Cawte, Helm and Peacock's English Ritual Drama has been one of the most influential books dealing with traditional plays to appear in recent years, if only for its extensive bibliography and geographical index. Since its publication in 1967 however, much more material has come to light, and unfortunately, this has not yet been covered by a comparable work. As a result it is now becoming increasingly difficult to discover just what material other people have located, and no doubt there has been much duplication of effort in searching through publications and collections. In addition, researchers now find they require much more detailed information than is given in English Ritual Drama. In the hope of improving this situation, we therefore propose a co-operative indexing scheme.
This scheme, which we have been developing for several years, is based on three work sheets, dealing with the following:
The initial proposal is to circulate periodically photocopies of all completed work sheets to participants in the scheme. Then, if this proves successful, the next stage would be to produce a regular publication which would also include indexes to locations, authors, collectors, characters, dates, etc. Ultimately, as the amount of material increases, we envisage using computers to speed processing and index compilation. We would also like to see a parallel collection of the indexed source material, housed in a suitably central location, and available to all participants.
[Ron Shuttleworth Collection holds typescript.]