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A Karok Myth in "Measured Verse": the Translation of a Performance


The above discussion and translation is not meant to suggest that all Native American narratives must be analyzable in similar terms. I do not even wish to claim that the Zuni line (as defined by Tedlock) or the Chinookan verse (as defined by Hymes) have their exact counterparts in Karok: indeed, the definitions offered above for Karok lines and verses differ in a number of ways from the definitions given by Tedlock and by Hymes. Nevertheless, it seems clear that Karok narrative, like that of the Zuni and the Chinookan peoples, has a detailed structure which can be expressed in terms of lines and verses. If English-speaking readers are to have the chance to enjoy, in translation, the richness of Native American traditional literature, then it is the translator's duty to respect such structures.

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