Mudcat Café message #3938129 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162666   Message #3938129
Posted By: GUEST,Pseudonymous
18-Jul-18 - 01:33 PM
Thread Name: New Book: Folk Song in England
Subject: RE: New Book: Folk Song in England
Jack 18 July 1031 am: glad to hear it, but feel sure the piece is accurate about what Vargyas wrote in one context (1961), when Hungary was under the control of Soviet-loyal Kadar. The author, Daniel Barth, is or was President of the Hungarian Enthographical Society. His piece is on the relationship of history and folkloristics. He gives Vargyas credit for several developments in ethnography. Barth says that 1961 seems significant to historians as it is the time when Hungarian peasants experienced 'collectivisation'.

He seems to regard this as obliterating living folk culture, whereas for Lloyd, as a mentioned previously, the claim seems to be that communist imposed collectivisation left 'the people' free to sing folk songs. Page 20 of my edition: 'In some parts of Europe, and particularly in the folkloristically rich South-east, the general democratic trend has set a different pattern in what the Americans like to call the 'collector-informant context'. A Balkan collective-farm peasant (Lloyd's term) is no longer daunted by the man in the collar and tie … The increase of working-class self confidence offers new, more favourable conditions for discovering the full physiology of musical folklore. '


Possibly relevant to Lloyd and his maiden's insecticidal fingernails is a comment made later in the piece by Barth:


" The contributions of Lajos Vargyas to historical folkloristic were already mentioned. The most famous examples of these were his studies of ballads. His methods included not only a collection
(genuine) historical data on a national level, but he broadened his scope to encompass the whole of Europe. This comparative perspective forms the basis of the timelessness of Vargyas’s works. …. His genetic extrapolations and his hypothesis about the medieval connection between French/Valloon and Hungarian ballads have already received a number of scathing criticisms. He ventured onto even more treacherous grounds when, aligning himself with the (un)historical folkloristic attitudes discussed in the first group, he claimed to identify traces of early Magyar heroic epics in 19–20th century ballads.   

Sorry to be boring! Enough already.