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A Folklorist's Perspective on Man-Machine Relationships in a Living Museum

When beginning preliminary fieldwork for this Festival, I wondered: just what does a folklorist have in common with an historian of technology? The former's concern is with people and how small groups (whether joined by age, ethnicity, occupation, religion, region, or blood) traditionally confront and organize the world through artistic and communicative forms (names, proverbs, riddles, games, stories, and songs). The latter is chiefly fascinated by machines and by the way in which, over time, energy has been harnessed and employed through technology.

When the folklorist acknowledges the existence of mechanical artifacts, his concern is socio

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