The Folklore Society and the Continent, 1878-1914

Workshop organized by the Lahic/Iiac, UMR 8177 (Paris), the Modern European History Research Centre (Oxford) and the Labex CAP

Intellectual Networks and the Development of the Social Sciences

 3-4th October 2013
École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Salle Lombard, 96 bd Raspail, 75006 Paris.

The aim of this two day workshop is to explore the institutional, intellectual and personal connections between members of the London Folklore Society (FLS) and scholars and cultural actors in continental Europe. Leading members of the FLS, such as Andrew Lang, James Frazer, Edward Tylor and John Rhys, nurtured the new academic subjects of anthropology and Celtic Studies in Britain, but at the same time these and other members were in contact with European colleagues. Their interchange and (sometimes heated) arguments helped shape other emerging disciplines such as sociology, archaeology, linguistics and folklore throughout Europe. For example, the network of correspondents around Prince Bonaparte, an FLS member and London resident, was formative in defining thefield of Basque Studies. And the relationship was reciprocal: the Folklore Society’s handbook, used by a whole generation of colonial anthropologists in the fi eld, drew on a French folklore model.

The Folklore Society is used here as an organising principle: we do not seek to claim it was the only or even the principle mechanism through which British and continental European intellectuals interacted. Nonetheless, it facilitated the great turn-of-the-century debate on totemism involving Tylor, Lang, Frazer, as well as Emile Durkheim, Salomon Reinach and Arnold Van Gennep. Its journal and congresses provided a forum for international debate about methods of social science investigation. ItplayedasignificantroleinthedevelopmentofthesocialsciencesbeforetheFirst World War.

This workshop is funded by the CNRS/Ministère de la Culture project BEROSE (Base d’étude et de recherchesurl’organisationdessavoirsethnographiques). BEROSEisaresourceandasearchtool for historians and others, providing dossiers on individuals and institutions (societies, journals, exhibitions…) as well as online access to many primary sources. BEROSE plans to provide a genealogy of the developing sciences of human culture across the nineteenth and thefirst half of the twentieth centuries. Some of its current provision is online at http://www.berose.fr/document/. e presentations at the workshop will form the basis of a dossier dedicated to the Folklore Society within BEROSE, and the papers themselves will be published in the online Carnets de Bérose.

Every speaker will have 25 minutes in which to present their paper, followed by 10 to 15 minutes for discussion. e rest of the allotted hour will be used to locate the subjects of the paper within the BEROSE database, and expand its relational map.



Thursday 3th october 2013

10h. David Hopkin : Introduction and round table presentation

10h30. Jean-Christophe Monferran, Fanch Postic, Claudie Voisenat : What’s Bérose ? Why are we interested in the FLS ? How do relational maps work ?

11h30. Paul Cowdell et Caroline Oates : The Folk-Lore Society, 1878-1914

14h30. Robert Ackerman : Frazer and Religion

15h30. Elinor Spalding Lewis, Black Celt, White Berber : Sir John Rhys and Anglo-French, Approaches to a European Indigineity

16h45. Frederico Delgado Rosa : The « supernatural birth » of Edwin Sydney Hartland : dead and living authorities in The Legend of Perseus

Friday 4th october 2013

9h30. David Hopkin : Thinking about Basques in Victorian Britain and Beyond

10h30. Simon Rabinovitch : A Bridge to the East: Moses Gaster as a Romanian Folklorist.

11h45. Sara Hines : Bibliothèque Bleue and The Blue Fairy Book: How France’s Fairy Tale Tradition Influenced Andrew Lang’s Fairy Book Series. Communication lue par D. Hopkin

12h15. Ollie Douglas : L’influence du Congrès International des Sciences anthropologiques de Paris (1878) sur celui de Londres (1891)


List of participants
Ackerman, Robert
: Clare Hall, University of Cambridge
Cowdell, Paul : The Folklore Society, London
Delgado Rosa, Federico : Université de Lisbonne, Portugal
Douglas, Ollie : Museum of English Rural Life, University of Reading
Hopkin, David : Hertford College, University of Oxford
Monferran, Jean-Christophe : Institut d’Anthropologie du Contemporain, CNRS/EHESS, Paris
Oates, Caroline : The Folklore Society, London
Postic, Fanch : Centre de Recherche Bretonne et Celtique, Université de Bretagne Occidentale, Brest
Rabinovitch, Simon : Department of History, Boston University, USA
Sara, Hines : Department of English, University of Edinburgh
Spalding Lewis, Elinor : Rhodes University, South Africa
Voisenat, Claudie : Institut d’Anthropologie du Contemporain, Laboratoire d’Anthropologie et d’Histoire de l’Institution de la Culture, CNRS/EHESS, Paris