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Author Topic: Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folklore  (Read 3262 times)


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Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folklore
« on: September 05, 2013, 08:02:21 am »

Title: Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folklore
Author(s): Andreas Johns
Publisher: Peter Lang Publishing
Publication Date: April 2004
ISBN: 0820467693
ISBN-13: 978-0820467696
Current Price and More Info from Amazon

Baba Yaga is a well-known witch from the folklore tradition of Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus. A fascinating and colorful character, she resembles witches of other traditions but is in many ways unique. Living in the forest in a hut that stands and moves on chicken legs, she travels in a mortar with a pestle and sweeps away her tracks with a broom. In some tales she tries to harm the protagonist, while in others she is helpful. This book investigates the image and ambiguity of Baba Yaga in detail and considers the meanings she has for East Slavic culture. Providing a broad survey of folktales and other sources, it is the most thorough study of Baba Yaga yet published and will be of interest to students of anthropology, comparative literature, folklore, and Slavic and East European studies.

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Re: Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folklore
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2013, 01:07:40 pm »
Quote from: RandallS;120905

Thanks, Randall!

I've just gotten started on this book, so I'll post my thoughts as I go- by chapter, maybe. Catja recommended it to me in the Baba Yaga thread in the Baltic & Slavic SIG:

Quote from: catja6;119581
The only single-volume study I can think of off the top of my head is Andreas Johns' Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folktale. I have some issues with this book:  he is waaaaaay too Freudian for my taste; he was a student of Alan Dundes, who is basically the only person who managed to do folklore and psychoanalysis (semi-)successfully, but Johns is not Dundes and isn't nearly as good at dealing with the completely contradictory approaches of those disciplines. That said, there is a metric ton of useful info in there, and I'd class it as required reading.
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