Folklore and Public Culture

Martha Bayless, Program Director
118 Prince Lucien Campbell Hall
1287 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403-1287

The Folklore and Public Culture Program is one of a few major centers of folkloristic research in the United States. With more than thirty core and participating faculty, the program provides an interdisciplinary approach to an undergraduate major and minor as well as a Master’s Degree, allowing students to create a focused course of study in their areas of interest. Participants in the Folklore and Public Culture Program use theoretical analyses, research methods, and fieldwork techniques to study the ways tradition continues to enrich human behavior throughout the world. Participants examine the historical, cultural, social, and psychological dimensions of expressive forms such as mythology, legend, folktale, music, dance, art, belief, food, ritual, and ceremony. Students will gain fresh perspectives on the ethnic, regional, occupational, gender, and other identities of individuals in specific communities.

The Folklore and Public Culture Program offers bachelor of arts, master of arts, and master of science degrees in folklore and public culture. An undergraduate minor is also available. Folklore and public culture courses cover an extensive range of interdisciplinary topics: cultural heritage, ethnicity, subcultures, popular culture, performance, gender, film, religion, public folklore, and issues of diversity and globalization. Folklore and public culture graduates work in public and private agencies as educators, archivists, editors, arts and humanities consultants, museum curators, and festival planners.


Martha J. Bayless, professor (Britain, Welsh, Old and Middle English medieval literature and culture). See English.

D. Gantt Gurley, associate professor (Scandinavian literature and folklore, Jewish literature and folklore, Old Norse literature). See German and Scandinavian.

Habib Iddrisu, assistant professor (Africa, dance, performance). See Dance.

Leah Lowthorp, assistant professor (folklore and gender, fieldwork methods and theory, social justice). See Anthropology.

Dorothee Ostmeier, professor (18th- and 20th-century literature, culture, philosophy). See German and Scandinavian.

Whitney Phillips, assistant professor  (digital cultures, media ecologies, media ethics, narrative and identity). See Journalism and Communication.

Riki H. Saltzman, instructor (public folklore, foodways, ethnicity-identity). See Anthropology.

Gordon M. Sayre, professor (early American literature, 18th-century literature, folklore). See English.

Philip W. Scher, professor (Caribbean, politics of culture, transnationalism). See Anthropology.

Daniel N. Wojcik, professor (alternative religions, subcultures, vernacular arts). See English.

Juan Eduardo Wolf, associate professor (ethnomusicology, folklore, Latin American studies). See Music.


Ina Asim, history

Mokaya Bosire, linguistics

Bob Bussel, Labor Education and Research Center

Carl R. Bybee, journalism and communication

Matthew Dennis, history

Keith Eggener, history of art and architecture

Maria Fernanda Escallón, anthropology

Kenneth I. Helphand, landscape architecture

Lamia Karim, anthropology

Patricia Lambert, planning, public policy and management

Ana Lara, anthropology

Gabriela Martinez, journalism and communication

Debra L. Merskin, journalism and communication

Julianne H. Newton, journalism and communication

Jeffrey Ostler, history

Priscilla P. Ovalle, English

Eleonora Redaelli, School of Planning, Public Policy and Management

Ben Saunders, English

Janet Wasko, journalism and communication

Stephanie Wood, College of Education

Stephen R. Wooten, global studies

Undergraduate Programs

Major - Bachelor's Degree


Graduate Programs

Major - Master's Degree