Practice theory in folklore and folklife studies

Simon Josef Bronner

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Since the 1960s, folkloristic approaches in North America and Europe have been thematised with the keywords of performance and practice, respectively. Although the orientations built around the keywords share a concern for conceptualising folklore as a type of expressive action, significant theoretical differences are apparent. Arising at a similar juncture in the twentieth century in response to social upheaval, they differ in the use of explanation or generalisation with performance often representing singularity (and emergence) of an event and practice signifying the aggregate (and precedence) of folk behaviour. An evaluation of their trajectories into the twenty-first century suggests the more expansive explanatory potential of practice theory in folklore and folklife studies, particularly if the mission of such studies is oriented toward a "mobile ethnography" of everyday life. Although sharing sociological and anthropological theories of practice advanced by Pierre Bourdieu and Anthony Giddens, folkloristic ideas of practice focus on cognitive and cultural rationales underlying repeated, variable behaviour and framed activities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23-47
Number of pages25
JournalFolklore
Volume123
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2012

Fingerprint

theory-practice
folklore
twenty-first century
ethnography
performance
everyday life
twentieth century
Practice Theory
Key Words
Folklore
event
evaluation
Signifying
Pierre Bourdieu
Anthropological Theory
Evaluation
Trajectory
Sociological Theory
Folk
Singularity

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology
  • History

Cite this

Bronner, Simon Josef. / Practice theory in folklore and folklife studies. In: Folklore. 2012 ; Vol. 123, No. 1. pp. 23-47.
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Practice theory in folklore and folklife studies. / Bronner, Simon Josef.

In: Folklore, Vol. 123, No. 1, 01.04.2012, p. 23-47.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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