Date of this Version
The Journal of American Folklore
Joseph Mali, a historian of ideas, might not have heard of folklore as an academic discipline. He does not index the term, nor does he indicate in any other way his awareness of the existence of folklore as scholarship. In this entire volume, he mentions "folklore" only three or four times: twice in connection with the traditions of nonliterate societies (pp. 102, 139), and once (p. 197) in reference to Milman Parry's—but not Albert Lord's—formulaic theory. A fourth time can be considered when he compares Vico's term sensus communis and Herder's volkgeist, establishing an affinity, if not an identity, between one of Vico's basic concepts (Schaeffer 1990) and one of the folklore's fundamental ideas. Yet, fortuitously, Mali's book is a major contribution to the study of folklore, the history of its ideas, and the analysis of its theoretical foundations.
Published as Review by Ben-Amos, D. Reviewed work: The Rehabilitation of Myth: Vico's New Science. The Journal of American Folklore 108(429): 363-369. © 1995 by the American Folklore Society.
Ben-Amos, D. (1995). Review of Joseph Mali, The Rehabilitation of Myth: Vico's New Science. The Journal of American Folklore, 108 (429), 363-369. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/541894
Date Posted: 22 September 2017
This document has been peer reviewed.