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Carol Birch Bio: Carol's work is known for her compelling blend of energy, warmth, and vulnerability. Thirty years of experience have earned her a respected place in the forefront or professional storytellers: teaching at Southern Connecticut State University; lecturing at forty-one universities across the nation, as well as professional and corporate organizations. Carol has produced a number of audio-anthologies, along with writing a number of highly respected resource books on storytelling. She's been a featured storyteller six times at the National Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough, Tennessee, and she has performed throughout the world in Australia, Germany, Norway, Singapore and North America. In 1998, Carol received the National Storytelling Network's Circle of Excellence Award given to storytellers recognized by their peers as master tellers, setting standards for excellence, and demonstrating a commitment and dedication to the art.

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As the art of storytelling enters its third decade of revival and gains in artistic respectability, more than "folk" have become interested in it. In this collection by writers, anthropologists, and folklorists as well as storytellers, the editors, both educators and storytellers themselves, intend to explore "the relationship between oral cultures and print cultures." The focus, however, is a bit fuzzy. Barre Toelken, for example, currently director of the Folklore Program at Utah State University, contributes an article entitled "The Icebergs of Folktale: Misconception, Misuse, Abuse," while writer/storyteller Joseph Bruchac discusses "The Continuing Circle: Native American Storytelling Past and Present." Despite uncertainty about the purpose, the essays are well written and, while not intended to give definitive answers, may help to establish a common vocabulary about storytelling and to widen the discussion among professionals in the field. Recommended for libraries with strong education and folklore collections.‘Katherine K. Koenig, Ellis Sch., Greensburg, Pa.

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