Folklore | Introduction to Folklore
F101 | 5433 | Dolby
Welcome to F101. This course serves as an introduction to some of the
materials and ideas important in the study of folklore throughout the
world. Obviously we cannot cover everything, but you will encounter
some fun, exciting, profound, entertaining, moving, and always
interesting stuff—the stories, songs, beliefs, sayings, practices,
and objects often overlooked in other studies of the human face of
the world. As you complete the readings and assignments of the
course, you will gain understanding about 1) how people learn, use,
and sometimes challenge their own culture, 2) how folklore plays a
role in interactions among people, 3) how fieldwork and analysis are
used as research tools, and 4) how the process of ethnographic
research—interviewing people and analyzing their folklore—brings
personal insights into the human condition.
Format of course: 2 lectures and one discussion session per week.
Please be aware that the discussion session is a very important part
of the course. If you know you will have to miss the discussion
sessions for any reason other than illness (for which an excuse will
be required), do not enroll in this class.
Requirements: Assignments made in discussion sections; an original
field project following guidelines for this course; a midterm; and a
final exam. Please note that the midterm and final exams and the
field project are required if you expect to receive credit for the
Readings: Books assigned will include such titles as Barre Toelken’s
Dynamics of Folklore, Jan Brunvand’s Vanishing Hitchhiker (urban
legends), George Webbe Dasent’s East o’ the Sun and West o’ the Moon
(Norwegian fairytales), or Henry Glassie’s The Potter’s Art. Titles
may vary – check the book list at the bookstore.