2021 Annual Meeting Theme: “Natural States: Environment, Politics, and Tradition”

Annual Meeting News

The 133rd annual meeting of the American Folklore Society in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, occurs amid grave global concern for the future, and politics, of natural and cultural sustainability on our planet.

To take advantage of the first AFS meeting in a state capital in seven years and to connect folklorists to these issues and to inform public policies, this international conference will feature presentations and activities that address the intersection of the natural/cultural environment and national/state politics with concepts of tradition.

Historically, the fields of folklore, folklife, and ethnology have been tied to ideas about naturalistic or organic environments and social structures. We invite contemplation on “nature” and “tradition” as they appear within the philosophical and historical assumptions of folkloristic work, in addition to ways they are applied to the communities and genres with which folklorists and ethnologists work.

Further, we invite consideration of the states—political and environmental—in which these terms or concepts have operated for centuries and will in the future. The meeting theme is designed to explore broadly the linkage of nature and politics with the cognition, conceptualization, and practice of tradition. It is also designed to call attention to current situations in which folkloristic research is essential for policymakers, tradition-bearers and their communities, and the public.

Proposals on the meeting theme are encouraged, but not required. The call for proposals will be released early in 2021 with more specific information about how to submit a proposal.

More information will be posted as it becomes available on the 2021 Annual Meeting page.

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