Review of Hunting For Robin Hood by Seth Feldman

June 22, 2005
Filed under: Reviews 

Fantasy Audiobooks - Robin HoodHunting For Robin Hood
By Seth Feldman; with readings by Penelope Reed Doob
and Barry MacGregor
1 CD – Approx 1 Hour [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: CBC AUDIO Published: 2003
ISBN: 0660189143
Themes: / Non-Fiction / History / Mythology / Fantasy / Magic / England /

“Ballads, plays and movies tell of Robin Hood stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. But did he really exist? Seth Feldman cavorts with a merry band of scholars searching for the still elusive outlaw.”

Hunting For Robin Hood was first produced for broadcast on CBC Radio’s long running Ideas program. Ideas has been the standard-bearer for the intellectual and scholarly radio programming for decades. One would be hard pressed in Canada, or anywhere else in the English speaking world to find a consistently more enlightening program presenting scholarly lectures and documentaries in the fields of sociology, culture, arts, geopolitics, history, biography, science, technology or the humanities in a more accessible or entertaining way. If Ideas hasn’t covered it at some point, it probably doesn’t matter. With the wide commercial release of this and other CBC Audio CDs and cassettes the ephemeral radio broadcasts are preserved, marking the beginning of some of the very best audio non-fiction programs previously available only through costly direct order from the CBC. I’ve been an avid listener to Ideas since the 1980s. The program runs weeknights between 9PM and 10PM throughout most of Canada.

Hunting For Robin Hood interviews several Robin Hood scholars who trace the origins of the popular English hero. They touch on his roots in the “Green Man” mythology, something which ties Robin Hood to the fantasy realm, why he’s such a popular hero, his outlaw mystique, and even his ties to Morris dancing! Other surprising revelations include Maid Marian’s roots as a fertility goddess and the scattered origins of the rogues’ gallery of Robin Hood villains. Production values and sound quality are of course absolutely top notch, and the CD comes in an attractive DVD style Amaray case. Highly recommended to Robin Hood fans.

Posted by Jesse Willis

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