Mudcat Café message #3872511 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162666   Message #3872511
Posted By: Brian Peters
19-Aug-17 - 05:02 AM
Thread Name: New Book: Folk Song in England
Subject: New Book: Folk Song in England
On Thursday I attended the British Library launch for the new book 'Folk Song in England', by Steve Roud and Julia Bishop, which has just been published by Faber. It runs to 764 pages, and is the nearest thing we're ever likely to get to a definitive study. I must confess I've nowhere near finished it yet, but I dipped in to several sections on the train back to Stockport, and it's certainly fascinating and well-researched, and should be of interest to a lot of people on here. In the light of some fairly familiar arguments that have just resurfaced on the current 'EFDSS' thread, I should mention that the introductory chapter, 'Is there such a thing as folk song, anyway?' includes a pretty firm endorsement of our old friend, the 1954 definition. And that comes from a scholar who has looked at all the evidence, not just taken Cecil Sharp's word for it.

I don't think the choice of title is an accident. What we have here is solid research that supersedes the romantic fantasies of Bert Lloyd - although to be fair, Bert's book does get a fair hearing. I also have to say that the 'Fakesong' school gets pretty short shrift. You should read this!