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The Folklore Institute


IU's top-ranked Folklore Institute has a large and dynamic community of students, professors, visiting scholars, and a dedicated staff that keep everything running smoothly. As an international center for folklore training, we regularly sponsor conference programs and cooperative projects. The undergraduate curriculum reflects the breadth of folklore study and its links to the arts, area studies, and resources available. Students may choose an individual concentration in cross-cultural or international studies, museum studies, ethnomusicology, cultural conservation, archiving, documentation of artistic performance, or specific world areas and periods in history.

The Folklore Institute is an active center of folklore scholarship, where folklorists and scholars in related disciplines of the humanities and social sciences explore and investigate the process of individual creativity within the context of social and cultural constraints.  Whether in verbal forms such as myth, legend, folktale, proverb, joke, and riddle, or in the material objects fashioned by traditional artisans and folk artists, or in the body movement of gesture, folk dance, and ritual, human beings seek understanding and involvement through the shaping of traditional resources to fit new and challenging circumstances. The students and faculty of the Folklore Institute work together to document, describe, analyze, and interpret the interplay of creativity and tradition, whether it takes place in rural or urban, popular or elite, past or present settings.