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Journal ArticleDOI

The Oral Background of Persian Epics: Storytelling and Poetry

06 Jun 2008-Middle Eastern Literatures (Routledge)-Vol. 11, Iss: 1, pp 105-107
TL;DR: Yamamoto and Yamamoto discuss how oral tradition inter-connects with Middle Eastern literature and present a Brill Studies in Middle Eastern Literatures (BSIL).
Abstract: KUMIKO YAMAMOTO Brill Studies in Middle Eastern Literatures, 26. Leiden & Boston: Brill, 2003. xxiv + 191 pp. ISBN 90 04 12587 6 The central argument of this book concerns how oral tradition intera...
Citations
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Journal Article
TL;DR: In this article, various theories about Ferdowsi's sources are classified in three groups with reference to their proponents, and then each of these theories is critically and briefly analysed.
Abstract: Mohl, an early editor and translator of the Shāhnāme, began the discussion on Ferdowsi’s sources in the Shāhnāme in 1878. From that time until now, it has been one of main issues of discussion among expertson the Shāhnāme and Iranian culture. One can find various theories on Ferdowsi’s sources in the numerous works and articles which are published ever so often. One of the latest works in this field is Kumiko Yamamoto’s book The Oral Background of Persian Epics: Storytelling and Poetry. In the present article, first, various theories about Ferdowsi’s sources are classified in three groups with reference to their proponents, and then each of these theories is critically and briefly analysed. After a detailed introduction to Kumiko Yamamoto’s work, it is evaluated in view of the different theories proposed for the sources of the Shāhnāme. The present author favours the theory of both oral and written sources in the genesis of the Shāhnāme, and, in light of this, some strengths as well as weaknesses of this work are discussed in this extended review.

2 citations

DOI
02 Feb 2010
TL;DR: The Shâhnâme de Ferdowsi as mentioned in this paper trahit la diversite des materiaux compiles par Ferdowi et l'extraordinaire fecondite de son œuvre en litterature persane : de two grandes parties peuvent etre distinguees ; the premiere, plus mythologique, se refere a de tres anciennes sources religieuses ; the second, plus historique, retrace l'histoire des Sassanides a partir de chroniques.
Abstract: Le Shâhnâme de Ferdowsi trahit la diversite des materiaux compiles par Ferdowsi et l'extraordinaire fecondite de son œuvre en litterature persane : deux grandes parties peuvent etre distinguees ; la premiere, plus mythologique, se refere a de tres anciennes sources religieuses ; la seconde, plus historique, retrace l'histoire des Sassanides a partir de chroniques. Terminee a une epoque ou l'Iran commencait a etre gouverne par des dynasties turques, le Shâhnâme propose un nouveau role a la noblesse et aux erudits iraniens : l' " iranisation " culturelle et administrative des nouvelles cours.

2 citations

01 Jan 2013
TL;DR: In this paper, the role of concepts in the formation of communication messages in Firdausi's Shahnama is analyzed and analyzed through qualitative and quantitative analysis using SPSS software.
Abstract: Shahnama is a symbol and a complete pattern of human communication. By creation of this great work of history, Firdausi has always kept alive the identity of Iran and has demonstrated all humanity and spirit of heroic epic of Iran. Thus, the existence of this glorious history is sufficient for each Iranian. Shahnama is a communication message in the form of a book and media for cultural development in Iran. This research is interdisciplinary, drawing connections between Persian literature and communication sciences as a new field of studies in communications, which has studied communicative concepts and theories in Shahnama. The study analyzes the role of concepts in the formation of communication messages in Firdausi’s Shahnama. The research method is qualitative content analysis and quantitative content analysis as well as study of documents. The study sample included 11 main stories of Shahnama which were 14,787 verses and were analyzed on both levels of qualitative and quantitative analysis. The concepts in Shahnama are categorized in four general categories of human concepts, spatial concepts, animal concepts and symbolic concepts which are studied and analyzed through qualitative and quantitative analysis using SPSS software.

2 citations

Peer ReviewDOI
TL;DR: In this article , the authors compare the Book of Ḥamza with the Shāhnāma (Book of Kings), the two most popular works performed by the storytellers of Safavid Iran (1501-1736), focusing on their heroes.
Abstract: Abstract This paper compares the Ḥamzanāma (Book of Ḥamza) with the Shāhnāma (Book of Kings), the two most popular works performed by the storytellers of Safavid Iran (1501–1736), focusing on their heroes, Ḥamza and Rustam, respectively. Following an overview of the Ḥamzanāma that helps to identify its main intertexts, themes, and narrative elements: the Shāhnāma; the Islamic Alexander tradition; and ʿayyārī (trickery); the paper re-examines how Ḥamza is modelled after Rustam by looking at his epithets and narrative functions. It then turns to their differences, which are most discernible in Rustam's epithet used as the name of Ḥamza's enemy, the split between the ideals of jawānmardī (generosity) and ʿayyārī, and Ḥamza's unheroic weaknesses. This latter serves to emphasize God's compassion at his martyrdom while giving storytellers an impetus to continue their performances.
Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examines how Zeyā al-Din Barani may have imagined that contemporary audiences would consume his Trikh-e Firuz Shāhi, and whether it was only read visually or also read aloud (directed at the...
Abstract: This article examines how Zeyā al-Din Barani may have imagined that contemporary audiences would consume his Tārikh-e Firuz Shāhi. Would it only be read visually or also read aloud (directed at the...
References
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01 Jan 2019
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors trace the musical constitution of moral, economic, material, and social relations between rural communities and the state in the Sultanate of Oman and argue that communities embedded within the authoritarian state hegemony of the country form and affirm social relations with the state through its embodied proxy, via the reciprocal exchange of state-directed giving and praise poetry responses.
Abstract: Poems to Open Palms: Praise Performance and the State in the Sultanate of Oman by Bradford J. Garvey Advisor: Jane C. Sugarman This dissertation traces the musical constitution of moral, economic, material, and social relations between rural communities and the state in the Sultanate of Oman. I argue that communities embedded within the authoritarian state hegemony of the Sultanate form and affirm social relations with the state through its embodied proxy, Sultan Qābūs bin Ṣa‘īd Āl Bū Ṣa‘īd, via the reciprocal exchange of state-directed giving and praise poetry responses. The circuit of exchange catalyzes the social production of political legitimacy and ensures continued generous distribution by mythopoetically presenting such cyclicity as resulting from elite and non-elite mutuality. This praise poetry is rendered within two song and dance complexes: al-razḥa, a collective war dance with drumming and antiphonal choral singing, and al-‘āzī, a choral ode with a solo singer, tight poetic structure, and a chorus of responders. Through a close analysis of the content and context of praise poems sung by Arab men’s performance troupes experienced over a year of participant observation fieldwork, I argue that praise poetry is an overlooked site for the construction and negotiation of state political legitimacy. Drawing on heterodox and Gramscian political economy, I show how musical performance operates within broader circuits of exchange by functioning as a site wherein non-market economic logics are fused with moral, performative, and political norms. Instead of simply tracing a circuit of utilitarian exchange (praise for gifts for praise), I focus on the how gifts and their responses reciprocally negotiate social relations between state elites and non-elites. By focusing on the words and actions of nonelites as they integrate the various proffered benefits of a distributive state into their own

84 citations

MonographDOI
17 Apr 2018
TL;DR: In this article, Hameen-Anttila analyzed the lost sixth-century history of the Sasanians, its lost Arabic translations, and the sources of Firdawsi's Shāhnāme.
Abstract: In Khwadāynāmag. The Middle Persian Book of Kings Jaakko Hameen-Anttila analyses the lost sixth-century historiographical work of the Sasanians, its lost Arabic translations, and the sources of Firdawsī's Shāhnāme .

33 citations

Dissertation
02 Aug 2013
Abstract: Based on a broad survey of the reception of Firdausī‘s Shāhnāma in medieval times, this dissertation argues that Firdausī‘s oeuvre was primarily perceived as a book of wisdom and advice for kings and courtly élites. The medieval reception of the Shāhnāma is clearly manifested in the comments of medieval authors about Firdausī and his work, and in their use of the Shāhnāma in the composition of their own works. The production of ikhtiyārāt-i Shāhnāmas (selections from the Shāhnāma) in medieval times and the remarkable attention of the authors of mirrors for princes to Firdausī‘s opus are particularly illuminating in this regard. The survey is complemented by a close textual reading of the Ardashīr cycle in the Shāhnāma in comparison with other medieval historical accounts about Ardashīr, in order to illustrate how history in the Shāhnāma is reduced to only a framework for the presentation of ideas and ideals of kingship. Based on ancient Persian beliefs regarding the ideal state of the world, I argue that Ardashīr in the Shāhnāma is represented as a Saviour of the world. Within this context, I offer new interpretations of the symbolic tale of Ardashīr‘s fight against a giant worm, and explain why the idea of the union of kingship and religion, a major topic in almost all medieval Persian mirrors for princes, has often been attributed to Ardashīr. Finally, I compare iii the Ardashīr cycle in the Shāhnāma with nine medieval Persian mirrors for princes to demonstrate that the ethico-political concepts contained in them, as well as the portrayal of Ardashīr, remain more or less the same in all these works. Study of the Shāhnāma as a mirror for princes, as this study shows, not only reveals the meaning of its symbolic tales, but also sheds light on the pre-Islamic roots of some of the ethicopolitical concepts presented in the medieval Perso-Islamic literature of wisdom and advice for kings and courtiers.

20 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The special issue of the journal of Iranian Studies as discussed by the authors takes its theme from Ferdowsi's Shahnameh seen as a work of world literature, a term (Weltliteratur) which has earlier exponents.
Abstract: This special issue of the journal of Iranian Studies takes its theme from Ferdowsi's Shahnameh 1 seen as a work of world literature—a term (Weltliteratur) which, though it has earlier exponents,2 h...

16 citations

Book
01 Jan 2015
TL;DR: In this article, a collection of essays from scholars from various areas of Iranian and comparative studies, among which are the pre-Islamic Zoroastrian tradition with its wide network of influences in late antique Mesopotamia, notably among the Jewish milieu; classical Persian literature in its manifold genres; medieval Persian history; oral history; folklore and more.
Abstract: The volume demonstrates the cultural centrality of the oral tradition for Iranian studies. It contains contributions from scholars from various areas of Iranian and comparative studies, among which are the pre-Islamic Zoroastrian tradition with its wide network of influences in late antique Mesopotamia, notably among the Jewish milieu; classical Persian literature in its manifold genres; medieval Persian history; oral history; folklore and more. The essays in this collection embrace both the pre-Islamic and Islamic periods, both verbal and visual media, as well as various language communities (Middle Persian, Persian, Tajik, Dari) and geographical spaces (Greater Iran in pre-Islamic and Islamic medieval periods; Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan of modern times). Taken as a whole, the essays reveal the unique blending of oral and literate poetics in the texts or visual artefacts each author focuses upon, conceptualizing their interrelationship and function.

14 citations