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2:14 AM
Tell me, am I just not seeing how my edit deleted important information about this answer? literature.stackexchange.com/a/18163/11259
I don't think I removed anything of import but they claim I did
1 hour later…
3:43 AM
Okay, their general attitude in the comments is "you edited this wrong, then I made a mistake hurrying to revert it, how dare you"
Unless I'm interpreting tone wrong, like I do apparently every time I try to interact with other human beings...
bobble is grumpy that they're leaving very confusing bracketed numbers in the quote that aren't even part of the quote
@bobble There was at least one good website about ASL vocabulary, but I don't have the link.
Feel free to edit it in if you find it
part of me wants to passive-aggressively edit their answer to remove the citation marks, then add a note "removed completely useless out-of-context citation marks" so there is a visible note that an edit was made but that would not be good
bobble should stop ranting
3 hours later…
7:20 AM
@Randal'Thor I agree that "what does this illustration mean?" isn't a question, but "what does this illustration in this edition mean?" is. So you're right. I guess I was anticipating future editions that wouldn't necessarily have this cover. A description of a book that was only published in a single edition (or that exists only in a single manuscript) that describes the illustrations, etc. would be part of its textual history, but this question doesn't touch upon that.
@verbose Yep, agreed.
So I think you still haven't had a chance to look at the proposed questions that need the additional tag, but it seems @Tsundoku is okay with all the proposed changes
I guess @bobble and @PrinceNorthLæraðr haven't yet weighed in either
or @Mithical
@verbose I'm in the middle of typing a message about some of the questions :-)
oh k
I was thinking about questions about sourcing old poems, like this or this recent one which you tagged .
There's an argument for tagging those with oral-tradition and textual-history, but it relies on knowing that the answer is going to be "this was originally a folk rhyme and had various versions". I'd say that's part of an answer rather than a question, so questions like that should be tagged just poetry and quote-source. The OP may well believe that it was originally written down by someone and has a single definitive version, rather than being a sort of folk-history thing.
7:35 AM
But even if the person believes it's a single definitive version that stems from an originally printed or written source, that's still a question ....
And if it circulates orally in many different forms, that's an question ...
And that's true regardless of whether the asker's belief is correct or mistaken ....
@verbose Don't have the spoons to focus on tags now, sorry. Too many other things going on
It's about how the question is framed, and I think both those questions are framed as questions. "What is the original source?" is always a question, regardless of whether the original source turns out to be oral or written
@Mithical Ah. Hope things ease up for you soon! Hope you had a good Passover
There was this one time when my friend Kanef was telling me about the mural of a seder he had commissioned for his dining room and I listened with increasing puzzlement and finally I said, "Kanef, I knew you were Jewish but I didn't think you were observant, so it's interesting that you chose to have a seder painted on your dining room wall" and he looked at me with a raised eyebrow and said, "S-A-T-Y-R"
Stupid American accent. I don't pronounce those two words alike at all
Bwahahaha. I've made puns in the past involving those two words
7:48 AM
@verbose Hmm, but does that mean all questions should be ? So many of them are about quotes which have mutated over time.
@Randal'Thor No, I don't think "Where is this quote from?" is by definition about the history of a text. But I do think questions about the original source of an entire work (poem, nursery rhyme) is about . I guess I don't think a quote counts as a text? It's part of a text.
@verbose I generally think questions should be tagged according to what the OP thinks it's about, without adding tags that come from knowing some part of the answer. That means any OP who's sufficiently knowledgeable about our tagging system can ask a correctly tagged question without needing it to be edited. (Same principle led me to say no to adding author tags to solved ID questions.)
So if the OP doesn't know it's an oral tradition and assumes it was a written thing, IMO we can explain the textual history in an answer but not add the tag to the question.
Oh I agree. The answer to a question might go into textual history, but not necessarily? If someone says, "what is the source of the saying 'to gild the lily'" and Gareth responds with "In Shakespeare's King John, the phrase is "to gild refined gold, to paint the lily' and the variant 'gild the lily' was first recorded 150 years later in this newspaper" then that's a answer. It doesn't mean the question is .
But I thought those questions were assuming an oral tradition.
@verbose On this site, we seem to allow questions about sourcing quotes even if they're not really from what we'd call "literature" - implicitly, are we counting quotes as (small) pieces of literature by themselves, to make those questions on-topic?
@verbose I mean, the one to which I added the tag was anyway. The asker distinctly said there are many versions floating around ... and I assumed those were oral rather than written. Most things that vary widely are oral tradition, no?
@Randal'Thor I guess it's more a question of giving the question the benefit of the doubt? We don't know whether the source of the quote is a literary one or not until we know the answer.
I mean, it doesn't bother me to consider quotes on-topic but I wouldn't say that they are literature by definition
I've sort of lost the thread of the discussion. What are we trying to determine?
8:04 AM
@verbose I double-checked. Old question: doesn't mention variations, says "would be interested to know if it has any definite origins?" - but a definite origin would probably preclude it being an oral tradition. New question: does mention variations (so I agree textual-history applies), says "is it known who wrote it?" which may suggest it not being an oral tradition.
I think most people, who aren't particularly knowledgeable about literature or folklore or storytelling, vastly underestimate the power and ubiquity of oral traditions, and might not even think that a poem was passed down orally before being committed to writing.
have to be afk for a bit sorry (need to go do dishes) but are we asking whether that specific question has to be tagged or whether it has to have or both?
We even have an answer on Lit meta (with 5 upvotes! and 7 downvotes) saying that stories couldn't last long as oral traditions because people would forget.
@verbose Sorry, maybe there are some overlapping issues here. One is whether questions like these two about old rhymes should be tagged or not; the other is more general, about whether questions about quotes that changed over time should be tagged or not.
8:27 AM
back. My dishes are done. Unlike those of you slovenly/slatternly brats with the overflowing sinks
@Randal'Thor Ah, thanks for clarifying. Lemme think
Okay, looking at this question I'd say it needs [textual-history] but you're right, there's a good case it doesn't need because the asker doesn't give any indication that the source might be oral.
wrt this one again, I'd say it needs . I'd argue it needs because the question does say it might not have definite origins. And I think doesn't belong with this question. It's about the history of one particular text, not about some literary trend or movement or trope down the ages.
wrt to [quote-source] questions, I think it would depend on the question. If the question is "I have seen several versions of this quote, where does it come from originally and how did it change?" it's a question too. If it simply says, "what is the origin of this quote?" it's not.
What do you think?
I'd say this question, which I asked and tagged myself, also needs removed and replaced with
In fact Imma write up another list now about that tag and replacements with
Does this question need ? It currently has that tag. Does it need ? It currently doesn't have that tag.
8:45 AM
@verbose :-D that meta is going to have the longest thread of answers ever. is a bigger tag than any of the others we've looked at so far, and then there's too.
Does this question by @Tsundoku need , which it currently has? Looking at the tag wiki, I don't see how it fits.
So we agree on tagging for the new poem-history question. For the old one, I agree it doesn't need history-of-literature, but still don't agree on textual-history or oral-tradition, because the question doesn't mention either different versions or that it originated orally (only implicitly suggests a possibility that it might not have definite origins).
@verbose OK, agreed. The former case is where textual-history is mentioned in the question, even if it might also appear in answers in the latter case.
@verbose agreed
@verbose agreed, should be replaced by
@Randal'Thor done
@verbose Hmm, I guess the question is about historical facts related to literature? Bit of an odd case really.
@Randal'Thor yes, but that would be , which doesn't quite fit either
9:01 AM
I think history-of-lit is closer. It's not about the context in history of a piece of literature, but it's about the history of literary figures.
Maybe neither tag fits though, as you say.
Let's see what Tsundoku says.
@Randal'Thor I think your ten-foot willy needs an tag as well.
I'm not sure this question of @Tsundoku's needs either. Could make a case for though it's not about a specific text
@verbose ROFL. That was not a message I expected to see in my inbox.
But yes, agreed.
I think I've done all the necessary retagging for questions, that tag is ready to be merged into . Not sure if I should do it now or wait in case more people will weigh in here or on meta.
@verbose Oh, North did:
16 hours ago, by Prince North Læraðr
I just looked at the meta post about the and I agree with Verbose's answer
9:22 AM
@Randal'Thor It didn't take very long, actually. I'm done
as for , the only one there that needs a retag to is the Thomas Grey one we were discussing, so I just changed it.
@verbose That one still needs as well, right? It's asking about the original source of a quote, even if also about how it's changed since its original version.
@Randal'Thor It's asking about the original source of the complete poem ... not of a quotation
so I didn't think applied
I think of as being more of a "what work is this from?" rather than "where is this work from?"
those are two different sorts of questions
the latter being
9:43 AM
Hmm, you're right. Almost all the questions are about things that are clearly excerpts taken from some unknown context of a larger piece of writing.
So if someone has a complete poem whose original source they're seeking - even something so short that it might be fewer words than a quote from a question - then it should just be tagged and ? Not any source or ID tag?
@Randal'Thor oh good, though it's about the general issue rather than about the individual answers with each suggested change
@Randal'Thor I would think so, yes. Like if it were Pound's "In a station of the metro" and the person said, "what poem are these lines from" and tagged it as "quote source" then sure, leave it as tagged, but if the question is "where did this poem first appear" and the person tags it as "quote source" I'd say change it to "textual history"
10:09 AM
And if the person quotes the entire poem and says "whom is this poem by and what is it called" that's an id request
So I guess it depends on what the asker is asking
Fair enough.
Then these traditional-rhyme questions are in a bit of a grey area between "where did this first appear" and "whom is it by and what is it called".
The older one which I answered even asks if there's a term for this type of poem, so I guess that should have a tag too.
@Randal'Thor yup
@Randal'Thor yeah I guess it really depends on the asker's framing. The answer might be about textual history or about identification or about both, but the asker might focus more on one rather than the other (and I'm guessing the asker will lean more toward identification)
I've just gone through and your answer about it. I agree with everything except Thomas McElwain as Ali Haydar - that question is about the name used by a translator/chronicler, not about changes in the text itself.
@Randal'Thor okay
Why for the Fraktur question?
10:23 AM
@Randal'Thor "Why was this book set in Fraktur when it was not the norm in that era" is about the historical circumstances of the specific text. It is very on point for the kind of things textual scholars look at. Usually it's in the context of dating an otherwise undated print volume (or a damaged one that has the date page missing). "This typeface wasn't around until 1848, so the book must have been printed after then."
So in this case the question is a specific textual history question. Okay, the asker was wrong about the text, but that is not strictly speaking relevant
Or "we know this book was printed in Italy because this sort of paper didn't make it to England from Italy until 1922"
Rather like art historians who date paintings by looking at the paints
Imma edit the tag wiki for to say "don't ask about the history of one specific text"
Ah OK. I was interpreting the question as a broad "was this common practice in publishing" rather than "why was it done for this specific book", but I suppose both are relevant.
@verbose Good call.
10:43 AM
One sad thing about the Os Lusíadas challenge was that nobody asked any question about postcolonial readings of the work. I couldn't come up with a good / specific enough question to ask though I did read some very interesting essays on the subject
11:00 AM
I think all the required manual edits for and have been done now (I didn't change the fingerprint one, as we discussed here, and the Neverending Story one will change if/when gets merged).
Then there's a half-dozen to edit for , a half-dozen for , and about a dozen for (I haven't checked your last meta answer yet, and there's overlap with some of the others).
11:14 AM
@Randal'Thor fantastic, thanks!
12:00 PM
@verbose Yeah. Books from before about 1930 often don't have a publication date, name of illustrator, or name of translator.
@verbose lol
good luck figuring out how the tagging should work.
12:15 PM
@b_jonas That's been quite the task for me and verbose these last couple of days.
12:55 PM
I am, admittedly, less interested in this. I don't see why it's so important to distinguish between and . I'd just use the latter and make oral a synonym.
or perhaps use both but not care much about how precise they are when you don't know in advance which one you want.
1:19 PM
@b_jonas can refer to a lot more than oral traditions.
Any story which has been published in different editions, or originally as a manuscript and later printed, or has had changes to its cover art, could have questions asked about it even if it never started off as an oral tradition.
You might remember this SFF question - that'd be if it were here. Or questions about how the text of Shakespeare's plays has varied through different folios and quartos and whatnot.
@verbose One more thing to take into account before merging things into is synonyms. Do we want to keep editions and publication as synonyms, so that someone typing those words into the tag box will find ? (If yes, it's as simple as me clicking a checkbox during the merge process.) Another synonym that might be useful to create is versions.
I think editions and versions would be useful as synonyms, but I'm less sure about publication: there might still be a risk of people confusing it with publishing.
@Randal'Thor Yes, I know.
3 hours later…
4:58 PM
@verbose Sorry, I haven't been on Meta or the chat lately. Catch me up on what I'm missing out on?
@PrinceNorthLæraðr He meant the recent discussion of mass retagging of questions as . I pointed out that you did mention it here, but just about the general issue rather than the long lists of retag candidates.
Ah, I see
Hm, I'm not sure I agree with oral tradition being textual history
For starters, oral literature is built on the fact that it's not comprised of a text, but word of mouth over generations, so tagging it as "textual-history" seems paradoxical at the very least, if not outright contradictory
@PrinceNorthLæraðr We had a discussion about that already, lemme link the messages and see if you're convinced ...
yesterday, by Rand al'Thor
@bobble Hmm, that raises an interesting question: the tag name presupposes the existence of a text, but asking about a story's transition from oral to written form is much the same type of question as asking about transition from manuscript to printed form.
yesterday, by verbose
@Randal'Thor I don't think "text" = "written document"; see 8a in Merriam-Webster. That's how it's typically used in literary studies.
If the question is specifically asking about the transition from oral to writing, then textual-history makes a lot of sense, but I don't think it needs to replace oral history or automatically tagged with oral-literature
Oh, definitely not replacing that tag. The only tags which we're talking about getting rid of completely in favour of textual-history are and .
(This answer lists only those questions tagged oral-tradition that would be affected by the addition of textual-history. These questions are mistagged or incompletely tagged.The other questions with the oral-tradition tag are fine.) — verbose yesterday
5:08 PM
Ah, okay. I must be misunderstanding the meta
(And yes, I wholehearted agree that textual-history would get rid of the need for publication and editions)
The meta answers about , , and don't list all the questions in those tags, just the few that may need editing with textual-history.
Hm, I could get behind textual-history in the context of asking about the historical context behind a work of oral-tradition or the transition from oral to writing
@PrinceNorthLæraðr Great! That's the part I most want to get buy-in for, because mod-merging tags isn't reversible.
What's the difference between history of literature and textual history though?
Ah, textual history asks for specific editions or publications. I see
@Randal'Thor All for it. I love tag efficiency :)
@Randal'Thor So if I were to ask about the development of Cinderella over time, that would be a question, correct?
(though the question might be closed as "too broad" :P)
5:25 PM
@PrinceNorthLæraðr History of literature is more about literature as a whole, like "what was the first story featuring this trope" or "how did this meter become standard in poetry" or "how did the Great Vowel Shift influence literature". Textual history is more about specific works, like "when was the first printed version of this book" or "why did this passage change between different editions" or "who first wrote down this story".
Ah, makes sense
@PrinceNorthLæraðr Yep.
History of literature ---> broad historical context behind certain literature stuff; textual history ---> history behind specific works of literature
(I've agreed with everything I've seen in chat/meta, by the way)
6:06 PM
So we have agreement from the tree, the crown, and the 'doku, while the Mith is too busy.
2 hours later…
8:34 PM
Q: How to prevent your work from getting stolen?

SirDancealot I have written a book recently, and I want to share it so it can be reviewed, but I am worried over that it might get stolen if I do so. So is there way, like a watermark or signature, to protect it, showing that the work belongs to me?

1 hour later…
9:46 PM
Q: What does "His business here that night might have been just as much with those two men as with his brother and sister" mean here?

Ahmed SamirIn "The Markenmore Mystery" (1922) by J. S. Fletcher, the chief constable was talking to two lawyers about Guy Markenmore who had been murdered two days ago after his meeting with two men at "Sceptre Inn"? “What puzzles me considerably,” observed the Chief Constable, “is—how did those two men wh...

10:22 PM
@Randal'Thor I agree that keeping as a synonym would be helpful and that would not. As for , I'm thinking not a synonym? Questions about versions aren't always about textual history. If there's a story that's told in one form in France and another in Namibia, that could be an question rather than a one, depending on how it's framed.
@PrinceNorthLæraðr Depends on how you ask, but yes, it seems to me it would very likely be and possibly as well.
10:43 PM
since @PrinceNorthLæraðr wears a l'lle crown on top of his avi, does that make him a bobblehead?
in The Sphinx's Lair, Oct 8 '20 at 15:29, by North Læraðr
@bobble May I add the crown to my profile picture
@bobble ah
a little later:
in The Sphinx's Lair, Oct 8 '20 at 20:47, by North Læraðr
You know, @bobble you're a great crown and all, but this is making me feel too much like a pretty princess. I HATE looking like a pretty princess
@bobble 🤨
when he re-added that's how I first got linked to here
in The Sphinx's Lair, Oct 19 '20 at 14:18, by North Læraðr
@bobble So I'm in another chatroom called "The Reading Room" (Literature SE's chatroom), and I got asked about the crown XD
10:58 PM
@bobble ah
Q: The theme of "Ode on Solitude" by Alexander Pope

user392289Here is the poem "Ode on Solitude" by Alexander Pope: Happy the man, whose wish and care    A few paternal acres bound, Content to breathe his native air,                             In his own ground. Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread,    Whose flocks supply him with attire, Whose ...

thank you for coming to my history lesson
@Bookworm in case anyone is wondering, no, I did not write out all the   manually; I used an online find-and-replace tool
@bobble ah. Can you share the link? I manually type out   a lot
unit-conversion.info/texttools/replace-text (though a search of "replace all online" will bring up others). Since they helpfully had regular spaces where the   should be, I set it to find " " (three spaces, to avoid accidentally hitting any double-spaces at the end of lines) and replace with "   "
@bobble thanks! and very clever
11:04 PM
and chat stripped my triple-space down to only a single-space. wonderful

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