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ISSN 0128-7702

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Two Theoretical Frameworks of Folklore Studies and Two Selected Tales from the Collection of the Assamese Folktales Entitled Burhi Aair Sadhu: A Discursive Analysis

Sikha Devi Nath

Pertanika Journal of Social Science and Humanities, Volume 31, Issue 1, March 2023


Keywords: Class-struggle, ego, folktale, historical materialism, id, psychoanalytical

Published on: 17 March 2023

Within the broad spectrum of critical theories in Folklore studies, the critical tenets of Historical materialism and Psychoanalysis are of great significance. With the appropriation of Historical materialism propounded by Engels and Marx and the Freudian psychoanalytical perspectives, there emerged two novel trends in Folklore studies. Marxist folklorists argue that the folk- the creator of the folklore mostly constitutes the working class. Therefore, the body of folk literature is the symbolic representation of the class struggle itself. On the other hand, the adherents of Freudian Psychoanalysis explicate the folktales as the symbolic expression(s) of the id’s repressed forbidden wishes and desires. The present paper intends to analyze two selected tales, namely Tejimola and Panesoi, from the collection of Assamese Folktales entitled Burhi Aair Sadhu, in the light of Historical materialism and Freudian psychoanalysis, respectively. The paper examines the theme and characters of two selected tales. Further, a close reading of both tales’ symbols and metaphors would inform the conceptual underpinnings of Historical materialism and Freudian psychoanalysis. This study also analyzes the element of fantasy in the selected tales.

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ISSN 0128-7702

e-ISSN 2231-8534

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