So, here is the last of the Asia/Pacific units that I posted. I feel SO LUCKY that this wonderful book is available at Project Gutenberg. Fansler was a real folklorist, collecting different versions of the stories, recording his sources for each one, and writing up detailed comparative notes, all of which are available at the Project Gutenberg online edition of the book. Admittedly, I don't think my students will consult those materials (unless they choose Filipino tales as a Storybook project, which would be great!!!)... but even if they are not consulting the folklore apparatus for the book, for each story they will see a source cited: Narrated by Eugenio Estayo, a Pangasinan, who heard the story from Toribio Serafica, a native of Rosales, Pangasinan. ... Narrated by Elisa Cordero, a Tagalog from Pagsanjan, La Laguna. She heard the story from her servant. ... Narrated by José Laki of Guagua, Pampanga. He got the story from his uncle, who heard it from an old Pampango storyteller. ... and so on! What a great way to remind my students with each story in this unit that stories come from PEOPLE first, and then get put into books, even though it can certainly seem the other way around. Wouldn't it be great if we knew where all the stories in all the books came from, the people who helped to make them...? Alas, one of the tendencies of the written word is to cover its tracks, erasing its connection to the world of living speech. Writing is a way to record the past, yes, but writing can also have its own kind of amnesia, forgetting where it came from!
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