How much do you know about folklore?



9 Questions

What is included in the study of folklore?

What is the Aarne-Thompson classification system?

What is childlore?

What is the importance of performance in folklore?

What are the four universal characteristics of cultural performance identified by Victor Turner?

What is framing in folklore performance?

What is self-correction in folklore transmission?

What is the role of the audience in folklore performance?

What is the impact of electronic communications on folklore transmission?


Folklore is a body of expressive culture shared by a particular group of people, including tales, myths, legends, proverbs, poems, jokes, and other oral traditions. Folklore also includes customary lore, taking actions for folk beliefs, and the forms and rituals of celebrations such as Christmas, weddings, folk dances, and initiation rites. Folklore is passed down informally from one individual to another, either through verbal instruction or demonstration. The academic study of folklore is called folklore studies or folkloristics, and it can be explored at undergraduate, graduate and Ph.D. levels. Folklore is not something one can typically gain in a formal school curriculum or study in the fine arts. Folklore is a naturally occurring and necessary component of any social group. Folklore does not have to be old or antiquated, it continues to be created and transmitted, and in any group it is used to differentiate between "us" and "them". Folklore began to distinguish itself as an autonomous discipline during the period of romantic nationalism, in Europe. Folklore genres include material, verbal, customary lore, and childlore. Verbal lore is words, both written and oral, that are "spoken, sung, voiced forms of traditional utterance that show repetitive patterns." Verbal folklore was the original folklore, the artifacts defined by William Thoms as older, oral cultural traditions of the rural populace. Each artifact is unique, and one of the characteristics of all folklore artifacts is their variation within genres and types. Folklore artifacts are never self-contained, they do not stand in isolation but are particulars in the self-representation of a community.Overview of Folklore Genres and Artifacts

  • Folklore is the study of traditional culture, including verbal, material, and customary lore.

  • Verbal lore includes folktales, legends, myths, proverbs, riddles, and songs.

  • The Aarne–Thompson classification system is the standard classification system for European folktales and other types of oral literature.

  • Material culture includes all tangible objects with a physical or mental presence, either intended for permanent use or to be used at the next meal.

  • Customs are the patterns of expected behavior within a group, including seasonal celebrations, life cycle celebrations, community festivals, and occupational groups.

  • Childlore is a distinct branch of folklore that deals with activities passed on by children to other children, away from the influence or supervision of an adult.

  • Folk history is a distinct sub-category of folklore concerned with the connections of folklore with history, as well as the history of folklore studies.

  • Folklore artifacts come alive as an active and meaningful component of a social group through performance.

  • Performance is frequently tied to verbal and customary lore, whereas context is used in discussions of material lore.

  • Living museums teach visitors how material artifacts were used in pre-industrial society and reenact everyday lives of people from all segments of society.

  • Handmade objects are often regarded as prestigious, where extra time and thought is spent in their creation and their uniqueness is valued.

  • Customary folklore is always a performance, be it a single gesture or a complex of scripted customs, and participating in the custom signifies acknowledgment of that social group.Understanding Folklore Performance

  • Cultural performance shares characteristics with ethnography and anthropology

  • Victor Turner identified four universal characteristics of cultural performance: playfulness, framing, the use of symbolic language, and employing the subjunctive mood

  • The audience leaves reality to enter a mode of make-believe

  • Folklore performance includes verbal lore, customs, and lore of children and games

  • Material culture requires moulding to turn it into a performance

  • Attention is no longer limited to the isolated artifact, but extended to the artifact embedded in an active cultural environment

  • Transmission is a communicative process requiring a binary: one individual or group who actively transmits information in some form to another individual or group

  • The audience of this performance is the other half in the transmission process

  • Framing is required to indicate that what is to follow is indeed performance

  • Self-correction in folklore transmission was first articulated by Walter Anderson in the 1920s

  • Folklore performance is remembered behavior

  • The advent of electronic communications is modifying the performance and transmission of folklore artifacts


Test your knowledge of folklore with this engaging quiz! From verbal lore to material culture, customs, and childlore, this quiz covers a wide range of topics related to traditional culture. Discover the different genres and artifacts of folklore, and learn about the characteristics of cultural performance and transmission. Whether you're a folklore enthusiast or simply curious about this fascinating area of study, this quiz is perfect for anyone looking to expand their knowledge and understanding of folklore. So, put your thinking cap on and get ready to explore

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