The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #66440   Message #4168209
Posted By: leeneia
21-Mar-23 - 05:27 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: 'Judas' (Child 23?) by John Jacob Niles
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: 'Judas' (Child 23?) by John Jacob Niles
"I'd second Malcolm and say that most folklorists do not believe that JJN ever collected a version of Child 23."

I keep telling myself to ignore this thread, but it gets under my skin, so here goes.

The trouble with statements like the one just above is that the writer assumes that no person in Niles' stomping ground could possibly be acquainted with Cambridge, could have heard of the manuscript or could have a friend who had heard of it. But actually, there are educated people in all the states - professors, pastors, doctors, lawyers - and they are cultivated people, even when they have southern accents.

Child 23 is an old work which has what it takes to get noticed, talked about and passed around by the typical undergraduate. It has shock value because of its subject, it has the ever-popular element that it's all actually a woman's fault, and it even has some almost-sex in it. I can see it getting copied out, modernized and passed around from sophomore to sophomore, yea even across the sea in a dog-eared notebook.