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How Tradition Works (Hardback)

A Meme-Based Cultural Poetics of the Anglo-Saxon Tenth Century

P&S History > Medieval World > Viking & Early Medieval Europe > Viking & Early Medieval Language & Literature

Imprint: Medieval and Renaissance Texts Society
Pages: 342
ISBN: 9780866983501
Published: 31st December 2006
Casemate UK Academic

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How Tradition Works examines the ways traditions are created, constituted, modified, and recognized. Expanding and revising “memetic” theory, the book analyzes the culture of the tenth-century English Benedictine Reform. How Tradition Works shows how this flowering of culture can be traced to the reliance by Anglo-Saxon monks upon unchanging written rules, the Rule of St. Benedict and the Regularis Concordia. The book also examines the corpus of Old English wills, the Old English Rule of Chrodegang, and the “wisdom poems” of the Exeter Book. This interdisciplinary study is valuable for specialists in evolutionary theory and memetics, Anglo-Saxon studies, and scholars interested in Oral Traditional Theory. How Tradition Works provides researchers with new methodological tools as well as showing how these tools can work to untangle the intricacies of cultural change and stasis.

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