Folklorist Summit: Tradition as Profession to Take Place during 2022 Folk Alliance International Conference

News from the Field

AFS and the American Folklife Center will join Folk Alliance International at their 2022 meeting to facilitate a discussion about equitable professional practice. The 2022 Folklorist Summit, titled “Tradition as Profession” will be held during this year’s Folk Alliance International Conference, May 18 – 22, 2022 in Kansas City, MO. Presented by FAI and co-hosted by AFS and the American Folklife Center, this day-long summit will bring together folklorists, artists, and industry professionals to consider pathways and barriers to practicing tradition as a profession and to being recognized as an expert in artistic and academic spaces. 

Within the academic discipline of folklore, there has been a tendency to define a “folk artist” as specifically not a professional. Furthermore, institutions that adjudicate the traditional arts frequently employ a credentialing model that fails to recognize artists as experts in their traditions and to involve them in decision-making. Questions about authenticity, equity, value, and payment continue to be points for discussion in the field of folk and traditional arts. We are in an important moment to think about these questions both within the discipline of folklore and within the FAI and AFS communities.

Panel speakers will be invited and sponsored by the hosts. Attendees will be required to register for Folk Alliance International, but offered a deep discount for conference registration (down to $100 from its regular $450 for members). Space is limited and summit registration will be cut off if necessary. If you are interested in participating in the summit, email us and we will provide you with the FAI discount code and instructions on how to register.

This project is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

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