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Pissing in the Snow and Other Ozark Folktales Paperback – November 1, 1976
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About the Author
Green is director of the American Indian Program, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institute.
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Top Customer Reviews
All regionalisms aside, I truly did enjoy this book. It starts a bit slow, but once the old-fashioned nature is understood and appreciated, the country boy jokes about bodily functions and not-so-veiled references to intercourse keep the laughs coming. Replete with colloquialisms such as "twitchet" for female sexual anatomy and "tallywhacker" for the male organ, the stories should elicit a sense of nostalgia from anyone who's heard a good campfire joke told by someone from The Great Generation.
Most of the time the stories revolve around a preacher, a traveling salesman, clever country folks tricking dumb city folks, or the ubiquitous farmer with a young naïve daughter about to be deflowered. The language used throughout is interesting to say the least, with improper verb conjugation and pronoun usage sentences like, "That's just what Bobby Ray done, too!" are not uncommon.
My favorite part of each story was the ending. Each ending is supposed to confirm the veracity of the story, but only adds doubt. It's like hearing someone end every story with, "For real!" They come across like a story from your Grandpa, creating a positive, enjoyable vibe that amplifies the innocence past. Without what would be considered vulgarity by today's standards, "Pissing in the Snow" proves there is more than one way to skin a cat when it comes to humor. There may be times when readers from the big city will dismiss this as boring or unintelligent, but I reckon if you-uns read this here collection of stories you'll think differently, because Amazon readers is smarter than that, anyhow.
But they're special dirty stories. Special because they're old, and I'm just old enough to remember hearing, occasionally, from people who were already old, the kind of stories found in this book. They're mostly of a sexual nature, but some deal with defecation or sex role or some other aspect of human life not referred to directly in the newspaper or on the radio, in those days.
They're also special because they were collected by a folklorist who practiced his trade conscientiously. Previously this sort of thing would circulate in small pamphlets, insofar as they got into print. Vance Randolph, originally a newspaperman from Kansas who married into the Ozarks had been working on Ozark folklore since the Thirties. Over time, he trained himself in all the tools available from the tradition of the Russian Afanasjev onward. These short tales (none more than a page or so) are all annotated; the original teller and date are indicated along with parallels in other folk traditions world wide.
Although Randolph truthfully says that he took a single version and transcribed it without homogenizing it with other tellers' versions, he re-tells all the tales in a uniform robust style that I have always found very readable. Quite a number of the tales were genuinely funny, and I rarely find sexual humor funny.
The book is an artifact of its time, that period in American letters when material that any competent social scientist had built up but couldn't get published suddenly became printable. It's a bit hard to evoke that atmosphere if you don't yourself remember it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm disappointed in this book. It was a waste of money. I threw it in the garbage. I thought the book would contain "folktales". Read morePublished 1 month ago by BKaye
My husband told me about this book 36 years ago, as it was one he'd owned (and lost) before we met. After all these years, I decided to find a copy, and I'm cheering that Amazon... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Esther Schindler
Very disappointed. Was looking for a collection of humorous tales of Ozark fiction that I could possibly use as openers in presentations. Read morePublished 4 months ago by David Schinkus
If you like dirty jokes from the hills, you need this book. Not for the faint of heart.Published 8 months ago by Thomas Jefferson
Randolph is a scholar of smut. I thought this book would have some folk wisdom or historical accounts. I was wrong. All of his books are full of 'dirty old men' talk. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Nancy A. Warren
purchasedv this book as my old book has seen better daysPublished 16 months ago by Cassandra Collins
I was going to use the word unusual. Colloquial is better and truthful. This material is part of Vance Randolph's collection of Americana specifically from the Ozarks. Read morePublished 19 months ago by william newmoon