BAKKER, E., and A. KAHANE, (eds.),
Written Voices, Spoken Signs. Tradition, performance, and the Epic Text.
Harvard University Press, Cambridge (Mass.), / London, 1997. VIII,305p. Original off-white cloth. Series: Center for Hellenic Studies Colloquia. Nice copy. 'This collection of papers issues from a Center for Hellenic Studies colloquium organized by Egbert Bakker and Ahuvia Kahane which was held at the Center in June 1994. It is the first volume in a new series devoted to CHS colloquia forthcoming from Harvard University Press. Of the nine papers collected here (arranged alphabetically by the authors' last names), those by the editors, John Miles Foley, Andrew Ford, Richard Martin, and Gregory Nagy focus on Homeric questions; contributions by Franz Bäuml, Wulf Oesterreicher, and Ursula Schaefer address questions of orality and performance in medieval texts. What these diverse studies have in common is what the editors call a poststructuralist approach to language and discourse: 'Attention to strategies, means, and modes, rather than simply to contents.' (...) What perhaps makes the volume most useful as a volume is that it samples the work of major players in the field of oral poetry and linguistics who have written more extensively elsewhere on similar topics, using similar approaches. In each case the interested reader will probably want to have recourse to the more extended treatments. That said, these essays hang together well enough, and the editors have taken pains to cross-reference them to one another where appropriate. (...) There are enlightening, even important essays in this volume.' (M.D. USHER in Bryn Mawr Classical Review 98.1.25).