Rabbi Berechiah Ha-Nakdan: A Study in Comparative Folklore and Fable Lore. The Journal of American Folklore, 95 (376), 222-224. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/540728
Date Posted: 22 September 2017
This document has been peer reviewed.