From the old writings to the new orality

The starting point is Jan Assmann’s articulation of a controversy which still generates polemics. The increased interest in the European cultural heritage, tradition and, consequently, genres of oral literature, is the outcome of the loss of immediate connection to this heritage, due to the predominance of electronic media that have imposed not only a new communication horizon of a “network society,” but also a cultural revolution. One of the central questions is the distinction between the literate and oral culture, i.e., whether we live today in the culture of “full” literacy or do there exist some preserved and changed forms of orality. Because of this it was always important for us to investigate if the transcultural concepts of orality and literacy are still relevant and how they intertwine, complement, cancel each other or “aberrate” in the environment of “digital culture,” “image culture,” “culture of the spectacle” and “decentred communication.” We will still be interested in how semiotic coding and structuring of traditional genres of oral literature interfere with functional organising and “formatting” of new forms of oral/literary communication on the Internet and other communication media, but also the structure of the “old” and appearance of the “new” forms of genres of oral literature.