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Conference: Diversity in Folk

Booking is now open for the annual conference of the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library. This year’s event will concentrate on racial and ethnic diversity, both historically focused and in contemporary discourse.


The conference will take place on Saturday 13 November 2021 and will be a hybrid event, with speakers and delegates both online and in the building at Cecil Sharp House.

It will focus on racial diversity in folk, combining historical discourse and the contemporary scene. In retaining an online option post-lockdowns we hope to welcome people from across the world, creating a forum for lively debate across boundaries on this crucial theme.

Papers will include:

  • The Black origins of sea shanties
  • How to Increase and Diversify Participation in English Folk Clubs?
  • International Relations: Nationalism and Internationalism in the English Folk Dance Revival
  • The Sorrow Songs: Folk Songs of Black British Experience
  • Racial crosscurrents in Appalachian folk song
  • Celebrating Diversity – Applications of Folklore to Shared Society Education within the Conflict Situation of the Middle East
  • Folk purism, the enemy of diversity

Book now