Article published in:Ritual Language Behaviour
Edited by Marcel Bax
[Journal of Historical Pragmatics 4:2] 2003
► pp. 287–301
Goading, ritual discord and the deflection of blame
This article brings some of the discourses of contemporary frame analysis to bear on female incitement — often called goading or whetting (from hvetja ‘to whet’) — in feud structures within several well-known medieval Icelandic family sagas. Broadly speaking, female goading in saga literature is a form of dialogic exchange in which women urge men to perform particular tasks, often seemingly against their will. These tasks mainly revolve around blood-vengeance and legal action, the twin obsessions of saga literature; in neither area is it simple for saga women to participate officially or directly. The article’s approach is similar to Marcel Bax’s (2000) approach to moments of ritual discord in sixteenth-century Dutch plays in that it considers specific historical framing practices as forms of ritual language.
Published online: 06 June 2003
Cited by 2 other publications
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