Archive for the Month »September, 2012«

Message from Dorothy Noyes: Ohio State University announces new PhD fellowships in folklore

September 20, 2012  Published by

Dear colleagues, The Center for Folklore Studies is delighted to announce that the College of Arts and Sciences of the Ohio State University has created two new graduate fellowships targeted for folklore students. Because our PhD program is interdepartmental, these fellowships will make it easier for us to admit students whose research interests do not align well with departmental priorities. They will also allow us to offer a total of six years of support instead of the usual five, allowing for a supported fieldwork year. Students will continue to apply through our participating departments, and most folklore students will continue to be supported by departments and eligible for the usual competitive university fellowships. Students wishing to be considered for the folklore-specific fellowships should notify both the intended department and the Center for Folklore Studies to ensure joint review of their applications. The support package for the fellowship awardees will normally consist of six years of tuition and fees plus nine-month living stipend, broken down as follows: three years as a teaching assistant in the relevant department, two years as archivist or graduate assistant in the Center for Folklore Studies, and one year on fellowship. (This is for students entering at MA level; students with the MA will receive fewer years of funding. Continuity of funding from year to year assumes the student's satisfactory academic progress.) The fellowship year will come after the PhD candidacy exam, typically in the fourth year; the distribution of the other years will be worked out between the student, CFS, and the department, subject to program needs. In this way, students will build up a strong and varied teaching profile along with archival and administrative experience. It is expected that in most cases the fellowship will free students up for a fieldwork year. Students will earn a degree in the relevant department along with a Graduate Interdisciplinary Specialization in Folklore. International students are eligible for support and warmly encouraged to apply; please note that a long lead time is required for a successful international application. For further information, see In practice, we find it easiest to evaluate and easiest to admit international students when they come to us through the Fulbright program or with a grant from their home country: please explore these possibilities. Graduate admissions are limited in number and therefore highly selective. Our PhD students have done well in a difficult job market. Prospective students should contact Prof. Ray Cashman, CFS Director of Graduate Studies > to discuss intellectual interests and departmental fit, and to alert us of your intention to apply. We encourage you to explore the Center website beforehand to familiarize yourself with our faculty and programs. Dorothy Noyes Professor, Departments of English and Comparative Studies Director, The Center for Folklore Studies> Research Associate, The Mershon Center for International Security Studies The Ohio State University


Message from Brenda Beck: Publication of Annanmarswami kathai as a graphic novel

September 15, 2012  Published by

Dear Colleague,

I am happy to share the good news that a project I have worked on for
nearly 50 years has just become accessible to all via the internet.
The Legend of Ponnivala is a major South Indian oral folk epic that I
collected in 1965 from a singing bard. I have now overseen its
animation in 26 colorful episodes using artwork inspired by genuine
South Indian folk traditions. My team and I have also compressed the
story into 26 full color graphic novels.

As culturally informative reading books for young people The Legend of
Ponnivala is a vividly entertaining adventure story. As a resource
that invites insightful analysis by college students wishing to learn
about India, the Ponnivala story presents many indigenous Hindu folk
ideals in a crystallized, colorful and memorable form.

Series 1 of the larger Ponnivala graphic novel set is available now as
13 ebooks in English on Amazon Kindle. Series 2, along with a Tamil
language edition, will be available shortly. Just type “Ponnivala”
in Kindle’s search box, or go directly to

(Kindle reader apps are available for a wide variety of devices and
desktop platforms at no cost from

Teachers interested in using some of my analytic essays and study
guides on various Ponnivala topics are welcome to contact me. Our
animated videos, including two feature-length overviews of the story,
are also available for classroom use. Some key points of study include
the roles of various Hindu gods and goddesses, traditional family
structure and social values, the nature of political leadership,
mythic tales of creation, core events in medieval Indian history,
links to the Mahabharata and much more.

I hope you will join me in discovering more about The Legend of
Ponnivala, my passion and the focus of my work for more than four

Yours sincerely,
Brenda Beck
Adjunct Professor, Department of Anthropology, The University of

All India Tata Fellowships in Folklore 2012-2013

September 9, 2012  Published by

All India Tata Fellowships in Folklore 2012-2013

National Folklore Support Centre’s Tata Fellowships in Folklore are meant for Post Graduate degree holders in Arts and Humanities, capable of delivering folklore research and documentation. This programme facilitates a scholar belonging to one community to work collaboratively with another community’s elder or an artist to document the community elder/ artist’s folklore/tradition for a year-long period. Each fellowship will carry an award of Rs.9450/- per month for the scholar and another Rs.9450/- per month for the community elder or artist. In addition to the monthly award each fellowship carries a contingency of Rs.50,000/- per annum to cover travel and documentation expenses. National Folklore Support Centre will select and archive the audio-visual documentation resulting out of this programme and will also use the documentation for its teaching programmes. The application must be sent by the scholar along with the consent letter of the community elder/artist.

Priority areas and themes: Priority will be accorded to proposals on Tribal Folklore. 


Priority sub-themes: 

  • Verbal arts including oral epics 
  • Folk painting 
  • Folk music
  • Indigenous Knowledge Systems
  • Traditional medicine
  • Cultures of learning

Relaxation of condition:  A scholar belonging to a community working with another different community elder or an artist may be relaxed in case of language intensive proposal at the discretion of the selection committee. 


To apply, please submit a detailed project proposal along with the following details to the Director of National Folklore Support Centre  through post or by email:

  • The specific cultural tradition of the community elder/artist you seek to research and document.
  • The research questions that are central to your project.
  • The research and documentation methods you seek to follow.
  • Description of what you consider important in the collaborative undertaking between you and the other community elder/ artist.
  • A monthly field work plan for a period of one year starting from November 2012 to October 2013.
  • The proposed output and impact of the project including how the documentation can be used in teaching programmes.

Please remember to include the following with your proposal

  • Your bio-data with complete address, telephone/fax numbers, Skype id and email address.
  • Bio-data of your collaborator with complete postal address.  
  • Consent letter from the other community elder/artist to collaboratively work with you for a period of one year to facilitate the research and documentation process.

Supporting material to show your experience in undertaking this research and documentation project:

  • Published articles – if any  
  • Written / published papers – if any 
  • Photographs 
  • Videos 

Please video record the answers for the following questions in a CD/DVD and send it along with the application: 

  1. Describe your project and your scholarly and technical ability to undertake your project.
  2. Why do you think that this project requires the fellowship support?
  3. What are the expected output and impact of your project? 

*In case if you are not able to video record and send us the CD/DVD, you may write and send it along with application.  

Selection Procedure

  • All the applications will be centrally received at NFSC, Chennai.
  • The selection committee will select the final Tata fellowship awardees. 
  • Total Number of Fellowships for the second round of fellowships in the year 2012-2013: 22 (Twenty two):-  


  • You are eligible to apply if you are an Indian national.  
  • Post graduate degree holders in Arts and Humanities, capable of delivering folklore research and documentation. 
  • Senior scholars above the age 55 and retired scholars are NOT eligible for this fellowship.

Important Dates

Your application should reach National Folklore Support Centre on or before October 10, 2012.

Interview and training

  • All the applications will be reviewed by the selection committee members to select the candidates. 
  • NFSC will organize a three-day training workshop for the selected candidates during November 2012 at the Central University of Jharkhand, Ranchi, Jharkahnad. NFSC collaborates with Central University of Jharkhand, Ranchi, Jharkhand for the conduct of the training programme. 
  • The decision of the selection committee will be final. 

Send your application to

National Folklore Support Centre,
No. 508, Fifth Floor, “Kaveri Complex”,
96, Mahatma Gandhi Road, Nungambakkam,
Chennai- 600034. Phones: 044-28229192/ 044-42138410/044-28212706


Tata Fellowships in Folklore are implemented by NFSC from a grant received from Sir Dorabji Tata and Allied Trusts. 

For further information contact:

Ms Niyati Mehta
Programme Officer
Media, Art and Culture
Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and the Allied Trusts
Eruchshaw Building, 5th Floor,
249 DN Road, Mumbai 400 001.
Tel: 022 6665 7697 Fax: 022 66100484