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Steve Sanfield Folklore Library Seeking Home 0 R. Vanscoyoc   This announcement is intended to express interest in finding a home for the Folklore, Folktale, and Myth Library of recently-deceased California poet, folklorist, storyteller, and author Steve Sanfield (1937-2015). Sanfield was an early participant in the Northern California “re-inhabitory” and bioregional literary culture. Also, an editor of the celebrated little magazine KUKSU (“A Journal of Backcountry Writing”), the first storyteller-in-residence under the California Arts Council of the 1970s, and a member of the literary and intellectual community around fellow No. California writer Gary Snyder. As a nationally known storyteller and teacher of folklore, Sanfield built a sizeable and impressive library of folklore, folktales, and myth over a period of thirty years (400 – 500 volumes). Representing the interests of the family, I would be most interested to correspond with any private organization or public institution that may be interested in acquiring this library, or a selection of it; we are open to all kinds of suggestions for possible homes for this library. Moreover, the Sanfield Family is open to offering these library holdings as a gift to an appropriate, interested party. Below is a brief description of the library; I would be happy to provide a partial catalogue, or just greater detail, to anyone expressing serious interest in this collection. While not an academic collection per se, the Sanfield Folklore and Folktale library represents the broad and sustained engagements of a serious writer and amateur scholar. The library contains an impressive collection of California Indian mythography, and wide holdings related to the Native Southwest and the Great Plains. These texts are mainly early University Press editions, both softcover in excellent condition and hard cover editions; also includes the relevant volumes of the Smithsonian Handbook of No. American Indians for the Western States. There are collections of British folktales and fairytales, a 4 volume Dictionary of the British Folktale (Indiana UP) and the Dover volumes of English and Scottish Popular Ballads, selections of Celtic folklore. A broad collection of Russian and Eastern European folktales, numerous fine editions of the Grimm’s Complete, and an expansive holding of traditional Jewish tales and texts on Judaism and storytelling. Additional holdings related to classical Greek and Roman myth; circumpolar shamanism and song; and Asian and Near Asian folklore. Again, the library – in total – amounts to over 400 volumes; we do not expect to gift this collection intact, though would be open to that. What is more likely is the acquisition of a judicious curation of the folk library. The upper limit, chronologically, of the holdings seems to stop at editions printed in the mid to late 1990s; there are plenty of classic editions in fine, hardback editions. This is only meant as a preliminary description to, hopefully, arouse interest and possible suggestions for the future of these holdings. More information on the library is available for any serious party. Please write to Matthew O’Malley, at, or telephone (510) 427.9217. With thanks for your consideration, on behalf of the family of Steve Sanfield.
by R. Vanscoyoc
Thursday, May 14, 2015
Witzel book recently reviewed 0 L. Haring JFRR Reviews recently reviewed an apparently dreadful book about mythology by one Witzel. The reviewer expressed surprise that this person could be at Harvard and that Oxford UP had published it. I write only to repeat the same surprise: what has become of peer reviewing, in an era when copy-editing is outsourced to who knows where? Oxford?! Really?! Maybe we should all start limiting ourselves to online publishing.
by L. Haring
Friday, December 06, 2013
crafts 0 N. Kononenko I have a question.  Has anyone written about the reuse of a craft object for other purposes?  What I am dealing with is embroidery, on the front of a shirt, for example, which, when the shirt becomes worn, is cut off and used as the front of another shirt.  Sometimes it is used elsewhere in the garment or not in a garment at all but, say, for a comb case.  I'm dealing with Ukrainian material and I know that Ukrainian costume books and embroidery books do not write about this.  They deal with the regional characteristics of embroidery, both motifs and embroidery techniques.  New ones have New Age-y discussions of symbols.  But nothing about how a piece of embroidery "lives" in the tradition.  Can anyone help?  We were thinking that someone writing about quilts might have said somthing about this, but I'm not up on the literature about quilts. 
by N. Kononenko
Friday, January 21, 2011

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