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Folk Anecdote as a Source for Reconstructing the Image of Past Times


Folkloristika 2/2 (2017): 99‒130
Аuthor: Ana Savić
Теxt: PDF
 

The paper is based on the audio recorded interviews with Miroljub Savić (b. 1952) from the village of Ribare near Kruševac (Central Serbia), conducted in 2012 and 2013. The author examines a series of anecdotes, their narrative and genre characteristics, and features of communication context. Recorded material represents a vivid testimony of the past times and mentality, so the author analyzes collected anecdotes as a valuable source for the reconstruction of the image of rural everyday life in Serbia in the 1950s and 1960s. Since anecdotes introduce mostly local characters and events, they are vital in various forms of life and communication in the village community. They often serve as a means of cohesion, as well as a tool of critique, as they show value judgments of different social groups. They use humour not only to entertain, but to suggest specific models of behavior, therefore they play an important role in maintaining social norms.
Key words: folk anecdote, Ribare (Kruševac, Central Serbia), 1950–1970, humour, oral discourse, folklore fieldwork