Previous studies on oral culture have traditionally emphasized the contradictions between oral and literate culture, and focussed on individual countries or regions. The essays in this fascinating collection depart from these approaches in several ways. By examining not only English, but also Scottish and Welsh oral culture, they provide the first pan-British study of the subject. The authors also emphasize the ways in which oral and literate culture continued to compliment and inform each other, rather than focusing exclusively on their incompatibility, or on the 'inevitable' triumph of the written word.
Adam Fox is Lecturer in Economic and Social History at the University of Edinburgh Daniel Woolf is Professor of History and Dean of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada