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Thinking in circles [electronic resource] : an essay on ring composition / Mary Douglas.

By: Douglas, Mary, 1921-2007.
Material type: TextTextSeries: Terry lectures: Publisher: New Haven : Yale University Press, c2007Description: 1 online resource (xv, 169 p.) : ill.ISBN: 9780300134957 (electronic bk.); 0300134959 (electronic bk.); 1281734799; 9781281734792.Subject(s): Narration (Rhetoric) | Homer. Iliad | Bible. Numbers -- Criticism, interpretation, etc | Sterne, Laurence, 1713-1768. Life and opinions of Tristram Shandy, gentleman | LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES -- Rhetoric | REFERENCE -- Writing Skills | LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES -- Composition & Creative WritingGenre/Form: Electronic books.Additional physical formats: Print version:: Thinking in circles.DDC classification: 808 Online resources: EBSCOhost
Contents:
Ancient rings worldwide -- Modes and genres -- How to construct and recognize a ring -- Alternating bands : numbers -- The central place : numbers -- Modern, not-quite rings -- Tristram Shandy : testing for ring shape -- Two central places, two rings : the Iliad -- Alternating nights and days : the Iliad -- The ending : how to complete a ring -- The latch : Jakobson's conundrum.
Summary: Many famous antique texts are misunderstood and many others have been completely dismissed, all because the literary style in which they were written is unfamiliar today. So argues Mary Douglas in this controversial study of ring composition, a technique which places the meaning of a text in the middle, framed by a beginning and ending in parallel. To read a ring composition in the modern linear fashion is to misinterpret it, Douglas contends, and today's scholars must reevaluate important antique texts from around the world. Found in the Bible and in writings from as far a field as Egypt, China, Indonesia, Greece, and Russia, ring composition is too widespread to have come from a single source. Does it perhaps derive from the way the brain works? What is its function in social contexts? The author examines ring composition, its principles and functions, in a cross-cultural way. She focuses on ring composition in Homer's "Iliad", the Bible's book of "Numbers", and, for a challenging modern example, Laurence Sterne's "Tristram Shandy", developing a persuasive argument for reconstruing famous books and rereading neglected ones.
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Includes bibliographical references and index.

Ancient rings worldwide -- Modes and genres -- How to construct and recognize a ring -- Alternating bands : numbers -- The central place : numbers -- Modern, not-quite rings -- Tristram Shandy : testing for ring shape -- Two central places, two rings : the Iliad -- Alternating nights and days : the Iliad -- The ending : how to complete a ring -- The latch : Jakobson's conundrum.

Description based on print version record.

Many famous antique texts are misunderstood and many others have been completely dismissed, all because the literary style in which they were written is unfamiliar today. So argues Mary Douglas in this controversial study of ring composition, a technique which places the meaning of a text in the middle, framed by a beginning and ending in parallel. To read a ring composition in the modern linear fashion is to misinterpret it, Douglas contends, and today's scholars must reevaluate important antique texts from around the world. Found in the Bible and in writings from as far a field as Egypt, China, Indonesia, Greece, and Russia, ring composition is too widespread to have come from a single source. Does it perhaps derive from the way the brain works? What is its function in social contexts? The author examines ring composition, its principles and functions, in a cross-cultural way. She focuses on ring composition in Homer's "Iliad", the Bible's book of "Numbers", and, for a challenging modern example, Laurence Sterne's "Tristram Shandy", developing a persuasive argument for reconstruing famous books and rereading neglected ones.

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Thinking in circles by Douglas, Mary, ©2007
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