Mudcat Café Message Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Tom Bliss Is traditional song finished? (621* d) RE: Is traditional song finished? 07 Mar 10

A clarification on this bright Sunday morning.

I make no complaint about anyone arguing for or against the 'academic,' '54,' 'original,' or 'continuing' meaning of terms like 'folk song,' 'the tradition,' 'folk singer,' 'traditional song' and so on.

There is nothing wrong with debating these definitions and the issues behind them, and in the case of the word 'traditional' it's actually very important that the legal and musicalogical issues are kept in the public consciousness.

The debate may seem tedious and cyclical to some, but there are important issues at the heart of it.

But it's important that everyone understands that the only one of these words with a 'fixed' meaning is 'Traditional,' and only because of it's quasi legal definition.

All the other words and phrases, regardless of how they may be defined in books, or in popular usage by any number of groups or sects, are - to coin a phrase - in the public domain, and may be interpreted by different people in different ways.

We all use words in the ways we have learned them, from parents, teachers, peers, books and other media.

We learn new (old) words all the time, and the meaning of these words may be different to the way they were originally defined. Language is not carved in stone. Dictionaries and academic works need to up-dated from time to time to allow for the changes that naturally take place. (Vis the change in the 54 definitions from 'folk' to 'traditional').


It is morally wrong to suggest that someone who uses a public-owned word in a slightly different way to your own preference is being deliberately obtuse, dishonest, fraudulent or whatever.

Argue for your own meaning by all means. But accept that others have a right to use words they way they have learned them, and that to them that meaning is as correct, true, honest, natural and real as your own definition.

Post to this Thread -

Back to the Main Forum Page

By clicking on the User Name, you will requery the forum for that user. You will see everything that he or she has posted with that Mudcat name.

By clicking on the Thread Name, you will be sent to the Forum on that thread as if you selected it from the main Mudcat Forum page.
   * Click on the linked number with * to view the thread split into pages (click "d" for chronologically descending).

By clicking on the Subject, you will also go to the thread as if you selected it from the original Forum page, but also go directly to that particular message.

By clicking on the Date (Posted), you will dig out every message posted that day.

Try it all, you will see.