AFS invites proposals on any focused topic that relates to folklore. Meeting participants are invited to propose pre-organized panels or individual presentations.

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

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.

In 2022, section conveners should not submit event requests for section business meetings at this time. We will reach out to sections later in the summer to arrange virtual business meetings to take place before our October 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

This year, 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. 

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, envisioning 20-minute papers, with time for a brief introduction and Q&A immediately after the presentation. 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, envisioned for prepared presentations of 10-15 minutes. 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, though 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. The organizers of virtual sessions will be responsible for managing breakout discussions, in consultation with AFS staff.
  • 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 90-minute session (or 120 minutes by request); 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. 

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. Whenever possible, assembled panels with short papers are allotted additional time for discussion of the presentations and panel as a whole.
    • Sounding Board: If you select the short paper option, you may also indicate your interest in being considered for a “Sounding Board” session, which allows extra time for audience discussion of each presentation, led by a moderator to facilitate a thoughtful response; 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 in either format; in that case, the program committee will have more flexibility in finding a good place for your paper. 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 at a stage where feedback would be most valuable, such as the start of a book project, dissertation or thesis research, or public program development. 

  • In order to make time for discussion, presentations must be limited to no more than 10 minutes. Only those who submit an individual short paper or diamond presentation will be eligible. 
  • Presenters who are assigned to Sounding Board sessions will be expected to submit their paper or substantial notes to the designated discussant by September 1.
  • The proposal form will include a box that you can tick to indicate on the proposal form that you would like to be considered for a “Sounding Board” session. 

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

To receive proper handling, 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.