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Benjamin A. Botkin head and shoulders portrait
Folklorist Benjamin A. Botkin, 1926. Photo courtesy of the Botkin family.

Benjamin A. Botkin Folklife Lecture Series

Through the Benjamin A. Botkin Folklife Lecture Series, the American Folklife Center (AFC) presents distinguished experts speaking about their research and current issues and best practices in folklore, folklife, ethnomusicology, and related fields. Lectures are recorded for the AFC archive and posted on the Library's website. (See below for list of speakers and topics.) The series honors Benjamin A. Botkin (1901-1975), a pioneering folklorist who headed the Library's Archive of American Folksong from 1942-1945.

2018 Botkin Lectures

Since '68: Cultural Organizations, Programming, Documentation, and Community Enrichment

Three photos left to right, a quilt of a sun over mountains with "Appalshop" above, a dance event with a young man doing a stand on one hand as other performers look on, and the front of a brick building with a sign reading Drum and Spear and a woman just visible inside the door.

From right to left: a quilt celebrating Appalshop, courtesy of Appalshop; a Center for Traditional Music and Dance event in New York, courtesy of CTMD; the Drum and Spear building, DC, courtesy of Drum and Spear.

September 24, 2018, 1:00 pm to 4:30 pm
Whittall Pavilion, Ground floor
Thomas Jefferson Building

Find the schedule and bios of speakers at the new site for this afternoon symposium

On Sept. 24, 2018, The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress will host "Since 1968: Cultural Organizations, Programming and Documentation, and Community Enrichment in New York, Kentucky, and Washington D.C.," an afternoon symposium that explores the themes of cultural work, geography, and community as manifest in the history of three organizations who trace their beginnings to the swell of social change that emerged in 1968: the Center for Traditional Music and Dance, Appalshop, and the Drum and Spear Bookstore.

Free and open to the public. No registration or tickets required. Seating is limited. Request ADA accommodations five days in advance at 202-707-6362 or [email protected]

American Folklife Center Summer Music Jam (Blues with Phil Wiggins)

Phil Wiggins
Phil Wiggins
Saturday, September 29  2:00 pm-4:00 pm
Veterans History Project Information & Welcome Center (LJ-G51)
Thomas Jefferson Building, Library of Congress

The American Folklife Center is hosting a series of informal jams to celebrate our living folk traditions, and to bring to life the collections from our vast ethnographic archive. All sessions will include a short tour of the resources available to musicians in the Folklife Reading Room. So grab your guitar, harmonica, or whatever other instruments you play, and come on over to the Library of Congress for the fourth jam, dedicated to blues. The session will be led by 2017 NEA Heritage Fellow Phil Wiggins, and will feature well known blues standards as well as songs mined from the AFC Archive. An electric piano will be available. Admission is free! 

Request ADA accommodations five days in advance at 202-707-6362 or [email protected]

This event is co-sponsored by the Archie Edwards Blues Heritage Foundation in celebration of the Foundation’s 20th Anniversary.

Botkin Lecture Series Past Events Archive

Includes descriptions of each lecture, photos, and informational essays from the event flyers. Links to webcasts of lectures are included as available.

2018 Lecture Series

2017 Lecture Series

2016 Lecture Series

2015 Lecture Series

2014 Lecture Series

2013 Lecture Series

2012 Lecture Series

2011 Lecture Series

2010 Lecture Series

2009 Lecture Series

2008 Lecture Series

2007 Lecture Series

2006 Lecture Series

2005 Lecture Series

2004 Lecture Series


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   September 20, 2018
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