Tell Me A Story... v1.0

Being an annotated meta-bibliography (plus a few goodies) of books, chapbooks, articles, movies, videotapes, audiotapes, CDs, websites, and events about and for storytelling in all of its humble majesty and sundry forms.

for dian


Who are you? What do you want?

I was surprised recently as I watched a favourite science-fiction show, Babylon 5, to hear the deep wisdom that is posed as the two questions above. The main storyline is about a cosmic war at the centre of which is found our intrepid heras and heros. Babylon 5 is a space station that is a combination of international way-station (Samarkand plus New York City) and that wonderfully mythical, b-movie Casablanca - that neutral territory at the edge of violence. Two forces vie to influence our intrepids one group, the enigmatic Vorlons, always asking , "who are you?"; the other group, the ominous Shadows, asking, "what do you want?" These are perfect twentieth century echoes of the ancient inscriptions at the Oracle of Delphi: "know thyself" and "nothing in excess". Another version of the history of human civilization perhaps: from pithy godly commandments to pithy ambiguous questions? I'm not sure if we can count this as advance.

But commandment or question, both are challenges to us messy and complicated humans to see meaning in our actions. And such is the gift that I have found in the worlds of storytelling through which I walk daily. And, as you will see from the sections of this annotated meta-bibliography (it's about more than just books), my wanderings are varied. I share these wanderings with you as a work-in-progress. There are plenty more titles I could list here (and will in future versions) and there's plenty more i'd like to say about items listed without comment. Not everything listed counts as a favourite but all, I believe, are worth knowing about. Relevance is, of course, determined by your needs and not by my prejudices. I have, nonetheless created the 7 sections into which I have organized items:

  1. Story Collections
  2. Storytelling & Teaching
  3. Orality, Oral History
  4. Myth, Anthropology & Comparative Religions
  5. Psychology, Sociology, History
  6. Autobiography & Literature
  7. Miscellaneous

This, of course, requires decisions that will inevitably reflect my choices, my biases, my limits. I offer you this document as part of a dialogue. I invite your participation with me as I distribute this and produce future versions. I welcome challenge and criticism, critical questions and reactions of all kinds. Thanks is always nice too, but i'd rather hear from you about what you connected with, what has made a difference. It's about sharing stories. I'd love to know what you are up to that this meta-bibliography might have helped you with.

Storytelling for me is simultaneously a playfully whimsical practice and a deeply serious spiritual journey. Humourous and sorrow-full, stories are about all that life and this universe has to offer. Stories challenge us to find meaning in every act that we do. From the myths and religions that identify peoples to the anecdotes that we tell each other of our days, stories are as available to us as language. This point is made poignantly in an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation called Darmok. (Oh, oh! Two science-fiction shows mentioned on one page; what'll happen to my credibility now?) In this, my single favourite episode, Captain Picard learns, through tragedy, that an alien species' incomprehensible language is based entirely on metaphor rooted in the myths and stories of the alien's culture. The only way for Picard to understand the alien's language would be to know all the stories within which the language is rooted. Though it may seem a science-fiction show concept this is pretty much how our language works: through metaphor and story. It's that simple. Story and language are one and the same thing. We are each of us born storytellers.

A last note for now. I have used Venus' mirror, , to indicate those books that could also be placed in a feminist/women's studies section. My choice is to integrate these titles in the various sections. But I also want to call attention to the special contribution of feminist scholarship and activism to the study of narrative, the use of stories and the writing/telling of critical biographies and auto-biographies. Most of my teachers in this life have been women and I owe a special debt to these friends and to feminist scholarship in general that has guided me in the ways that I engage stories as well as tell my own. Similarly I owe a debt to the work of anti-racist scholarship and activism which I will expand in future versions.In solidarity

chris cavanagh, toronto, ontario - March 30, 1997


Story Collections

We share a commonwealth of tales around this world. This is a sampling of some of the first few that i've grabbed off my shelves. I have a fondness for collections that contain tellable stuff, but apart from that, I gather from everywhere that I can.

AUSUBEL, NATHAN (ed.)
1948 A Treasury of Jewish Folklore: Stories, Traditions, Legends, Humor, Wisdom and Folk Songs of the Jewish People. New York: Crown Publishers.
 

No library is complete without this collection. And every person's life is richer for having read this.

BUBER, MARTIN
1947 Tales of the Hasidim: The Early Masters. New York: Schocken Books.
1948 Tales of the Hasidim: The Later Masters. New York: Schocken Books.
 

Martin Buber, whose ideas I still think can help to bring peace to our troubled world, loved the simple tales of the Hasidim. In these two collections he presents them lovingly in all their simplicity and directness. I find that there is a striking similarity between these tales and those found in Sufi, Zen and early Christian tradition.

CHUANG TZU (BURTON, WATSON, tr.)
1968 The Complete Works of Chuang Tzu. New York: Columbia University Press.
 

Well, if you've ever wondered about Taoism this is the original thing. This is the best complete english translation. It contains hundreds of little stories that are, at once, whimsical and deeply philosophical. The following wee bit I used to entitle and guide my Master's paper at York University:

One morning Chuang Tzu woke from a dream, turned to his friend and said:

"I just dreamt that I was a butterfly. But now I do not know if I was a man dreaming he was a butterfly or if now I am a butterfly dreaming he is a man."

DELATTRE, PIERRE
1971 Tales of a Dalai Lama. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.
1993 Episodes. St. Paul, MN: Graywolf Press.
FAST, HOWARD
1975 Time & The Riddle. Pasadena, CA: Ward Ritchie Press.
FELDMAN, CHRISTINA & JACK KORNFIELD (eds.)
1991 Stories of the Spirit, Stories of the Heart: Parables of the Spiritual Path from Around the World. New York: Harper Collins.
 

This is a collection of hundreds of short tales from many spiritual traditions around the world. Both editors are Buddhist teachers. Jack Kornfield is a well-known West Coast Vipassana Buddhist whom I have seen give one of his weekly public talks/teachings. This was a cover-to-cover read for me which is to say that I have a special fondness for spiritual tales. This collection is especially rich in Buddhist tales (Zen, Taoist, Tibetan and Pali), as you might guess, but also has plenty from many other world traditions including Jewish, Sufi, Christian, Hindu, North American Native.

GALEANO, EDUARDO
1985 Memory of Fire: Genesis. New York: Pantheon.
1987 Memory of Fire: Faces & Masks. New York: Pantheon.
1988 Memory of Fire: Century of the Wind. New York: Pantheon.
1991 The Book of Embraces. New York: W.W.Norton & Co.
1993 Walking Words. New York: W.W.Norton & Co.
 

Eduardo Galeano is one a few authors whose works I buy sight unseen. His work has taught me to see magic in the most humble and unnoticeable gesture. His words are a gift of such magic as I think was once a daily companion of all people and which, with the rise of rationalist science, we have abandoned. All five of these books are composed of short (somewhat anecdotal) passages that range from 100 to 500 words. It is a style that Galeano uses to express a poignancy that can often be heartbreaking. The trilogy, Memory of Fire is a different history of the Americas than has ever been written. Based on hundreds of sources Galeano has found the most remarkable events to recount. Though they are mostly about resistance and conquest, there is also a smattering of humourous pieces. There is an air about this book for which no word exists with which to describe it. If we could compose a new word out of melancholy and whimsy that might do it. I often had to set these books down as I was frequently overcome by strong emotion. The Book of Embraces is a memoir, also composed of many vignettes. They are simultaneously personal, parable, myth, anecdote. This book has more whimsy than the trilogy but is equally moving. Walking Words is made up of tales that are like folktales re-invented within a dreamworld. They are interspersed with poetic pieces called "Window on...", for instance:

Window on Arrival

Pilar and Daniel Weinberg's son was baptized on the coast. The baptism taught him what was sacred.

They gave him a sea shell: "So you'll learn to love the water."

They opened a cage and let a bird go free: "So you'll learn to love the air."

They gave him a geranium: "So you'll learn to love the earth."

And they gave him a little bottle sealed up tight: "Don't ever, ever open it. So you'll learn to love mystery."

KANE, ALICE & EDITH FOWKE (ed.)
1983 Songs and Sayings of an Ulster Childhood. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart.
 

Alice is one of Canada's national storytelling treasures whom I have been privileged to meet and see perform a number of times. Now over 88 she still lives on her own a few blocks from me. Alice and her family immigrated to Canada from Belfast when she was thirteen. She brought with her a wealth of remembered songs and sayings that have been put down in this unique memoir with the help of the late Edith Fowke, Canada's leading folklorist. One of my favourites is:

O Lady Moon, your horns point to the East.

Shine, be increased.

O Lady Moon, your horns point to the West.

Wane, be at rest.

KANE, ALICE
1995 The Dreamer Awakes. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press.
 

This is a collection of Alice's favourite tales. It includes some for which she is well-known. It has my personal favourite, The Golden Fly.

KHOROCHE, PETER (tr.)
1989 Once the Buddha Was a Monkey: Arya Sura's Jatakamala . Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
 

Jataka tales are stories of the Buddha's pre-incarnations - the many lives he lived as many kinds of animals before being born as human. In university libraries you will find big collections of these. This is the most elegant english translation (from the Sanskrit) that I have found. These stories are filled with a gentle humour and a deep compassion.

RAMANUJAN, A.K. (ed.)
1991 Folktales from India: A Selection of Oral tales from Twenty-two Languages. New York: Pantheon Books.
 

This is one of the many titles published under The Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library. Though all the books in this series are excellent collections this one is my favourite. Both the writing and the organization of the tales is superior to most of the others. Ramanujan's scholarship is some of the best there is in the field. The tale "What Happens When You Really Listen to a Story" is both funny and deeply wise about how to live one's life.

ROBERTS, MOSS (tr. & ed.)
1979 Chinese Fairy Tales & Fantasies. New York: Pantheon Books.
 

Another of The Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library, I like the many short wisdom tales in this collection. You can see in many of the tales the origins of Taoist thought. One of my favourite tales is in this collection as, The Lost Horse. I've not seen it written down anywhere else and, though i'm not crazy about this particular version, I am glad to have a source on it. Here's my version which is a favourite of my niece, Renée:

And the Horse Came Back

Once there lived a father and son. They were poor and lived a hard life. One day their only horse ran away. Their fellow villagers lamented saying, "What will you do now? That was your only horse. How will you farm your land. You are so unlucky."

To this the poor farmer said, "We’ll see."

A few days later the farmer’s horse came back bringing with it a wild horse. And the villagers said, "Now you have two horses to work your land. You’re so lucky."

And the farmer said, "We’ll see."

The next day the farmer’s son was taming the wild horse when he was thrown from her back and broke his leg. And the villagers said, "Now who will help you work your land? That is your only son. How unlucky."

And the farmer said, "We’ll see."

A few days later the army came through town to draft all the able-bodied young men to fight in a distant war for their emperor. All the young men of the village, except for the poor farmer’s injured boy, were taken away. And as the villagers watched as their children were taken away they looked at the poor farmer and his boy and said, "You’re so lucky."

And the former said, "We’ll see."

SCHWARTZ, HOWARD
1983 Elijah's Violin & Other Jewish Folktales. Middlesex, England: Penguin Books.
1993 Gabriel's Palace: Jewish Mystical Tales. New York: Oxford University Press.
 

Howard Schwartz has collected Jewish tales from all over the world. All his books include extensive notes on sources of the tales. Elijah's Violin is one of my favourite wonder tales.

THEOPHANE THE MONK
1992 Tales of a Magic Monastery. New York: The Crossroad Publishing Company.
 

This is a lovely wee book of quirky parables. I regularly tell a few from this collection. These tales are examples of Christian tales that seem virtually indistinguishable from their Sufi, Zen and Hasidic counterparts.

YASHINSKY, DAN
1992 The Storyteller At Fault. Charlottetown, PEI: Ragweed Press.
 

This is a story-cycle that Dan wrote and performs still. It is a marvellous work of stories within stories in the tradition of the 1,000 Nights and a Night (better known as The Arabian Nights). It includes another of my all-time favourite tales: The Silent Prince.

YASHINSKY, DAN (ed.)
1990 Tales for an Unknown City: Stories from 1,001 Friday Nights of Storytelling. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press.
1994 Next Teller: A Book of Canadian Storytelling. Charlottetown, PEI: Ragweed Press.
1997 Ghostwise: A Book of Midnight Stories. Charlottetown, PEI: Ragweed Press.
 

Dan's collections are especially magical in that all the stories told are still being told by all the tellers published here (with the few exceptions of some recently departed and very beloved). Tales for an Unknown City is a collection of tales told at the 1,001 Friday Nights of Storytelling of which Dan is the principal founding member. Begun in 1978 they continue to this day, every Friday night without exception. Though this book is a wonderful sampling of the Friday Nights, it is no substitute for the real thing. You'll find it at: St. George the Martyr Church, 205 John St. (North of Queen) and it always begins at 8:30 pm. (A $3 donation is requested and you can call for info at 416-656-2445). Next Teller and the forthcoming Ghostwise include a wider sampling of Canadian telling. You will find one tale that I re-tell from my childhood, Ti-flor and the Devil in Ghostwise.


Storytelling and Teaching

This section is a combination of storytelling how-to's and books that specifically address the context of teaching.

BLAKE, GEORGE
1992 No-Self: The Zen of Storytelling. Oshawa, ON: GB Photographic.
 

$5.00, Order from: GB Photographic, 300 Park Rd. N., Oshawa, ON L1J 4M2

COLES, ROBERT
1989
The Call of Stories: Teaching and the Moral Imagination. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.
COLUM, PADRAIC
1961 Story Telling New & Old. New York: The MacMillan Co.
 

This is a simple and elegant (and short: 23 pages) reflection on storytelling as an oral art and its relationship to imagination.

HARRELL, JOHN
1983 Origins and Early Traditions of Storytelling. Kensington, CA: York House.
KIERAN, EGAN
1988 Teaching As Storytelling: An Alternative Approach to Teaching and the Curriculum. London, UK: Routledge
McLAUGHLIN, DANIEL & WILLIAM G. TIERNEY (eds.)
1993 Naming Silenced Lives: Personal Narratives and the Process of Educational Change. New York: Routledge.
MELLON, NANCY
1992 Storytelling and the Art of Imagination. Rockport, MA: Element.
PELLOWSKI, ANNE
1977 The World of Storytelling. New York: RR Bowker Co.
ROSEN, BETTY
1988 And None of It Was Nonsense: The Power of Storytelling in School. Richmond Hill, ON: Scholastic.
ROSEN, HAROLD
1985 Stories and Meanings. Sheffield, UK: National Association for the Teaching of English.
SAWYER, RUTH
1962 The Way of the Storyteller. New York: Viking.
SCHIMMEL, NANCY
1982 Just Enough to Make a Story: A Sourcebook for Storytelling (2nd Ed.). Berkeley: Sisters' Choice Press.
SHEDLOCK, MARIE. L.
1951 The Art of the Storyteller. New York: Dover Publications.
STORYTELLERS SCHOOL OF TORONTO
1984 The Art of Storytelling: A Guide for Parents, Teachers, Librarians and Other Storytellers. Toronto: The Storytellers School of Toronto.
 

Order from: The Storytellers School of Toronto, 791 St. Clair Ave. W., 2nd Floor, Toronto, ON M6C 1B7. ph: (416) 656-2445, fx: (416) 656-8510. CDN$9.00 or US$10.00.

WITHERELL, CAROL & NEL NODDINGS (eds.)
1991 Stories Lives Tell: Narrative Dialogue in Education. New York: Teachers College Press.
ZIPES, JACK
1995 Creative Storytelling: Building Community, Changing Lives. New York: Routledge.

Orality & Oral Tradition

FINNEGAN, RUTH
1992 Oral Traditions and The Verbal Arts. New York: Routledge.
ROSENBLUTH, VERA
1990 Keeping Family Stories Alive: A Creative Guide to Taping Your Family Life & Love. Vancouver: Hartley & Marks, Publishers.
VANSINA, JAN
1985 Oral Tradition as History. Madison, WI: The University of Wisconsin Press.

Myth, Anthropology and Comparative Religion

Sadly, anthropology has often been a tool used by euro-american scholars to appropriate knowledge from colonised, invaded and conquered peoples. The legacy of anthropological writing is now often a painful and complicated one. There exist texts of peoples that have long-since ceased to exist. These texts are, in too many cases, all that remains of once vibrant peoples. They are both bones and treasures. A new practice of anthropology has emerged in the past twenty years that is guided with a more critical eye and a politics of solidarity, humility and compassion. Some of these titles are examples of this.

ABU-LUGHOD, LILA
1993 Writing Women's Worlds: Bedouin Stories. Berkeley: University of California Press.
BELL, DIANE & PAT CAPLAN, WAZIR JAHAN KARIM (eds.)
1993 Gendered Fields: Women, Men & Ethnography. New York: Routledge.
CAMPBELL, JOSEPH
1949 The Hero With a Thousand Faces. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
CLIFFORD, JAMES, & GEORGE E. MARCUS (eds.)
1986 Writing Culture: The Poetics and Politics of Ethnography. Berkeley: University of California Press.
CRUICKSHANK, JULIE with ANGELA SIDNEY, KITTY SMITH & ANNIE NED
1990
Life Lived Like a Story: Life Stories of Three Yukon Elders. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.
 

This is a remarkable work that presents the life stories of three very special women. Cruickshank learned to approach autobiography differently as she was taught by her friends that myth and life can have very different boundaries from culture to culture. Angela Sidney, Kitty Smith and Annie Ned recount their family histories as well as the stories they were raised on of the world's creation and transformation, of animals and humans.

deSANTILLANA, GIORGIO & HERTHA vonDECHEND
1969 Hamlett's Mill: An Essay on Myth and the Frame of Time. Boston: Gambit Incorporated.
DONIGER O'FLAHERTY, WENDY
1988 Other Peoples' Myths: The Cave of Echoes. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
HYDE, LEWIS
1979 The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property. New York: Vintage Books.
KANE, SEAN
1994 Wisdom of the Mythtellers. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press.
MYERHOFF, BARBARA
1992 Remembered Lives: The Work of Ritual, Storytelling, and Growing Older. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
PRESTON, RICHARD
1975 Cree Narrative: Expressing the Personal Meanings of Events. Ottawa: National Museums of Canada.
RIDINGTON, ROBIN
1990 Little Bit Know Something: Stories in a Language of Anthropology. Toronto: Douglas & McIntyre.
SAMUEL, RAPHAEL & PAUL THOMPSON (eds.)
1990 The Myths We Live By. New York: Routledge.
 

This book contains papers presented at the Sixth International Oral History Conference on "Myth and History" (St. John's College, Oxford; Sept. 11-13, 1987) . As papers that address the theory of myth and oral history they are very accessible to non-experts. I especially recommend Julie Cruickshank's piece, Myth as a framework for life stories, which is an excellent preview of her book Life Lived Like a Story (see elsewhere in this bibliography).

SUSSMAN, LINDA
1995 The Speech of the Grail: A Journey Towards Speaking That Heals and Transforms. Hudson, NY: Lindisfarne Press.
 

Sussman retells Wolfram van Eschenbach's rendition of Parsifal chapter by chapter and reflects on how the story of the Grail is both a ritual of initiation into voice as well as a lesson in how to tell one's stories. It is about imagination and creativity and art and life and all those good things that make life worth living. A taste:

How to relate creatively to wildness, how to leave things intact, free, still breathing in all their beauty and mystery, while simultaneously building an understanding of them, is a definitive late twentieth-century concern in fields as diverse as science, ecology, archetypal psychology, poetry and literary criticism - and the question concerns the initiate-speaker no less. The challenge is to claim a place for oneself, for one's imagination and intellect, in this world without having to kill the world to do it. The wildness in the world, in other people and in ourselves will, now and then, confound us, betray our expectations and ideals, challenge our need to feel in control and therefore terrify us. To maintain respectful relatedness under such conditions can only be accomplished by a courageous commitment to stay open, to keep learning, to live out of ever-changing questions rather than hardened definitions.

Improvisation is the key. The initiate-speaker emulates the jazz musician who makes no claim for any final answer or all-encompassing knowledge of the right way. Rather, holding onto a basic "line" of intention, the musician improvises out of what arises within and appears without, constantly accepting new impulses and ideas and working them into a pattern that somehow "fits," expresses some truth or coherency for that moment. Wise fools portrayed in old stories and spiritual masters have always known that the harmonies of the wild world are two intricate for ordinary consciousness to comprehend fully. These teachers point beyond modes of ordinary understanding - to presence, to play, to improvisational artistry. But they do not say this is easy. Those who embody the presence to relate playfully to wildness have undergone rigorous initiation.

WARNER, MARINA
1994 From the Beast to the Blond: On Fairytales and Their Tellers. London: Chatto & Windus.
1994 Managing Monsters: Six Myths of Our Time (The Reith Lectures). London: Vintage.
ZIPES, JACK
1994
Fairy Tale as Myth/Myth as Fairy Tale (The 1993 Thomas D. Clark Lectures). Lexington: University Press of Kentucky.

Psychology, Sociology, History

BROOKES, ANNE-LOUISE
1992 Feminist Pedagogy: An Autobiographical Approach. Halifax: Fernwood Publishing.
BRUNER, JEROME
1990 Acts of Meaning. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
ESTES, CLARISSA PINKOLA
1992 Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype. New York: Ballantine Books.
GRIFFEN, SUSAN
1992 A Chorus of Stones: The Private Life of War. New York: Anchor Books.
 

Though included in this section this book would be equally at home under autobiography. Griffen's prose is poetic, associative, provocative. Like Life Lived Like a Story listed in the previous section, this book is a unique approach to autobiography. A deeply personal refection that is simultaneously rooted in the social-political lifeworld that we share. Here are two pieces to tempt you:

I am beginning to believe that we know everything, that all history, including the history of each family, is part of us, such that, when we hear any secret revealed, a secret about a grandfather, or an uncle, or a secret about the battle of Dresden in 1945, our lives are made suddenly clearer to us, as the unnatural heaviness of unspoken truth is dispersed. For perhaps we are like stones; our own history and the history of the world embedded in us, we hold a sorrow deep within and cannot weep until that history is sung.
To tell a story, or to hear a story told, is not a simple transmission of information. Something else in the telling is given too, so that, once hearing, what one has heard becomes a part of oneself.
HILLMAN, JAMES
1996 The Soul's Code: In Search of Character and Calling. New York: Random House.
 

Hillman offers here a radical new/old notion of how to read one's life: i.e. backwards. He uses the metaphor of the acorn and the oak to suggest that we are born with an innate potential ( he uses terms like daemon, genius, guardian angel, calling). This calling can manifest in us as children, but, seeing as we are young and unprepared, our actions can get pathologized, neglected or otherwise misinterpreted. And yet if we re-examine our choices in life we can witness a recapitulation of our calling over and over again. This is a poor description on my part so i'll let Hillman speak:

Is this the appeal of biography, that it is the genre for connecting the two souls, called by biographers the life and the work, the human and the genius? Is that why we are fascinated by biographies? They expose the intricacies of the relation between the two names, and we, reading, might gain an insight into our own genius and how to live it by studying how others did so notoriously, successfully, and also seeing their pitfalls, their tragedies.

Not for heroes and models or for escapes into lives not our own, but to solve the fundamental mystery that we are each twice-born, born with a doppelgänger, and if we cannot find this estranged angel by ourselves, we turn to biography for clues. These sorts of superstitions and to us obscure practices regarding the placenta and the elf, the doppelgänger and a variety of souls and soul-names, seem to collect around a central theme: that we are not alone at the beginning. We come to the world with a magical or otherworldly counterpart that is not supposed to be around when and where we are.

But why is it so difficult to imagine that I am cared about, that something takes an interest in what I do, that I am perhaps protected, maybe even kept alive not altogether by my own will and doing? Why do I prefer insurance to the invisible guarantees of existence? For it sure is easy to die. A split second of inattention and the best-laid plans of a strong ego spill out on the sidewalk. Something saves me every day from falling down the stairs, tripping at the curb, being blindsided. How is it possible to race down the highway, tape deck singing, thoughts far away, and stay alive? What is this "immune system" that watches over my days, my food sprinkled with viruses, toxins, bacteria? Even my eyebrows crawl with mites, like little birds on a rhino's back. We name what preserves us instinct, self-preservation, sixth sense, subliminal awareness (each of which, too, is invisible yet present). Once upon a time what took such good care of me was a guardian spirit, and I damn well knew how to pay it appropriate attention.

Despite this invisible caring, we prefer to imagine ourselves thrown naked into the world, utterly vulnerable and fundamentally alone. It is easier to accept the story of heroic self-made development than the story that you may well be loved by this guiding providence, that you are needed for what you bring, and that you are sometimes fortuitously helped by it in situations of distress.

JOSSELSON, RUTHELLEN & AMIA LIEBLICH (eds.)
1993 The Narrative Study of Lives - Volume 1. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.
MUMBY, DENNIS K. (ed.)
1993 Narrative and Social Control: Critical Perspectives. London: SAGE Publications.
NASH, CHRISTOPHER (ed.)
1990 Narrative in Culture: The Uses of Storytelling in the Sciences, Philosophy and Literature. New York: Routledge.
PARRY, ALAN & ROBERT DOAN
1994 Story Re-visions: Narrative Therapy in the Postmodern World. New York: the Guildford Press.
PERSONAL NARRATIVES GROUP (eds.)
1989 Interpreting Women's Lives: Feminist Theory and Personal Narratives. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
POLKINGHORNE, DONALD E.
1988 Narrative Knowing and the Human Sciences. Albany: SUNY.
ROSENWALD, GEORGE C. & RICHARD L. OCHBERG (eds.)
1992 Storied Lives: The Cultural Politics of Self-Understanding. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
STONE, ELIZABETH
1988 Black Sheep and Kissing Cousins: How Family Stories Shape Us. New York: Penguin Books.
TATAR, MARIA
1987 The Hard Facts of the Brothers Grimm. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
1992 Off With Their Heads! Fairy Tales and the Culture of Childhood. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
WHITE, MICHAEL
1995 Re-Authoring Lives: Interviews & Essays. Adelaide, South Australia: Dulwich Centre Publications.
WHITE, MICHAEL & DAVID EPSTEIN
1990 Narrative Means to Therapeutic Ends. New York: W.W.Norton & Co.
YUNGBLUT, JOHN R.
1992 Shaping a Personal Myth to Live By. Rockport, MA: Element.

Autobiography & Literature

BIRREN, JAMES. E. & DONNA E. DEUTCHMANN
1991 Guiding Autobiography Groups for Older Adults: Exploring the Fabric of Life. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
HEILBRUN, CAROLYN G.
1988 Writing A Woman's Life. New York: Ballantine Books.
1990 Hamlet's Mother and Other Women. New York: Ballantine Books.
MARSHALL, DORIS
1987 Silver Threads: Critical Reflections on Growing Old. Toronto: Between the Lines.
MILLER, JUDITH
1991 Getting Personal: Feminist Occasions and Other Autobiographical Acts. New York: Routledge.

Miscellaneous

ARNOLD, RICK et al
1991 Educating for a Change. Toronto: Between the Lines & the Doris Marshall Institute.
CAMERON, JULIA
1992 The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. New York: GP Putnam's Sons.
GOLDBERG, NATALIE
1988 Writing Down the Bones. New York: Bantam.
1990 Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life. New York: Bantam.
KENT, CORITA & JAN STEWARD
1992 Learning By Heart: Teachings to Free the Creative Spirit. New York: Bantam Books.
LIPSETT, SUZANNE
1994 Surviving A Writer's Life. New York: HarperCollins.
METZGER, DEENA
1992 Writing for Your Life: A Guide and Companion to the Inner Worlds. New York: HarperCollins.
RICO, GABRIELE LUSSER
1983 Writing the Natural Way: Using Right-Brain Techniques to Release Your Expressive Powers. Los Angeles: J.P. Tarcher.
SCHNEIDER, PAT
1994 The Writer as an Artist: A New Approach to Writing Alone and with Others. Los Angeles: Lowell Press.
UELAND, BRENDA
1987 If You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit. Saint Paul, MN: Graywolf Press.
"Darmok" - Episode 102 of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
 

Not the place you might normally look for profound linguistic, epistemological and cross-cultural truths but this show presents a lesson in humility that is sadly lacking in all too much human communication and interaction. If you get a chance, and you have a taste for the mythical clothed as science-fiction, then I promise you it is a worthwhile 50 minutes.




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