The Thousand and One Nights02 Mar 2004 16:48
How did the collection develop? When did the frame-story develop? Where exactly does our modern text come from, and how was it composed? Who composed it? How does this kind of collaborative, anonymous manuscript prose composition contrast to oral epic poetry? Narrative structure.
One particular story which fascinates me is that of Iram, "the city of pillars".
- J. L. Borges, "The Translators of The Thousand and One Nights" [Reprinted in, e.g., the Selected Non-Fictions anthology. Thanks to Fazal Majid for reminding me of this.]
- To read:
- Sandra Naddaff, Arabesque: Narrative Structure and the Aesthetics of Repetition in the 1001 Nights
- Christa A. Tuczay, "Motifs in The Arabian Nights and in Ancient and Medieval European Literature: A Comparison", Folklore 116 (2005): 272--291 ["This paper is a contribution to the ongoing debate about the origins of parallel motifs in The Arabian Nights and in ancient and medieval popular and learned literature about exotic lands of the East. This preliminary survey focuses on seven related motifs: the magnetic mountain, the congealed sea, flying griffins, automata and genies, the mysterious walled city, the living island, and the underground river. This paper is intended as a contribution toward a motif-Index of The Arabian Nights in order to facilitate further comparative study of the motifs involved."]
- Maria Warner, Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights [Blurb]