Folklore | Concept of Tradition in Folklore
F404 | 2424 | Johnson

Tradition is one of the key concepts in folkloristics, and yet its
meaning has, for the most part, been taken for granted by scholars in
this discipline.  Problems arise when different folklorists define
the concept differently and sometimes employ it in contradicting
ways.  The problem is further complicated when scholars in related
disciplines and the public in general employ the concept in
different and varied ways.  This seminar will attempt an in depth
study of this concept, beginning in Unit I with an attempt to
understand the place of tradition in the discipline of
folkloristics.  Unit II will consist of guest presentations from
individuals both in and out of the discipline of folkloristics
concerning their personal definitions of this concept.  Unit III will
consist of class presentations by students and in depth discussions
which goal will be to attempt an updated, a working definition of
tradition for our time.  There are three ultimate goals of the
seminar, which are: 1) to understand how folklorists and other
scholars have defined the concept through history, 2) to attempt a
working definition of the concept for the present, and 3) to begin to
understand in what perceptual ways the general public defines and
employs the concept in everyday social interaction.