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Journal of American Folklore

The Journal of American Folklore, the quarterly journal of the American Folklore Society since the Society's founding in 1888, publishes scholarly articles, essays, notes, and commentaries directed to a wide audience, as well as separate sections devoted to reviews of books, exhibitions and events, films and videotapes, sound recordings, and web sites. Its contents are not restricted to folklore in the United States; in fact, the Journal publishes materials on folklore and from folklorists anywhere in the world.

The contents of the Journal reflect a wide range of professional concerns and points of view. Articles present significant research findings and theoretical analyses from folklore and related fields. Essays are interpretive, speculative, or polemic. Notes are narrower in scope and focus on a single, often provocative, issue of definition, interpretation, or amplification. Commentaries briefly address topics raised in earlier articles.


The Society and the University of Illinois Press now maintain a JAF multimedia site that onto which authors can publish audio and visual materials to evidence and supplement their JAF-published work. We encourage authors to submit multimedia materials to supplement their text submissions. These components may include still-image files, moving-image files, sound files, and other materials that enhance published articles.


Members of the American Folklore Society receive four issues of the Journal each year as one of their member benefits. Members can also access online versions of JAF issues from 2001 through the present via Project MUSE.


The contents of the Journal from 1888 through 1987 are indexed by author, subject, and title in The Centennial Index: One Hundred Years of the Journal of American Folklore, published as JAF 101:402 in 1988. This index was extended by seven more years in the 1988-1994 Supplement to The Centennial Index, published as JAF 107:426 in 1994. PDFs of the Centennial Index and the 1988-1994 Supplement are openly available in the AFS collection in the Indiana University ScholarWorks repository.


The Journal is published for the Society by the University of Illinois Press. It is also produced with the generous assistance of the Potter College of Arts and Letters and the Department of Folk Studies and Anthropology at Western Kentucky University.


Journal of American Folklore Contact Information

The Editors of the Journal, who will serve though 2020, are Ann K. Ferrell, Editor-in-Chief; Erika Brady, Co-Editor; and Associate Editors Brent Björkman, Timothy H. Evans, Kate Parker Horigan, J. Akuma-Kalu Njoku, and Michael Ann Williams. Eleanor Hasken is the Journal's Editorial Assistant. The Co-Editor's position will rotate annually among the Associate Editors.

If you are interested in submitting a manuscript to the Journal, please read the contributors' information first, then
contact: Ann K. Ferrell, Editor-in-Chief and Erika Brady, Co-Editor, at

The Book Review Editors of the Journal are Debra Shutika, Joy Fraser, and Ben Gatling of George Mason University.

The Exhibit Review Editor of the Journal is Carrie Hertz of the Museum of International Folk Art.

The Film and Video Review Editor of the Journal is Teresa Hollingsworth of SouthArts.

The Sound Review Editor of the Journal is Jim Nelson of St. Louis Community College.

The Website Review Editor of the Journal is Ian Brodie of Cape Breton University.

The members of the Journal's Editorial Board, who assist the editors in identifying and soliciting good work, are:

Joey Brackner, Alabama State Council on the Arts
James Deutsch, Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
Valdimar Tr. Hafstein, University of Iceland
Rosemary V. Hathaway, West Virginia University
Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Museum of the History of Polish Jews
Simon Lichman, Centre for Creativity in Education and Cultural Heritage
Joseph Sciorra, John D. Calandra Italian American Institute
Amy E. Skillman, Goucher College
Margaret R. Yocom, George Mason University

Available back issues of the Journal are available to AFS members for $15 and to non-members for $25. To purchase a copy of a back issue of the Journal, please contact Cheryl Jestis of the University of Illinois Press.

To request permission to use Journal materials published from 1888 through 2002, please contact AFS Executive Director Timothy Lloyd. To request permission to use Journal materials published since 2003, please contact Angela Burton of the University of Illinois Press.

For information about, or claims related to, institutional subscriptions to the Journal, please contact Cheryl Jestis of the University of Illinois Press.

For information on advertising in the Journal, please contact Jeff McArdle of the University of Illinois Press.


Online Access to the Journal of American Folklore


The full text of issues of the Journal from Volume 114 (2001) to the present is available online through Project MUSE. AFS members receive complimentary access to the issues of the Journal available through Project MUSE as a benefit of membership.


Those with access to a university library should have access to the full text of back issues of the Journal from 1888 to the present through JSTOR. Those without such access can receive individual access to these materials for a year by paying an additional $15 at the time of their AFS membership renewal. This program also provides access to back issues of these other journals in our field: Folklore, the Journal of Folklore Research and its predecessor the Journal of the Folklore Institute, and Western Folklore and its predecessor the California Folklore Quarterly.

The JSTOR Arts and Sciences II Collection (which contains the Journal) and Project MUSE are not available at all colleges and universities, and just a handful of public libraries in the United States subscribe to these databases. However, full text from recent Journal issues is also available in thirteen other databases to which many public libraries subscribe. A few of these libraries allow cardholders to access some of these databases over the Internet as well as on site. Databases that include full-text coverage of recent Journal issues are listed below. Please note that the exact coverage years vary for each database.

OCLC First Search

Electronic Collections Online (ECO)
Wilson Select Plus
Periodical Abstracts (this database offers access to Journal issues included in ECO and Wilson Select Plus at libraries subscribing to these databases)


ProQuest Research Library


Literature Online
Literature Online Reference Edition
International Index to Music Periodicals Full Text
International Index to the Performing Arts Full Text


Questia (primarily by individual subscription)
Journal Collection


H.W. Wilson
Humanities Index/Abstracts/Full Text
OmniFile Full Text Mega
OmniFile Full Text Select
OmniFile V Full Text


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American Folklore Society
Mershon Center, The Ohio State University, 1501 Neil Avenue, Columbus OH 43201-2602 USA
614/292-4715; fax: 614/292-2199;

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