University of California, Berkeley


The Folklore Program trains intellectual leaders in folkloristics for the twenty-first century. The program seeks to provide a deep, critical, and theoretically-informed reading of folklore scholarship from the seventeenth century through the present. Students are urged to develop a particular field of expertise in folkloristics. At the same time, graduate students are advised to develop a strong grounding in another discipline or a multidisciplinary perspective — such as race and ethnic studies, performance studies, science, rhetoric, narrative theory, ethnomusicology, materiality, women's and queer theory, or others — in order to bring new perspectives into folkloristics work.

The program is truly international in scope, seeking to challenge the Eurocentric roots of folkloristics by bringing in critiques and alternatives from outside the Euro-American orbit, particularly through study with leading folklorists from around the world who come to Berkeley each year as visiting faculty members.

Undergraduate Program

There is no undergraduate program in Folklore, but relevant courses are available in Anthropology, Art History, Italian, Music, Scandinavian, Slavic, Spanish and Portuguese, and other departments.

Graduate Programs

Folklore: MA, Designated Emphasis (DE)

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Faculty and Instructors


Charles L. Briggs, Professor. Linguistic and medical anthropology, social theory, modernity, citizenship and the state, race, and violence.

Benjamin Brinner, Professor. Indonesia, Java, Bali, Israel, musical memory, situated musical cognition, musical interaction, improvisation, gamelan, music and oral narrative.
Research Profile

Mia Fuller, Associate Professor. Anthropology, Italy, fascism, urban design, architecture, Italian colonialism.
Research Profile

Peter Glazer, Associate Professor.

Ronald Hendel, Professor. Textual criticism, Hebrew bible, ancient Near Eastern religion and mythology, Northwest Semitic linguistics.
Research Profile

Margaretta M. Lovell, Professor. Architecture, design, American art.
Research Profile

Tamara C. Roberts, Associate Professor.

Tamara Roberts, Associate Professor.

Candace Slater, Professor. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Laurie Wilkie, Professor. Anthropology, historical archaeology, oral history, material culture and ethnic identity, family and gender relations, North America, Northern California, Caribbean. Bahamas, African consumerism, creolization, multi-ethnic community.
Research Profile

Visiting Faculty

Galit Hasan-Roken, Visiting Professor.

Mary Huford, Visiting Professor.

Diarmuid O'Giollain, Visiting Professor.

Emeritus Faculty

Ronelle Alexander, Professor Emeritus. Slavic languages and literatures, Balkan Slavic dialectology, Balkan linguistics, language contact, oral tradition, Parry-Lord theory of oral composition, South Slavic epic singers, issues of language and identity.
Research Profile

Stanley H. Brandes, Professor Emeritus. Cultural anthropology, ritual and religion, food and drink, alcohol use, visual anthropology, Mediterranean Europe, Latin America, Spain, Mexico.
Research Profile

John Lindow, Professor Emeritus. Old Norse-Icelandic literature, Scandinavian folklore, Finno-Ugric folklore, Pre-Christian religion of the North, Scandinavian mythology.
Research Profile

Daniel Melia, Professor Emeritus. Rhetoric, oral literature, Celtic studies, Celtic languages (Welsh, Irish), folklore, medieval history and literature.

Bonnie Wade, Professor Emeritus.

Contact Information

Folklore Program

232 Kroeber Hall

Phone: 510-642-3406

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Graduate Program Chair

Charles Briggs, PhD (Department of Anthropology)

Graduate Student Affairs Officer

Ned Garrett

232 Kroeber Hall #3710

Phone: 510-642-3406

Graduate Advisor

Margaretta Lovell

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