Professionalization Resources

Professionalization Resources Image

Join the American Folklore Society (AFS):

The American Folklore Society, founded in 1888, is the professional association for folklorists. The Society produces publications, sponsors meetings, and resources to support their members’ work “to study, understand, and communicate about folklore.” Students are encouraged to join the society. The society offers a discounted membership rate to graduate students and discounted rates for attendance at the society's annual meeting.

Join the Publore Listserv:

Publore is a valuable tool and communication link for the public folklore community. Issues of concern to public folklore, requests for information or assistance, job postings, and announcements of events, exhibits, and publications are available through Publore.

To join the listserv:

Local Organizations:

The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress

“The American Folklife Center Archive, established in the Library of Congress Music Division in 1928, is now one of the largest archives of ethnographic materials from the United States and around the world, encompassing millions of items of ethnographic and historical documentation recorded from the nineteenth century to the present. These collections, which include extensive audiovisual documentation of traditional arts, cultural expressions, and oral histories, offer researchers access to the songs, stories, and other creative expressions of people from diverse communities.”

The National Endowment for the Arts

“The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent federal agency that funds, promotes, and strengthens the creative capacity of our communities by providing all Americans with diverse opportunities for arts participation.”

National Endowment for the Humanities

“The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is an independent federal agency created in 1965. It is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States. Because democracy demands wisdom, NEH serves and strengthens our republic by promoting excellence in the humanities and conveying the lessons of history to all Americans. The Endowment accomplishes this mission by awarding grants for top-rated proposals examined by panels of independent, external reviewers. NEH grants typically go to cultural institutions, such as museums, archives, libraries, colleges, universities, public television, and radio stations, and to individual scholars.”

The Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage

“The Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage is a research and educational unit of the Smithsonian Institution that produces the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, exhibitions, documentary films and videos, symposia, publications, and educational materials.”

The Virginia Folklife Program

“The Virginia Folklife Program is the state center for the documentation, presentation, support, and celebration of Virginia’s rich cultural heritage. Whether sung or told, hand-crafted or performed, Virginia’s rich folklife refers to those “arts of everyday life” that reflect a sense of traditional knowledge and connection to community. Virginia’s folkways are rich with traditions that have been rooted in the Commonwealth for centuries, as well as those that more recently have been carried here and nourished by Virginia’s diverse immigrant communities.”