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PRELIMINARY STUDY PROPOSAL




I. Field of Study
Folklore and Mythology/ Women's Studies

Folklore/Mythology of Women in Europe and the United States


During my undergraduate study, I had the opportunity to examine historic and contemporary vampire folklore. As my knowledge of the subject developed, I became fascinated by the roll of women in this form of folklore. In particular, I was intrigued by the manner in which issues of feminine power and/or weakness were addressed. As a graduate student, I would like to take these observations and explore them within the larger confines of the study of folklore and mythology. I will specifically study the appearance of women in various art forms from the United States and several different countries in Europe. I will address themes of spirituality, gender and sexuality.


II. Preliminary Study Areas
A.  Theories of Folklore/Mythology and Women's Studies

An exploration of the major issues and approaches to the fields of folklore/mythology and women's studies.

Preliminary Bibliography

Bendix, Regina. In Search of Authenticity: The Formation of Folklore Studies. Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin Press, 1997.

Doty, William G. Mythography : The Study of Myths and Rituals. Tuscaloosa, Alabama: University of Alabama Press, 1986.

Dundes, Alan. Folklore Matters. Knoxville, Tennessee: University of Tennessee Press, 1989.

Ruth, Sheila. Ed. Issues in Feminism: An Introduction to Women's Studies. Mountain View, California: Mayfield Publishing Company, 1997.




B.  European and American Women's History

A study of women's history in the United States and several European countries. This section will serve as a foundation for future studies of folklore and mythology.

Preliminary Bibliography

Cott, Nancy F. Ed. No Small Courage: A History of Women in the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

Ankarloo, Bengt and Clark, Stuart. Eds. Witchcraft and Magic in Europe: The Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries. Fredericksburg, Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999.

Anderson, Bonnie S. and Zinsser, Judith P. A History of Their Own: Women in Europe from Prehistory to the Present. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

Boyer, Paul S. and Nissenbaum, Stephen. Salem Possessed: The Social Origins of Witchcraft. Princeton: Harvard University Press, 1976.




C.  Women in Folklore/Mythology: Europe

An in-depth look at the appearance of women in European folklore and mythology. This study will attempt to connect individual stories with specific cultural elements that helped them to become established. It will also explore themes of spirituality, sexuality, gender and the supernatural.

Preliminary Bibliography

Gimbutas, Marija and Campbell, Joseph. The Language of the Goddess. New York: Thames and Hudson, 2001.

Auerbach, Nina. Ed. Forbidden Journeys: Fairy Tales and Fantasies by Victorian Women Writers. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993.

Bitel, Lisa M. Land of Women: Tales of Sex and Gender from Early Ireland. New York: Cornell University Press, 1998.



Tater, Maria M. Ed. The Classic Fairy Tales: Texts, Criticism. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 1998.

Wilk, Stephen R. Medusa: Solving the Mystery of the Gorgon. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.



Weinbaum, Batya. Islands of Women and Amazons: Representations and Realities. Austin, Texas: University of Texas Press, 2000.

Auerbach, Nina. Woman and the Demon. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1984.




D.  Women in Folklore/Mythology: The United States

An in-depth look at the appearance of women in American folklore and mythology. This study will attempt to connect individual stories with specific cultural elements that helped them to become established. It will also explore themes of spirituality, sexuality, gender and the supernatural.

Preliminary Bibliography

Jordan, Rosan A. and Kalcik, Susan J. Eds. Women's Folklore, Women's Culture. Fredericksburg, Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1985.

Battle, Kemp P. Hearts of Fire: Great Women of American Lore and Legend. New York: Crown Publishing, 1997.

Radner, Joan N. Feminist Messages: Coding in Women's Folk Culture. Urbana, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 1993.




E.  Gender and Media

A study of the treatment of gender within different forms of media. This section will examine such art forms as film, literature and television.

Preliminary Bibliography

Grant, Barry Keith. Ed. The Dread of Difference: Gender and the Horror Film. Austin, Texas: University of Texas Press, 1996.

Winkler, Martin M. Ed. Classical Myth and Culture in Cinema. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.

Estés, Clarissa Pinkola. Women Who Run With the Wolves. New York: Ballantine Books, 1995.

Isaacs, Susan. Brave Dames and Wimpettes: What Women are Really Doing on Page and Screen. New York: Ballantine Books, 1999.




F.  Thesis:  The Female Hero: Women in Modern Folklore and Mythology

A study of the appearance of the feminine in modern folklore and mythology.

Preliminary Bibliography

Winsbro, Bonnie. Supernatural Forces: Belief, Difference, and Power in Contemporary Works by Ethnic Women. Amherst, Massachusetts: University of Massachusetts Press, 1993.

Whatley, Mariamne H. and Henken, Elissa R. Did You Hear About the Girl Who? : Contemporary Legends, Folklore and Human Sexuality. New York: New York University Press, 2001.

Bradley, Marion Zimmer. The Mists of Avalon. New York: Del Ray, 1982.

Rice, Anne. The Witching Hour. New York: Ballantine Books, 1990.

Roquelaure, A. N. The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty. New York: New American Library Trade, 1999.

Miller, Frank and Sienkiewicz, Bill. Elektra: Assassin. New York: Marvel Comics, 2000.

Wohl, David. Witchblade: Distinctions. Los Angeles: Image Comics, 2001.

Sleepy Hollow. Dir. Tim Burton. 1999. DVD. Paramount, 1999.