Conference on the Future of American Folkloristics Planned for Summer 2017
By Jesse Fivecoate (Conference Chair) and Kristina Downs (Conference Vice-Chair) -- A group of folklore graduate students at Indiana University is in the early stages of planning a conference on the future of American folkloristics to be held in Bloomington in the summer of 2017. The Indiana Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology and the American Folklore Society will also co-sponsor the conference (which is a separate event from the annual IU-OSU folklore and ethnomusicology student conference). The conference is intended for folklorists at all stages of their careers, both inside and outside the academy.
The field of folklore studies in the US comprises a small but dedicated group of scholars who see a viable future for the academic study of folklore and for the application and engagement of that scholarship in the public realm. To be sure, this future may not always be clear, but folklorists do what they have been doing since the earliest days of the discipline: we continue to do good work, even as others predict the death of the field. In that light, the purpose of this conference is to nurture conversations about our field and what we can do to maintain it, both inside and outside the academy.
We’re happy to announce that Debra Lattanzi Shutika, chair of the English Department at George Mason University, will be one of our two keynote speakers.
To assist in planning, we have created a brief survey to gauge AFS member interest in attending and participating in this conference. We would appreciate it if you could take a few minutes to respond to the survey by May 4, 2016. You can find the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XJYJBS8
Jesse Fivecoate, Conference Chair
Kristina Downs, Conference Vice-Chair