Summer School 2020

The Violence of Traditions and the Traditions of Violence


The 10th Folklore Fellows’ Summer School will be hosted by the School of Humanities at the University of Eastern Finland (UEF), in Joensuu, Finland, on 17–23 August 2020. The summer school focuses on a topical and essentially important field of research in folklore study: the violence of traditions and the traditions of violence.

Violence is not a new topic in folklore studies. Just think of ethnocentric folklore, racist and sexist jokes, the brutality of many folktales, the verbal lore of street gangs, heroic narratives and commemorations of war, victim stories of domestic and other forms of abuse, honour killings and other forms of honour violence, female genital mutilations, theatrical and/or ritual blackface presentations, (often cruel) sports involving animals, cultural appropriation and neo-colonialism in general, cultural ideas concerning sexual harassment and other forms of gendered violence.

In recent years, the violence of culture and the culture of violence has become a widely studied and hotly debated issue. The organizers of the Folklore Fellows’ Summer School 2020 think that folklorists must contribute to these debates and studies, for example, by examining the heritage aspects of violent folklore and the folklore of violence.

The teachers

The Folklore Fellows’ Summer School 2020 will provide the participants with an inspirational forum for learning and critical discussion on the violence of traditions and the traditions of violence. The teachers and keynote speakers include Regina Bendix, Charles Briggs, Terry Gunnell, Valdimar Hafstein, Peter Jan Margry, Stein R. Mathisen, Sadhana Naithani and Nona Shahnazarian. In addition, a number of Finnish scholars join them in four different thematic workhops.

The application process

The participants are selected from applications, with preference for doctoral students and younger scholars in folklore studies and closely related fields. Please download the instructions how to apply here. The participation quota for the summer school is 24. The call for applications is until September 30, 2019. Participants will be selected on the basis of their application and applicants will be informed of their acceptance by November 30, 2019.

In order to participate and earn ECTS credits, the selected students are expected to write a draft article on their individual ethnographic and/or theoretical work, give an oral presentation in a workshop and write a learning diary. The students will be charged a participation fee of 600 euros, which covers tuition, meals, accommodation in twin rooms, excursions, and joint extracurricular activities in and around Joensuu, in the beautiful landscape of Northern Karelia, close to the Russian border. Please note that the site of accommodation, which is a 3-storeyed building, does not have an elevator.

Unfortunately, we are unable to reimburse travel expenses or subsidize fees, and therefore we encourage applicants to seek out other sources of funding. Folklore Fellows´ Summer School 2020 will provide a certificate of attendance for those accepted to the summer school.

Please contact us ( if you have any further questions.

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The Folklore Fellows’ Summer School 2020 operates under the auspices of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters and cooperates with the UEF Summer School and the SIEF Summer School.


Welcome to Joensuu in 2020!

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