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HUM 326 World Folklore

Folklore, one of the oldest forms of human expression, continues to shape contemporary culture and everyday life. This course examines the nature of folklore; the study, analysis and interpretation of folklore; various folk traditions; and real-life examples and uses of folk-lore. Selections will vary but typically represent folklore originating from regions of Africa, East Asia, Europe, the Americas, and South and Southeast Asia. All texts read in English or English translation.


4 Undergraduate credits

Effective August 15, 2023 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Analyze modern allusions to folklore in art, literature, film, archicture, and pop culture at a level consistent with the analytical and expressive complexity and sophistication that are distinctly characteristic of upper-division courses at comprehensive universities.
  • Explain selected folklore traditions including their characters, themes, settings, plots, allegorical relationships to history, and general cultural relevance
  • Identify and explain the historical and cultural contexts of selected folklore from around the world, as they emerge in the past and present
  • Identify and interpret examples of folklore applying key terms in folklore studies including but not limited to, genre (e.g. epic, joke, legend, ballads), tradition, orality, and performance.
  • Perform cross-cultural analysis of folklore to identify comparative themes, motifs, and cultural values

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 6: The Humanities and Fine Arts

  • Demonstrate awareness of the scope and variety of works in the arts and humanities.
  • Understand those works as expressions of individual and human values within a historical and social context.
  • Respond critically to works in the arts and humanities.
  • Engage in the creative process or interpretive performance.
  • Articulate an informed personal reaction to works in the arts and humanities.