Doggerel: Tools in the Toolbox

 

Colonel Brown, in formulating the Group Writing topic for this month, suggested various spurs for approaching the topic, including: “Tell us about your favorite or least favorite form of verse.” Poetic verse forms are tools. Every tool has its strengths and weaknesses. For instance, one can pound on things with a wrench, but it is better for turning nuts or bolts. One can also loosen a nut with a hammer, after a fashion, but the hammer is better as a tool to pound on things, such as nails. Poetic forms each have their uses, their strengths, and their weaknesses.

A haiku might be good for conveying an image, especially laden with a double or triple entendre or strong contrast. But it isn’t usually that good for conveying a long story. Sonnets are also great for contrasts, since a proper sonnet has a pivot or turn of thought. But being longer, it might have several images or even convey much more movement of thought and detail than a haiku could. As we look at the verse forms as tools, it is certainly possible for someone to say, “I like this one best.” But the question always lingers, “Best for what purpose?”

Petals fall
Cherry blossoms done
New seasons.¹

I walked along the old, long path
Where cherry trees all bloom
They suffered from the summer wrath
of stormy winds and gloom.

The petals shot from blooms in wind
Their useful lives complete.
They littered down from start to end,
Were trampled by my feet.

The once-pink petals smudged and torn,
The once-whole flowers burst,
The spring is old and faded, worn,
And summer brings his worst.

Spring and Summer in the Cherry Grove

The cherry tree abloom, beauty of spring.
A cheerful sight to behold after gloom
As winter fades to rosy dawns and brings
The greens and pinks replacing snow and doom.
The flowers flow in gentle, warm, fine winds
Back and forth with branches born by breezes
In hushed, gentle undulations that trend
To strengthen as the spring wanes and wheezes.
And then their time is done. The petals drop.
Blooms disappear as quickly as they came.
The joy, the heartening sight, is all but stopped
As if the summer were the cherry’s shame.
But then Spring’s promise is fulfilled anew
With hanging fruit to drive away the blues.

There we have three poems on a similar topic, cherry petals falling at the end of their season, but they have very different feels and effects. The haiku presents a very abbreviated image and thought, The reader has much that he must infer from the poem. The three stanzas in hymnal stanza paint the picture much more graphically. The English sonnet is a bit longer and allows for the presentation of more of time’s passing. And unlike most sonnets, it has not one, but two pivots.

Many think that forms with a lot of repetition can bring a comic element to the poetry. Some examples are the Triolet and the Villanelle.

Of course, if all you have is a hammer, everything starts looking like a nail. If you need to learn more about poetic forms, I have an incomplete resource easily available. Maybe some day I shall finish it up.

In the meantime, what is your favorite poetic form? Would you like to provide examples?

(The limericks start in 3…2…1)


  1. While the general way of translating a haiku into the English language is using 5-7-5 syllable lines, many poets trying to recreate the sparseness of the form in Japanese use more compact forms such as 3-5-3 or even 2-3-2.
Published in Group Writing
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 60 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Boss Mongo Member
    Boss Mongo
    @BossMongo

    Arahant: 2-3-2.

    two three

    two is just 

    stupid

    • #1
  2. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

    Arahant: 2-3-2.

    two three

    two is just

    stupid

    I don’t have access to my primary archive at the moment, but I assure you there are good ones.

    • #2
  3. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    I find mirror language poetry books (ones that have a poem in the original language on one side of a page and the translation opposite) really fun, and a great way to see how structure changes, or doesn’t, when the poem changes languages. It makes you wonder if there are any poetic, or even literary, devices that are suited only to one language, or a group of them. 

    • #3
  4. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    I find mirror language poetry books (ones that have a poem in the original language on one side of a page and the translation opposite) really fun, and a great way to see how structure changes, or doesn’t, when the poem changes languages. It makes you wonder if there are any poetic, or even literary, devices that are suited only to one language, or a group of them.

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

    Arahant: 2-3-2.

    two three

    two is just

    stupid

    I don’t have access to my primary archive at the moment, but I assure you there are good ones.

    Well, that one was good. A suggestion in the first stanza is completed in the second but leaves a new and broader tension, which is resolved in the third. A singular idea concisely expressed; its precision is guaranteed by the form regardless of its veracity.

    • #4
  5. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    I prefer iambs. The following example isn’t pentameter, and really I don’t know what you’d call it. The lines have all different numbers of syllables but I don’t care.
    …………………….

    MY ONE-EYED LOVE  by Andrew Jefferson

    I’ve fallen in love- I don’t know why
    I’ve fallen in love with a girl with one eye.

    I knew from the start. It was plain to see
    That this wonderful girl had an eye out for me

    She’s charming and witty and jolly and jocular
    Not what you’d expect from a girl who’s monocular.

    Of eyes – at the moment – she hasn’t full quota
    But that doesn’t change things for me one iota.

    It must be quite difficult if you’re bereft.
    If your left eye is gone and your right eye is left.

    But she’s made up her mind. She’s made her decision.
    She can see it quite clearly in 10/20 vision.

    She’ll not leave me waiting, not left in the lurch
    If she looks slightly sideways she’ll see me in church.

    I’ll marry my true love who’s gentle and kind.
    And thus prove to everyone that loves not quite blind.

    Source:https://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poem/my-oneeyed-love

    • #5
  6. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    I find mirror language poetry books (ones that have a poem in the original language on one side of a page and the translation opposite) really fun, and a great way to see how structure changes, or doesn’t, when the poem changes languages. It makes you wonder if there are any poetic, or even literary, devices that are suited only to one language, or a group of them.

    That is a very interesting study. Certainly some types of meter are better for a given language. Likewise, the traditional poetry of various language/culture combinations often stresses different features, poetic devices, and mnemonic devices. In Malaysia, the poetry is most about repetition, so the pantoum is all repeated lines. Another factor is what leads to my footnote about haiku. Some languages are more compact regarding syllables than others. A language like Japanese or Spanish may spit out a hundred syllables to say what we say in twenty. Another factor is if the culture has taken to copying another, more dominant, culture. For instance, the Norman influence on English poetry is a great example. There are so many factors that go into the style of poetry, and not all forms are truly emulatable in every language.

    Another wild factor is poetic complexity. Some cultures tend to be much more complex in their forms, such as the Welsh. I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    • #6
  7. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    RightAngles (View Comment):
    I prefer iambs.

    That’s not iambic. It’s a triplet rhythm, sort of like hickory dickory dock. Which is appropriate to the sort of light verse/doggerel it is.

    • #7
  8. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    That seems as if it ought to be true. It supposes enough of a unity of society for military development to be causally related to a less sophisticated intelligentia poetic class? 

    And I bet the same couldn’t be said for depth of knowledge of nature – I’d bet on that correlating positively to all realms of material ability, especially military.

    • #8
  9. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    I find mirror language poetry books (ones that have a poem in the original language on one side of a page and the translation opposite) really fun, and a great way to see how structure changes, or doesn’t, when the poem changes languages. It makes you wonder if there are any poetic, or even literary, devices that are suited only to one language, or a group of them.

    That is a very interesting study. Certainly some types of meter are better for a given language. Likewise, the traditional poetry of various language/culture combinations often stresses different features, poetic devices, and mnemonic devices. In Malaysia, the poetry is most about repetition, so the pantoum is all repeated lines. Another factor is what leads to my footnote about haiku. Some languages are more compact regarding syllables than others. A language like Japanese or Spanish may spit out a hundred syllables to say what we say in twenty. Another factor is if the culture has taken to copying another, more dominant, culture. For instance, the Norman influence on English poetry is a great example. There are so many factors that go into the style of poetry, and not all forms are truly emulatable in every language.

    Another wild factor is poetic complexity. Some cultures tend to be much more complex in their forms, such as the Welsh. I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    I remember when I was talking to my Islamic Empires prof about the Arabic class I was taking, he explained to me that Arabic had a high barrier to entry, but once you got past the first 2/3 years it was pretty easy, while Persian was the converse. And I think Persian is generally considered the superior poetic language, certainly huge swaths of Arabic language and subcontinental (mainly Mughal) poetry are based on Persian forms and motifs. Don’t know if that means anything in particular, but I thought it was interesting, especially because he said part of the reason Persian was so difficult was that it’s given to a more abstract, complex style of composition. 

    • #9
  10. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    That seems as if it ought to be true. It supposes enough of a unity of society for military development to be causally related to a less sophisticated intelligentia poetic class?

    And I bet the same couldn’t be said for depth of knowledge of nature – I’d bet on that correlating positively to all realms of material ability, especially military.

    That might fall apart with the Islamic Empires of the 14th-18th centuries. When the Ottomans were in their golden age artistically was also when they were ruled by the most powerful and military successful sultans. Ditto with the Mughals. The Safavids probably fit the pattern you mention, but they were always kind of an aberration in that region, and were limited militarily because of a relatively small population, precarious Shah, and underdeveloped economy. It would make an interesting case study, though. 

    • #10
  11. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    That seems as if it ought to be true. It supposes enough of a unity of society for military development to be causally related to a less sophisticated intelligentia poetic class?

    And I bet the same couldn’t be said for depth of knowledge of nature – I’d bet on that correlating positively to all realms of material ability, especially military.

    That might fall apart with the Islamic Empires of the 14th-18th centuries. When the Ottomans were in their golden age artistically was also when they were ruled by the most powerful and military successful sultans. Ditto with the Mughals. The Safavids probably fit the pattern you mention, but they were always kind of an aberration in that region, and were limited militarily because of a relatively small population, precarious Shah, and underdeveloped economy. It would make an interesting case study, though.

    Drat. One little historical fact shatters another beautiful theory. I suppose a modern scholar could find some statistical measure to support it.

    • #11
  12. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    That seems as if it ought to be true. It supposes enough of a unity of society for military development to be causally related to a less sophisticated intelligentia poetic class?

    And I bet the same couldn’t be said for depth of knowledge of nature – I’d bet on that correlating positively to all realms of material ability, especially military.

    Indeed, I’d love to see @bossmongo ‘s take on this idea.

    • #12
  13. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):
    Don’t know if that means anything in particular, but I thought it was interesting, especially because he said part of the reason Persian was so difficult was that it’s given to a more abstract, complex style of composition. 

    That is the sort of thing I am speaking of.

    • #13
  14. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):
    That might fall apart with the Islamic Empires of the 14th-18th centuries. When the Ottomans were in their golden age artistically was also when they were ruled by the most powerful and military successful sultans. Ditto with the Mughals. The Safavids probably fit the pattern you mention, but they were always kind of an aberration in that region, and were limited militarily because of a relatively small population, precarious Shah, and underdeveloped economy. It would make an interesting case study, though.

    Not sure if you understand what I mean by complex verse forms:

    Byr A Thoddaid

    Description: A Welsh syllabic quatrain form. It consists of two couplets, either of which can appear as the first couplet of the stanza. One couplet consists of two eight-syllable lines that rhyme with each other. The other couplet consists of one ten-syllable line and one six-syllable line. The ten-syllable line has a rhyme before the end in the seventh, eighth, or ninth syllable that rhymes

    Note: Both the Welsh and the French were so inventive with their prosody that it’s no wonder that the Anglo-Saxons came to dominate the world rather than either of these two groups.

    Schematic:

    A byr a thoddaid verse might look like:

    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxbx1
    x1xxxb

    or

    xxxxxxxbx1
    x1xxxb
    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxa

    where the 1 represents the association through assonance, alliteration, or rhyme. The “a” and “b” are the more normal rhymes.

    • #14
  15. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Barfly (View Comment):

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I at one time had a theory of poetic complexity being the inverse of military prowess for a culture.

    That seems as if it ought to be true. It supposes enough of a unity of society for military development to be causally related to a less sophisticated intelligentia poetic class?

    And I bet the same couldn’t be said for depth of knowledge of nature – I’d bet on that correlating positively to all realms of material ability, especially military.

    That might fall apart with the Islamic Empires of the 14th-18th centuries. When the Ottomans were in their golden age artistically was also when they were ruled by the most powerful and military successful sultans. Ditto with the Mughals. The Safavids probably fit the pattern you mention, but they were always kind of an aberration in that region, and were limited militarily because of a relatively small population, precarious Shah, and underdeveloped economy. It would make an interesting case study, though.

    Drat. One little historical fact shatters another beautiful theory. I suppose a modern scholar could find some statistical measure to support it.

    I’m less sure because I haven’t taken a year long class on it, but I think big poetic output in China and Japan also tended to occur both in periods of greatest cohesion (and military strength) and in periods of dissolution. The theory may hold, but more for Western powers than anyone else. Although the military revolution theory as argued by Parker occurred at a time (1500s and 1600s) with some of the most well regarded poetic output in the Western canon, often in the countries where the revolution started or found foothold.

    • #15
  16. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Barfly (View Comment):
    One little historical fact shatters another beautiful theory.

    Don’t be hasty. The Arabic and Persian forms are not very complex. The Welsh and French are much worse.

    • #16
  17. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):
    One little historical fact shatters another beautiful theory.

    Don’t be hasty. The Arabic and Persian forms are not very complex. The Welsh and French are much worse.

    It probably also depends on how one choses to rate the poetry in question. I think the poetic output of the Islamic Empires might, when we are considering the value of poetry in relation to military strength and complexity, need to be considered in its cultural context rather than in all of world poetry. Different cultural norms and aesthetics produce fundamentally different forms of expression in many cases. There’s also a pervasive religious element (poetry is an important part of Sufi mysticism and Islamic cultural more generally) that kind of promoted its production at a relatively high level of quality regardless of military circumstances, because it often wasn’t too hard for Sufi brothers or others who wrote poetry to move with caravans to find new patrons. And the more militarily successful patrons often would also be able to pay the most and help the best poets continue to produce.

    • #17
  18. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):
    That might fall apart with the Islamic Empires of the 14th-18th centuries. When the Ottomans were in their golden age artistically was also when they were ruled by the most powerful and military successful sultans. Ditto with the Mughals. The Safavids probably fit the pattern you mention, but they were always kind of an aberration in that region, and were limited militarily because of a relatively small population, precarious Shah, and underdeveloped economy. It would make an interesting case study, though.

    Not sure if you understand what I mean by complex verse forms:

    Byr A Thoddaid

    Description: A Welsh syllabic quatrain form. It consists of two couplets, either of which can appear as the first couplet of the stanza. One couplet consists of two eight-syllable lines that rhyme with each other. The other couplet consists of one ten-syllable line and one six-syllable line. The ten-syllable line has a rhyme before the end in the seventh, eighth, or ninth syllable that rhymes

    Note: Both the Welsh and the French were so inventive with their prosody that it’s no wonder that the Anglo-Saxons came to dominate the world rather than either of these two groups.

    Schematic:

    A byr a thoddaid verse might look like:

    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxbx1
    x1xxxb

    or

    xxxxxxxbx1
    x1xxxb
    xxxxxxxa
    xxxxxxxa

    where the 1 represents the association through assonance, alliteration, or rhyme. The “a” and “b” are the more normal rhymes.

         
     
         
     
         
     
         
     
         

    Ah, sorry. I see what you mean now. This is what I get for hanging out on Ricochet at 3:51 in the morning, when I can’t sleep. 

    • #18
  19. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):
    I’m less sure because I haven’t taken a year long class on it, but I think big poetic output in China and Japan also tended to occur both in periods of greatest cohesion (and military strength) and in periods of dissolution. The theory may hold, but more for Western powers than anyone else. Although the military revolution theory as argued by Parker occurred at a time (1500s and 1600s) with some of the most well regarded poetic output in the Western canon, often in the countries where the revolution started or found foothold.

    I think you’re arguing a different sort of theory. It is not about the amount of poetic output or how refined it is considered. It is a simple measure of complexity of form versus who wins the military battles.

    • #19
  20. Sisyphus (hears Xi laughing) Member
    Sisyphus (hears Xi laughing)
    @Sisyphus

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

    Arahant: 2-3-2.

    two three

    two is just

    stupid

    Consider the great Ogden Nash:

    Fleas

    Adam
    Had’em

    • #20
  21. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    The need for words to fit poetic structures ought to influence language, poets being among the language-defining sort of people. Are there linguistic artifacts of these complex poetic forms, that go beyond breath-oriented meter and simple rhymes, in modern language?

    • #21
  22. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):
    I’m less sure because I haven’t taken a year long class on it, but I think big poetic output in China and Japan also tended to occur both in periods of greatest cohesion (and military strength) and in periods of dissolution. The theory may hold, but more for Western powers than anyone else. Although the military revolution theory as argued by Parker occurred at a time (1500s and 1600s) with some of the most well regarded poetic output in the Western canon, often in the countries where the revolution started or found foothold.

    I think you’re arguing a different sort of theory. It is not about the amount of poetic output or how refined it is considered. It is a simple measure of complexity of form versus who wins the military battles.

    That is compelling. It would make a fascinating, and probably very complex, case study to take one form or subject of poetry that occurred across all cultures (funerary, etc) for a set period of years, and find the positive or negative correlation between the complexity in form that it achieved vs military success. There would probably have to be a bunch of caveats and control factors, but still it’s something that begs to be explored, even if it’s ultimately disproven. Probably worthy of a master’s thesis or a very, very long journal article. Ugh, you almost make me want to play around with that idea and data sets, but I’m not anywhere near experienced or bright enough to get anywhere far with it.

    • #22
  23. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Now, to compare against the Welsh, we look at a Persian form:

    The Ghazal has the following rules.

    1. It is made up of 5 to 15 couplets.
    2. Each couplet must be a poem unto itself.
    3. Traditionally, the first couplet should rhyme.
    4. Traditionally, the rest of the couplets should have the second line rhyming with the first couplet. There can also be a refrain with each of the rhyme words.
    5. Each line must have the same rhythm.
    6. The last couplet is often the poet’s “signature,” referring to their state of mind or some aspect of themselves in connection of the poem.

    While there are six “rules,” what it comes down to is semi-independent isorhythmic couplets with the second line of each couplet rhyming with the first line of the first. That covers four of the six requirements. It is much easier to get and understand than the special requirements for the Welsh form where the rhyme and “association” are in certain floating positions, etc.

    • #23
  24. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Barfly (View Comment):

    The need for words to fit poetic structures ought to influence language, poets being among the language-defining sort of people. Are there linguistic artifacts of these complex poetic forms, that go beyond breath-oriented meter and simple rhymes, in modern language?

    Do you know anyone who speaks Welsh or another Celtic tongue?

    • #24
  25. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    The need for words to fit poetic structures ought to influence language, poets being among the language-defining sort of people. Are there linguistic artifacts of these complex poetic forms, that go beyond breath-oriented meter and simple rhymes, in modern language?

    Do you know anyone who speaks Welsh or another Celtic tongue?

    • #25
  26. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Another thing. I have twenty-three Welsh forms catalogued. While I do not claim it is complete, I only have two Persian forms with two more variations of one. I probably have another three that are Arabic or related. As I said, probably not complete, but I suspect it is indicative.

    • #26
  27. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    @kirkianwanderer, Jimmy Carr’s best feature is his ridiculous laugh.

     

    • #27
  28. KirkianWanderer Coolidge
    KirkianWanderer
    @KirkianWanderer

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Another thing. I have twenty-three Welsh forms catalogued. While I do not claim it is complete, I only have two Persian forms with two more variations of one. I probably have another three that are Arabic or related. As I said, probably not complete, but I suspect it is indicative.

    It would be interesting to have a scholar look at the poetry that was produced by minority communities within larger Islamic empires, like the Safavid Persian one, and see if there is a greater multiplicity of poetic forms. I know that within the Ottoman Empire, for example, some Jewish communities wrote in Turkish or Arabic using Hebrew script. It doesn’t disprove your theory in any way, but it could be a useful metric for seeing how much the dominant culture bled into the literary and thus intellectual lives of religious minorities (like with the Ottoman Jews; they are holding onto their own culture in script, but adapting in actual language, so how close are forms and motifs to either traditional Hebrew poetry or Arabic/Turkish?). 

    • #28
  29. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Barfly (View Comment):

    The need for words to fit poetic structures ought to influence language, poets being among the language-defining sort of people. Are there linguistic artifacts of these complex poetic forms, that go beyond breath-oriented meter and simple rhymes, in modern language?

    Addressing this another way, poetry affects our speech in many ways. While English prosody can be complex among academic or Nineteenth Century poets, generally everything you need to know about English poetry, you learned from Doctor Seuß or on the sports page. And those are really three main things: rhyme, rhythm, and alliteration. That is the gist of English prosody.

    Now, I can list a whole passel of poetic devices, most with Greek names, that we recognize, but few are required for our prosody, for our poetic forms. So, to find what you are asking about, you have to go to the languages and cultures where they exist.

    Acephalexis Adynaton Alliteration Allusion Anachronism Anaclasis
    Anacrusis Anaphora Anthimeria Bridging Title Dunadh Enjambment
    Metaphor Simile
    • #29
  30. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KirkianWanderer (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Another thing. I have twenty-three Welsh forms catalogued. While I do not claim it is complete, I only have two Persian forms with two more variations of one. I probably have another three that are Arabic or related. As I said, probably not complete, but I suspect it is indicative.

    It would be interesting to have a scholar look at the poetry that was produced by minority communities within larger Islamic empires, like the Safavid Persian one, and see if there is a greater multiplicity of poetic forms. I know that within the Ottoman Empire, for example, some Jewish communities wrote in Turkish or Arabic using Hebrew script. It doesn’t disprove your theory in any way, but it could be a useful metric for seeing how much the dominant culture bled into the literary and thus intellectual lives of religious minorities (like with the Ottoman Jews; they are holding onto their own culture in script, but adapting in actual language, so how close are forms and motifs to either traditional Hebrew poetry or Arabic/Turkish?).

    You see, plenty for a Ph. D. right there. Maybe two or three. 😁

    • #30
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.