Detalle Publicación

A new perspective on the Basque kopla zaharrak from the Moroccan ayyus

Título de la revista: PRAGMATICS AND COGNITION
ISSN: 0929-0907
Volumen: 27
Número: 2
Páginas: 339 - 363
Fecha de publicación: 2021
In this article I continue reading oral traditional poetry from a cognitive perspective. This time I use findings obtained empirically from my previous research on the living short improvisational poetic genre ayyu from Morocco (Gintsburg 2017, 2019a) and turn my attention to kopla zaharrak, another short oral improvisational poetic genre, which once existed in the Basque Country but is now extinct and almost forgotten. In order to better understand how this genre once functioned, I first apply to it the notions of frames, or topics or themes, and scripts, or possible scenarios manifested at least partly in form of formulaic language, which are triggered by them. The analysis reveals that on the cognitive level kopla zaharrak offer a structure similar to the ayyu, where the first two lines work as a frame and the last two lines as a script. In the second part of my research, I compare examples of kopla zaharrak and ayyus and conclude that, despite obvious cultural and linguistic differences, the way both traditions make use of images of the natural world and connect them to human situations has demonstrable similarities.