FOLK-F330: Folklore & Cultural Geography


Stephen Stuempfle
Course Description

The fields of folklore studies and cultural geography share a concern with how communities create traditional forms of expression within particular places and with how forms are transmitted across space. This course will examine processes and patterns of cultural creativity in relation to concepts of space, place, environment, landscape, and region. Our topics will include folk/vernacular architecture, rituals, festivals, toponyms (place names), myths, legends, and folksongs with case studies drawn from around the world. Through a range of readings in folklore and geography, examination of diverse visual materials, and class discussions, we will explore how different peoples conceptualize spatial order, construct material environments, inhabit and negotiate shared spaces, and represent places in verbal, visual, and musical communication. Our overall goal will be to develop competence in researching and interpreting the spatial organization of social life and cultural expression.