Coming Soon: The JAF Winter 2023 Issue

AFS News

The Winter issue (v. 136, no. 540) of the JAF: A Global Quarterly will be available online and will arrive in mailboxes soon. 

This issue includes two articles that provide new perspectives on women’s genres in different international contexts. Aylin Demir’s “Gender and Genre: Women’s Performance Practices in Dersim” complicates previous scholarly approaches to lament as a genre in her study of sing-saying in the everyday lives of women in Dersim, a region of Turkey where Zazaki- and Kurdish-speaking Alevis live. In “Gender and Legend in Rural Iceland in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries,” Júlíana Th. Magnúsdóttir revisits archival collections in Iceland to shed light on differences between women’s and men’s storytelling in “the old days” in Iceland.

The “’Urgencies’ in the Field: Three Perspectives” is a written version of a forum by the same title that occurred at the virtual annual meeting of the American Folklore Society in fall 2021. Thomas Grant Richardson chaired the panel and wrote the introduction to this Perspectivs piece that urges folklorists to engage with critical social, economic, political, and economic issues. Jon Kay’s contribution decries the tendency of folklorists to ignore elderhood even though they have always relied on “older adults as the keepers of traditions, leaders of communities, and tellers of stories.” He argues that folklorists are uniquely positioned to critique agist practices and to “deploy our research and methods to help communities and elders negotiate the cultural and social changes that our aging world is experiencing.” Maida Owens addresses the urgency of climate change and argues that “the planning and adaption world needs folklorists in both communities vulnerable to climate change and those receiving climate migrants.” Tim Frandy critiques what he sees as a celebration of diversity within our field and urges folklorists to participate in the concrete and proactive “decolonizing epistemological work” that Indigenous professionals and practitioners are doing.

JAF has been inviting/welcoming essays that critically engage the field’s intellectual history and the journal’s role in contributing to white supremacy in its “Engaging the Past” section. In his essay “Where Were/Are Asian American Folklorists,” Juwen Zhang revisits the history of publications by Asian American and about Asian Americans in the first decade of the journal, only to find very little. Zhang includes a lengthy excerpt of “Customs of the Chinese in America” by Stewart Culin, published in 1890. He then provocatively asks the question whether one has to be Asian American to be an Asian American folklorist. 

Nancy Groce and Steven Winick offer a tribute in honor of Mick Moloney who passed away in 2022 in the Obituary section. As always, this issue includes book,  film, and exhibit reviews.

We encourage our readers and potential authors to visit JAF’s website to learn about the types of material we publish and to consider contributing to our new and innovative formats and genres. Please contact Editor-in-Chief Lisa Gilman if you have ideas or questions at [email protected].

We sometimes make mistakes, and we are happy to correct any errors that you may come across on our site. If you find an error, please let us know using the “submit a correction” link.

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