Conference Schedule



April 08-09, 2022

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, California

(All times listed in Pacific Time)

 ***REGISTER for In-Person Attendance HERE***

 ***REGISTER for Virtual Attendance HERE***

Black and white image of the WSFS logo. Bird is outlined in black on a white background, text reading "Western States Folklore Society"


Link to Download the PDF Version of the Conference Schedule

Western States Folklore Society 2022 Schedule


Social Media Tagging: #WesternFolklore2022 & #WSFS2022


VIRTUAL NAVIGATION: For virtual sessions, please use the hyperlinks to open the zoom meeting. You will be placed in a waiting room until the session starts. Attendees and presenters follow the same link (except those presenting in person). The hyperlinks will be the name and time of the session. For example, Session 1-B (8 AM-10 AM): “Magic of Popularity” This would indicate a hyperlink to follow to the zoom room.

Thursday, April 07

6:30 pm – 8:00 pm                  Evening Get-Together            Lab-Gastropub, USC Campus


Friday, April 08

7:30 am – 3:00 pm                  Registration                          SOS B52

Friday registrations and sessions are in the basement of SOS. The easiest entrance is to go down the outside staircase to the west of the building, through the sunken courtyard, and then into the rooms.


For anyone wanting to use an elevator, though, you would enter in the adjacent Waite Philips Hall, take the elevator down to the basement level, and then walk to the SOS basement rooms from there.


Friday, April 08 – In Person and Virtual Sessions

Session 1-A (8:00 AM – 10:00 AM): “The Magic of Storytelling”

Room: SOS B4; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Leah Busby

  • 8:00 John Priegnitz: Queer Voices in Deseret: The Intermountain West LGBTQ+ Oral History Project
  • 8:30 Julia McKeown: Shaking God’s Throne: Tales of transformation, disobedience, and closeness in a “Queer” Morocco
  • 9:00 Heather Joseph-Witham: Political Gnomes and Ice Cream Cones
  • 9:30 Leah Busby: Between Inside and Outside: The Poetics of Windows in a Los Angeles Neighborhood

Session 1-B (8:00 AM – 10:00 AM): “Occupational Stories”

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room SOS B45

Chair: Lisa Gabbert, Tech Moderator: Alex Ziegler

  • 8:00 Lisa Gabbert: “The Occupational Folklore of Physicians”: A Digital Collection Project.
  • 8:30 Lillian Devane: Amazon and Contemporary Occupational Culture
  • 9:00 Taylor Wyatt: American Scrimshaw: Occupational Lore, Material Culture, and the American Image
  • 9:30 Sadie Rittman: Healing in the “Anthropause”: Reclamation, Resacralization, and Anti-Vaccination in Aotearoa/New Zealand


*BREAK (10:00 AM – 10:15 AM)*


Session 2-A (10:15 AM-12:15 PM): “Meta-Truth”

Room: SOS B4; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Erik Aasland

  • 10:15 Erik Aasland: A Discourse Modes Approach to Understanding Post-Truth
  • 10:45 Robert Guyker: Another Day in the Simulation.

Session 2-B (10:15 AM-12:15 PM): “Everyday Magic”

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room SOS B45

Chair: Sabina Magliocco, Tech Moderator: TBA

  • 10:15 Iryna Stavynska: The Supernatural Folkloresque: Magic as Meaning in The Magicians
  • 10:45 Sabina Magliocco: The Sunflower Curse: Magical Responses to the Russian Invasion of Ukraine
  • 11:15 Byron Arthur Clark: Permanent Pilgrims and Everyday Magic in Avalon
  • 11:45 Justin Limoges: Three Sieves in a Trenchcoat: A Vending Diagram


*LUNCH (12:30 PM – 1:30 PM)*

WSFS Board Meeting

Room SOS B43; also streaming on Zoom


Session 3-A (1:45 PM – 3:45 PM): “Performance of Word”

Room: SOS B4; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Begoña Echeverria

  • 1:45 Jose Limon: Where, indeed, Are the Streets of Laredo?
  • 2:15 Begoña Echeverria: I am Basque woman: Hear Me Roar
  • 2:45 Wolfgang Mieder: “A Friend (not) in Need is a Friend Indeed”: Friendship in Old, New, and Anti-proverbs
  • 3:15 Raymond Summerville: “Eternal Vigilance is the Price of Liberty”: The Proverbs and Proverbial Sayings of Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Session 3-B (1:45 PM – 3:45 PM): “Asians and the Global Pandemic:  Race, Invisibility, and the Urgency of Asian American Folklore Studies

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room SOS B45

Chair: Juwen Zhang, Tech Moderator: TBA

  • Fariha Khan
  • Sojin Kim
  • Margaret Magat
  • Leigh Wynn
  • Nancy Yan
  • Juwen Zhang


Archer Taylor Memorial Lecture:


Postnational Folklore; Postnational Folk

Rethinking Communities, Identities, and Politics, in the Age of Global Communications

Prof. Tok Thompson, University of Southern California

Friday April 08: 4:00 – 5:30 PM; Doheny Library (Room DML 240) and via Zoom

In-Person Reception following the talk in the Nazarian Pavilion (ends around 6PM)


Saturday, April 09

7:30 am – 1:00 pm                  Registration                          THH  203


Saturday, April 09 – In Person and Virtual Sessions

Session 1-A (8AM – 10AM): Hybrid Dress and Material Culture”

Room: THH 205; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Kathryn Brock

  • 8:00 Kathryn BrockIn Person: Bridget Cleary and Community After Clonmel: A Folk History of Dressmaking in Rural Ireland
  • 8:30 Zahra AbedinezhadVirtual: The Aesthetics of Self-Repression in Dress and Body Art among Middle-class Urban Iranian Men
  • 8:50 Yosser SaidaneVirtual: The Bakhnoug: Female Threads of Lost Meaning
  • 9:30 Kiana NadonzaVirtual: Locating the beauty pageant in everyday practices of the Philippines.

Session 1-A (8AM – 10AM): “Magic of Popularity”

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room THH 207

Chair: Jared Schmidt, Tech Moderator: TBA

  • 8:00 Jared Schmidt: Bearing Bela – Bodylore and the Immortalizing of Lugosi’s Portrayal of Count Dracula through Tattoos
  • 8:30 Molly McBride: The Folklore of Algorithms.
  • 9:00 Alex Ziegler: Making the Old New: The Recontextualization of Tree Spirits in Video Games
  • 9:30 Oula Miqbel: “Changelings & Ogbanjes & Silas, Oh My!”: How Hanging Spirits Become Monsters in Your Closet


*BREAK (10:00 AM – 10:15 AM)*


Session 2-A (10:15AM-12:15PM): “Folk Religion and Ritual”

Room: THH 205; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Jesse Valdez

  • 10:15 Jesse Valdez: The Myth of Princess Bari and Grief Rituals in Korean Shamanism
  • 10:45 Emma Crisp: “A refrische ‘e ll’anime d’o priatorio”: Death and the dead in Neapolitan vernacular religion.
  • 11:15 Ysamur Flores-Pena: “What Child is This? Creativity and folk practices in Los Angeles Candlemas Celebration

Session 2-A (10:15AM-12:15PM): “Ritual Relations”

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room THH 207

Chair: Christopher Blythe, Tech Moderator: TBA

  • 10:15 Christopher Blythe: “Haunted with the Spirits of the Dead”: Apparitions and Proper Burial in Latter-day Saint Folklore
  • 10:45 Chen Jia: From “Locking” to “Unlocking”: The Ritual Process and Transitional Significance of Chinese Tong Guan Ritual
  • 11:15 Millie Tullis: Mormon Love Magic: Divination, Dreams, Blessings and Prompts
  • 11:45 Wei Liu: Contracts and Contractual Relationships in Huizhou Everyday Life, Eastern China


*LUNCH (12:30 PM – 1:30 PM)*


Session 3-A (1:45PM – 3:45PM): “Ritual and Health”

Room: THH 205; also streaming on Zoom

Chair: Montana Miller

  • 1:45 Montana Miller: Unspeakable Transformations: Sharing the Everyday Magic and Misery of Dark Personal Rituals in an Online Addiction Community
  • 2:15 Amira Hassnaoui: Presentation on “the Performance Idiom, Banga”
  • 2:45 Kristiana Willsey: Covid Illness Narratives and Viral Grief
  • 3:15 Nicole Tubman: Shifting: An Internet Phenomenon Through the Lens of Altered States of Consciousness and Healing Modalities

Session 3-A (1:45PM – 3:45PM): “Performance in Everyday Life”

Zoom Meeting; On Display in Room THH 207

Chair: Michael Bell, Tech Moderator: Alex Ziegler

  • 1:45 Steven Merrell: They’re not Just Stories, and They’re Certainly not Lies: The Function, Purpose, and Need for Fairytales, Legends, and Myths
  • 2:15 Elliot Oring: What Should Be Done with the Dirty Joke?
  • 2:45 Michael J. Bell: Maya Wore the Wrong Shoes to Work


*Conference concludes with BUSINESS MEETING at 4:00PM via Zoom*


Location Map

Figure 1. Please refer to this map for building locations. THH is Taper Hall.