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Norma E. Cantú
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Norma CantuNorma E. Cantú, the Norine R. and T. Frank Murchison Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Trinity University, worked in the Folk and Traditional Arts Program at the NEA and continues to promote public folklore programs in the community. A prolific writer, she published the award winning autobioethnography, Canícula, and her novel Cabañuelas based on fieldwork on fiestas in Spain will be out in February. Her scholarly articles and books reside in the fields of folklore, literary studies, women's studies and border studies. An indefatigable advocate for young scholars she edits book series at Palgrave and at Texas A&M Press.  


 

See a videorecording of Norma explaining why she chose to run, and what she would like to accomplish if elected as AFS President.

The Society faces numerous challenges, but two key issues urgently demand our attention: an aging membership and a discontent with the goals and actions of the Society as an instrument for social change. These challenges equally offer opportunities for the Society to serve the field of folklore studies while also responding to the demands of our times. With a career focused on folklore and with over 25 years of service to the Society in various capacities including service on the Board and on various committees, such as co-chairing the Cultural Diversity Committee, I would bring to the Presidency a holistic vision for the Society, a vision that respects and celebrates all our logros, our accomplishments, including establishing an international presence and collaborating with national organizations such as the ACLS and the MLA, but also a vision that creates new opportunities and nurtures established efforts by the Society and individual sections to create a more inclusive and welcoming space for folklorists of color, differently abled, and LGBTQ members. As we embark on vibrant and necessary initiatives—such as working with immigrants locally, or leading at the international level—we make the Society relevant to a 21st century population. Leading our Society during the time of deep division in our country poses and added challenge. How can we as folklorists with our work heal the wounds? If we are to increase our membership recruiting students and community workers, we must do the work that must be done to insure that the Society as an organic institution responds to its membership. The opportunities afforded by the current state of affairs are endless. But, despite the enormity of the task at hand, we must remain hopeful, for we have resources that can effect a lasting and significant change in our society and in the world.

 


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American Folklore SocietySister Society: SIEF
Classroom-Office Building, Indiana University, 800 East Third Street, Bloomington IN 47405 USA
812/856-2379; www.afsnet.org


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