AFS invites proposals on any focused topic that relates to folklore. Meeting participants are invited to propose pre-organized panels or individual presentations. Proposals related to the 2023 Annual Meeting Theme “Roots, Rootlessness, and Uprooting” are also welcome.

Contact Roz Rini Larson at [email protected] to discuss alternative panel formats.

Presentation Mode (All Proposal Types)

This year AFS is offering up to two days of dedicated virtual programming, October 11-12, in addition to a four-day, in-person gathering in Portland, Oregon, November 1-4. You will have the opportunity to select between virtual or in-person presentation modes when you submit your proposal.

Special Events

AFS sections, university folklore programs, publishers, and other organizations may propose sponsored events, including professional development workshops, meetings, lectures, receptions, performances, jam sessions, and the like. Essentially, a “special event” is anything other than a paper/media/discussion panel, or any event that is to be scheduled outside of concurrent sessions.

Section conveners should submit their requests for in-person section business meetings or other section gatherings in Portland (Nov. 2-4, 2023) through this form before March 31. Please reach out to AFS staff directly at [email protected] to arrange virtual business meetings to take place before our in-person gathering.

All events require a short description (up to 100 words) for program material. The proposal form also asks for other specific information about scheduling and set up needs, which may be provided by email at a later date as needed.

Pre-organized Panels

All sessions will be scheduled in 90-minute blocks by default, but organizers can use the proposal form to request a 120-minute time slot if needed. 

Presentation Mode for Sessions

Preorganized panel chairs will have the opportunity to select between virtual or in-person presentation modes when they submit their session proposal.

Chairs may also apply to be considered for one of the limited number of hybrid slots in Portland. Given the small number of hybrid time slots, the Review Committee will be quite selective when considering applications for hybrid sessions. Preference will be given to proposals that articulate a plan for deliberately facilitating interaction between virtual and in-person participants and managing the technology to support it. If you wish to be considered for a hybrid slot, look for the tick box to indicate your interest in hybrid mode when you submit your session proposal, and fill out this form to provide more information about your plans. If your session is not accepted for hybrid, it will be considered for the mode (virtual or in- person) that you selected in your session proposal form.

By making this selection in the proposal form, you are locking in your session’s presentation mode for the conference, unless your application for hybrid mode is approved. We cannot shift sessions from one mode to another once they are scheduled.

If you are uncertain about whether or not you or any of your panelists will be able to travel to Portland, we recommend that you select virtual; you are also welcome to apply for hybrid, but selecting virtual as the primary choice ensures that all panelists will be able to present even if your session is not accepted for hybrid.

Paper Sessions

The proposal form will offer a choice between “standard” and “short papers”; choose the one that best fits the structure of your plan, and use the Notes field to communicate any details that don’t fit the proposal form. Discussants may be added in the place of a paper; include “discussant” as a paper title, and skip the abstract.

  • Standard Paper Session: The standard paper session consists of three 30-minute blocks, each with a 20-minute paper followed by 10 minutes of Q&A.
    • The proposal form requires the panel chair to submit a 500-word abstract of the session for blind review, as well as a 100-word abstract to be published in the program.
    • Each presenter must also submit their own presentation title and 100-word abstract for publication.
  • Short Paper Session: A more flexible format that supports 4-6 presenters, each with a prepared presentation of 10 minutes, followed by 5 minutes of Q&A. Panel chairs may make scheduling notes about how the panel time block should be allocated.
    • The proposal form requires the panel chair to submit a 500-word abstract of the session for blind review, as well as a 100-word abstract to be published in the program.
    • Each presenter must also submit their own presentation title and 100-word abstract for publication.

Diamond Sessions 

Preorganized panels may consist of diamond presentations, a presentation genre structured by time and images: individual diamond presentations are 7 minutes long and are organized around 21 slides that are set to advance automatically every 20 seconds. All diamond sessions will be constructed with time for an introduction of the session as a whole, 10 minutes for each diamond presentation followed by brief discussion, and the balance of the available time dedicated to discussion of the full set of presentations. The proposal form requires the panel chair to submit a 500-word abstract of the session for blind review, as well as a 100-word abstract to be published in the program. Each presenter must also submit their own presentation title and 100-word abstract for publication.

Forums

The Forum is a flexible format for creating discussion about a specific topic or problem, with extensive interaction by panelists and the audience. The panel will be scheduled as a single discussion block, but participants may structure the conversation as they see fit within that block. Panelists may prepare brief remarks (5 minutes or less), but they should not include papers or other formal presentations. Therefore, the forum proposal form does not collect abstracts for individual presentations; panels with any prepared presentations should instead use the Short Paper Session form. Forum participants will be listed alphabetically.

  • Forums require only a 500-word abstract of the session for blind review, and a 100-word abstract of the session for publication.
  • Each panelist must submit a proposal form to convey their own personal information and consent provisions.

We encourage creative use of the discussion panel block, but all forum proposals should allow for at least 15 minutes of participation by the audience. For instance:

  • Round table: Up to 8 panelists may present for 5 minutes each, then discuss the topic amongst themselves, before engaging the audience.
  • General discussion or breakout discussion: A few panelists (or even one) may facilitate a discussion that engages the audience for the entire session, with or without breakout groups.
  • Workshop: A few workshop leaders share knowledge and expertise about a particular tool, technology, technique lesson plan, or software in a short “how to” session.

Media Sessions (Film Screenings or Listening Sessions)

Media sessions feature the presentation of one or more audio or video works in a session; alternatively, a media session may include one or more media presentations combined with other presentations or discussants. Works-in-progress are welcome.

  • The proposal form will ask media session chairs to indicate how the time will be divided, specifying media playing time as well as framing presentation and discussion, including time for Q&A. The proposal form also requires the panel chair to submit a 500-word abstract of the session for blind review, as well as a 100-word abstract to be published in the program.
  • Each individual media presenter must also submit their own presentation title and 100-word abstract for publication.

Individual Proposals

The program review committee will assemble panels made up of individual presentation proposals. All individual proposals should include a 500-word abstract for blind review, and a 100-word abstract for program materials. 

Presentation Mode for Individual Proposals

When you submit an individual proposal, you will have the opportunity to select between virtual or in-person presentation mode.

By making this selection in the proposal form, you are locking in your presentation mode for the conference. We cannot shift presentations from one mode to another once they are scheduled.

If you are uncertain at this time about whether or not you will be able to travel to Portland, we recommend that you plan for a virtual presentation even if you do eventually travel to Portland for the in-person gathering.

Otherwise, if your plans to present in Portland change, you must either withdraw your presentation, or ask a co-panelist to read your paper or to play a recording of your presentation.

Paper

You may choose one of two paper formats, or leave your options open:

  • Short papers are allotted 15 minutes: 10 minutes to read the paper, followed immediately by 5 minutes for questions. Additional time at the end of the panel will be used for discussion.
    • Sounding Board: If you select the short paper option, you may also indicate your interest in being considered for a “Sounding Board” session; see below for more information.
  • Long papers are allotted 30 minutes: 20 minutes to read the paper and 10 minutes for discussion immediately after the paper.
  • Willing to present either option: You may indicate on the proposal submission form that you are willing to present a long or a short paper; in that case, the program committee will have more flexibility in finding a good place for your paper and assign you a paper length. If you choose this option, it is important that you check the preliminary program when it is released in June to see which presentation format you have been assigned. 

Diamond Presentations

The diamond is a formalized presentation genre structured by time and images: diamond presentations are seven minutes long and are organized around 21 slides that are set to advance automatically every 20 seconds. Diamond presentations will be allotted at least 10 minutes: 7 minutes for the presentation, 3 minutes for set up; additional time will be scheduled for questions for each presentation (times will vary depending on the composition of the panel). Diamond presentations are flagged in program materials.

Sounding Board Presentations

Sounding Board sessions are assembled by the Proposal Review Committee to allow extra time for audience discussion of individual presentations, led by a discussant selected by the committee. This opportunity is open to participants at all career levels and may be especially helpful for those whose projects are in the early stages when feedback would be most valuable. 

  • To make time for discussion, presentations must be limited 10 minutes. Only those who submit an individual short paper or diamond presentation will be eligible. 
  • Presenters who are assigned to Sounding Board sessions must submit their paper or substantial notes to the designated discussant by September 1.
  • Indicate your interest in being considered for a Sounding Board session by ticking the box in the individual presentation proposal form.

Due to the constraints of scheduling and the proposal pool, we may not be able to satisfy all requests for participation in Sounding Board sessions.

Individual Media Presentations

Individual presentations that consist primarily of audio or video work should be submitted as media presentations, not papers. We welcome works-in-progress. All media presentation proposals must clearly indicate the duration of the audio/video footage to be presented, and also the duration of the total presentation block, including time for Q&A.