Folklore is a multidisciplinary field of study concerned with the documentation and analysis of verbal, customary, musical, material, and performance traditions, primarily as they are sustained, revived, modified, invented by artists, educators, entrepreneurs, activists, communities, and states. CLFS offers courses on folkloric forms, practitioners, performances, theory, methods, and public presentation, with an emphasis on cross-cultural and interdisciplinary approaches. Graduate students interested in folklore as an area of concentration typically major in CLFS while specializing in particular languages and culture areas.

Students interested in a doctoral minor in folklore may either select an Option A Folklore minor or develop an Option B distributed minor with coursework in folklore and at least one other program. Students choosing an Option A minor select an advisor from the CLFS faculty, in consultation with the chair of the department. Students are expected to achieve a B or better in four folklore courses at the 300 level or above. One course must be selected from the following courses in theory, history, or methodology of folklore: FOLKLORE/​L I S  490, FOLKLORE 510. Three additional courses may be selected from these and other courses at the 300 level or above.

Faculty: Professors Dharwadker, Gilmore (also Landscape Architecture), Layoun, Livorni (chair, also French and Italian), Rosenblum (also Jewish Studies); Associate Professors Livanos, Statkiewicz; Assistant Professors Fielder, Grunewald, Neyrat, Wells. Affiliate Faculty: Adler (German, Nordic, and Slavic), Casid (Art History),  Garlough (also Gender and Women's Studies), Goodkin (French and Italian), Guyer (English), Kern (Asian Languages and Cultures), Longinovic (German, Nordic, and Slavic), Valentine (Linguistics); Associate Professors Kapust (Political Science);  International Affiliate Faculty: Ramalho de Sousa Santos (University of Coimbra, Portugal). See also Faculty on the department website.