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AFS Review: News

JAF Institutes Changes in Behind-the-Scenes Work of the Journal and Journal Format

Wednesday, October 7, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kinsey Brooke
The Editorial team of the Journal of American Folklore [JAF] is pleased to announce some recent changes in the behind-the-scenes and format of the journal.


JAF Virtual Exhibit: Please visit the Journal of American Folklore’s virtual exhibit

“Meet the Editors”: Please join editors of the JAF, Western Folklore, and the Journal of Folklore Research at the “Meet the Editors” at 12:30–2:00 on Oct. 16 for an opportunity to get to know some of the people behind the scenes and learn more about the publication process.



Over the past few months, the editorial team (editors and editorial board) has been actively reviewing the journal to determine how we can contribute to dismantling institutionalized inequities (with an emphasis on White dominance) in the field and how the journal can better meet the needs and circumstances of the AFS membership and its authors and readership.


  • Publish essays that critically engage social issues around race, gender, sexuality, ability, religion, and citizenship, especially by people representing diverse positions
  • Create increased opportunities within the journal for intellectual/professional interactions or dialog
  • Enhance opportunities to highlight the visibility and importance of public and applied folklore work


  • African American Expressive Culture and Protest, Imagination, and Dreams of Blackness
    • Special Issue Editors: Tanya Boucicaut with Lisa Gilman
    • Deadline for submissions, Nov. 2. Call for Papers.
  • Latinx Folklore: Transnational WOC Feminist Perspectives
    • Special Issue Editors: Rachel V González-Martin, Mintzi A Martínez-Rivera, and Solimar Otero


Through a series of intensive discussions and thoughtful planning, we are pleased to announce the following:

New formats and genres: We have created new sections to the journal to allow for a greater variety of forms and content intended to make the journal more accessible and engaging to diverse professionals working in a variety of positions. Please visit the JAF Contributors' webpage for more information.
    • Long Essays
    • Short essays
    • Commentaries
    • Interviews
    • Dialogs
    • Profiles
    • Engaging the Past
    • Creative Work
    • Exhibits
    • Events
    • Film and Video
    • Music and Sound
    • Electronic Media

Compensation of reviewers. JAF will begin offering a $50 gift card to Powell’s Books for reviewers of manuscripts. This is in recognition that many of our colleagues are underemployed/underpaid and deserve compensation and recognition for their work. (those in financially stable positions have the option of declining).

Board composition: We have added language to the “how to edit JAF” guidelines encouraging new editors to consider a wide of range of diversity when creating the editorial board.

Information sessions: The editorial team of JAF will conduct in-person information sessions and webinars to demystify the submission process and ensure that potential contributors have easy access to the editors.

For more information about JAF, visit

To contact JAF:

EDITORIAL TEAM, George Mason University:

Editor-in-Chief: Lisa Gilman at;

Associate EditorsBenjamin Gatling at, Debra Lattanzi Shutika at, and Lijun Zhang at

Editorial Assistant: Tanya Boucicaut at

BOOK REVIEW EDITOR: James Deutsch at, Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage


Exhibit and Events: Kelly Totten at ktotten@mun.caMemorial University of Newfoundland

Films and Videos: Emily Hilliard at hilliard@wvhumanities.orgWest Virginia Folklife Program

Music and Sound: Langston Collin Wilkins at langston@humanities.orgCenter for Washington Cultural Traditions

Electronic Media: Natalie Underberg-Goode at, University of Central Florida


Wanda G. Addison, National University
Christina Barr, Nevada Humanities
Norma E. Cantú, Trinity University
Michael Dylan Foster, University of California, Davis
Rachel V. González-Martin, University of Texas at Austin
David Todd Lawrence, University of St. Thomas
Jim Leary, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Michael Atwood Mason, Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
Dorothy Noyes, The Ohio State University
Arzu Öztürkmen, Boğaziçi University, Turkey
Stephen D. Winick, American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress
Lihui Yang, Beijing Normal University, China
Juwen Zhang, Willamette University

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