LV Latviski

The very first Baltic Summer School of Digital Humanities (BSSDH 2018) on July 17–20, 2018 offers an introductory crash-course to the text mining methods, use of digital tools and resources in humanities and social sciences. The programme is co-taught by an international team of researchers and practitioners of digital humanities and social sciences and is delivered in a form of lectures and practical workshops covering: corpus analysis, computational stylistics, data journalism, GIS in the Humanities, data visualization.

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Latvian Folkloristics in the Interwar Period

The Finnish Academy of Science and Letters in the FF Communications series has released a collective monograph on the history of Latvian folklore studies. Latvian Folkloristics in the Interwar Period is a contribution by Latvian scholars to the current reflexive trend of folklore studies toward an intense focus on the discipline’s past. It also joins the recent efforts to broaden the geographical scope of folklore history by concentrating on internationally less represented research traditions.

The interwar period in Latvia, as in most European countries, was a formative era during which the patriotic duty of collecting and publishing folklore was transformed into a full-fledged, institutionalised academic discipline. The Archives of Latvian Folklore was established; the University of Latvia began offering courses in folkloristics and ethnography; and Latvian folklorists sought a place in the networks of international cooperation flourishing in Europe at that time. By offering a broad perspective on Latvian interwar folkloristics, this book covers relevant national and international contexts of folklore research, dominant research paradigms and key personalities in the field.


Call for papers: The 2nd International conference Queer Narratives in European Cultures: subjectivity, memory, nation, Riga, June 7–8, 2018

The second edition of the international conference „Queer Narratives in European Cultures” invites scholars from various fields of humanities who deal with LGBTI history and queer theory. The conference will be focused on the region of the Baltic States and their neighboring countries – the region of East and Central Europe where LGBTI and queer studies are still an emerging discipline. Due to the historical conditions and the post-socialist legacy, LGBTI activism and scholarship of gay and lesbian history of the region has developed almost simultaneously with queer theory and its politics of difference and anti-representation. The conference will focus on both of these divisions, serving as a meeting point for scholars of different backgrounds and disciplines.

The themes of the conference are subjectivity, memory and nation. We welcome you to explore both the history of the region and the current situation, to focus on the role of the subject with its desires and experiences as well as on the problem of agency in different time periods. We also invite you to think about the processes of construction and representation of the memory both by individuals and groups. Discussions of nation and nationalism are also present when speaking about the LGBTI and queer community and relationship between the state and the individual choices of persons. The scholars are welcomed to propose their papers or panels which fall in the relevant topics. Read more...


Reflecting on Disciplinary Ethics in Folkloristics

Are there situations when personal engagement can get in the way of truthful reporting? To whom the folklorist should be responsible more – the scholarly truth or the informant? What are the researchers’ responsibilities to those being studied? Are there any fields of research too sensitive and ethically too difficult to be addressed at all? What are the principles of ethically correct work with archived material and its representation in the digital tradition archives? What are the new ethical challenges introduced by the Digital Age? How the research is going to affect the lives of informants and should such influence be exerted by the results of the research? Can researchers have too much empathy? Some questions regarding the ethics in folkloristics might never be answered, but nevertheless: with this conference we would like the young folklorists to join the international debate. Read more...


Seminar for researchers of Latvian Roma

On 24 October at 10 am a seminar for researchers of Latvian Roma will take place at the Conference Centre of the National Library of Latvia (Riga, Mūkusalas street 3, room 078), organized by the Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art of the University of Latvia. It will be the first time in the history of Latvia when fifteen researchers from Latvia, Estonia, Sweden and Great Britain will come together to share their research in the fields of history, folkloristics, ethnomusicology, sociology, anthropology, pedagogy and psychology. The aim of the seminar is to inform society about research on Latvian Roma, to increase the visibility of the research of Roma, and to contribute to communication and collaboration between researchers. Read more...


The series of publications "Studia humanitarica" by the University of Latvia Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art has just published another valuable addition the scholarly monograph by Dr. philol. Sanita Reinsone "Apmaldīšanās poētika teikās, stāstos un sarunās" (The Poetics of Getting Lost in Legends, Stories and Conversations) Rīga: LU LFMI, 2017, 248 lpp.). The book is based on the dissertation defended by the author in 2012 at the University of Latvia. The book was prepared and published within the framework of the budget sub-programme No. 05.04.00 "Krišjāņa Barona Dainu skapis" (The Cabinet of Folksongs of Krišjānis Barons) of the Ministry of Education and science of the Republic of Latvia and with the support of State Culture Capital Foundation. Read more...


The series of publications "Studia humanitarica" by the University of Latvia Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art has just received a valuable addition the scholarly monograph by Dr. art. Ieva Tihovska "Īsta čigānu mūzika: Autentiskums un etniskums Latvijas čigānu (romu) mūzikā" (Real Gypsy music: Authenticity and ethnicity in the music of the Latvian Gypsies (Roma people); Rīga: LU LFMI, 2017, 248 lpp. ) The book is based on the dissertation defended by the author in 2014 at the Academy of Music named after Jāzeps Vītols. The book was prepared and published within the framework of the budget sub-programme No. 05.04.00 "Krišjāņa Barona Dainu skapis" (The Cabinet of Folksongs of Krišjānis Barons) of the Ministry of Education and science of the Republic of Latvia and with the support of State Culture Capital Foundation. Read more...


The International Council on Archives Section on University and Research Institution Archives (ICA-SUV) is holding its 2017 Conference, “Cultural Heritage Materials–University, Research and Folklore Archives in the 21st Century” in Riga, the National Library of Latvia, from August 21—25. The participants have been invited to explore the archival practices in universities and research archives and those in folklore archives where more intensive collection management, access, and use practices have been critical. The conference was organized by the ICA-SUV in collaboration with the National Archives of Latvia and the Archives of Latvian Folklore, Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art of the University of Latvia. Read more...


Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore

On 22nd and 23rd May, 2017 representatives of the Archives of Latvian Folklore and Estonian Folklore Archives paid a visit to the Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore (Lietuvių literatūros ir tautosakos institutas) in Vilnius.

The seminars and the discussions intended to promote development of joint initiatives, stimulate regional co-operation, exchange of information and form wide collaborative networks between the tradition archives of the Baltic sea region are organised already for the second year with the support of the Nordic and Baltic mobility programme "Culture". Read more...


Call for Papers for the 11th International Conference of Baltic Literary Scholars "Global Contexts, National Literatures" at the Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore (ILLF) on 26-27 October 2017 in Vilnius, Lithuania.

First launched in 1995, conferences of Baltic literary scholars have been organized in Tallinn, Riga, or Vilnius every two years. They have focused on a circle of issues related to the memory of the Soviet period that is common to all three Baltic countries. At the most recent conference in Riga in 2014, The Changing Baltics: Cultures within Cultures, a suggestion was put forward to complement the issue of memory with that of the identity in the global context and to pay more attention to comparative studies of contemporary literatures of the Baltic countries. Read more...


In May 2017, Cambridge Scholars Publishing has released a book by Pauls Daija titled the Literary History and Popular Enlightenment in Latvian Culture.

For the first time, the international reading public can read a study devoted to the Latvian literary history of the late 18th and early 19th centuries — a period of time when the German Volksaufklärung (popular enlightenment) project was imported to the Baltic provinces of Russia. While previous studies on the 18-century Baltic enlightenment history have focused on socio-economic debates of this era, as exemplified in works of Garlieb Merkel and others, this book offers a closer look at the printed media written in the vernacular for Latvian peasants in order to enlighten and educate the lower classes of Baltic society. Read more...


At the end of April Cambridge Scholars Publishing released a collection of articles prepared by ILFA Mapping the History of Folklore Studies: Centers, Borderlands and Shared Spaces (ed. by Dace Bula and Sandis Laime). Articles are based on papers presented during the conference dedicated to the 90th anniversary of the Archives of Latvian Folklore which was held in Riga in October 2014.

The collection of articles provides rich and diverse insights into the historical dynamics of folkloristic thought with its shifting geographies, shared spaces, centres and borderlands. By focusing on intellectual collaboration and sharing, the volume also reveals the limitations, barriers and boundaries inherent in scholarship and scholarly communities. Read more...


Call for Papers for the International Conference "Literary Canon Formation as Nation-building in Central and Eastern Europe (19th to Early 20th Century)" on 3–4 May, 2018 in Vilnius at Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore.

Sharing a common culture is one of the most solid grounds for acquiring a sense of community. During the rise of modern nations, literature had an important role in consolidating national communities and shaping their values, even becoming the medium through which the identity of a national community is formed. Literary works of various genres took part in the collective imagining of national communities. Thus, a constant need in Central and Eastern Europe of the 19th and early 20th century was to define the national literature and form the national literary canon, and it was directly related to the development of national conscience and cultural selfconsciousness. The national literary canon, which would be established and promoted by institutions of education, research, criticism and publishing, would function as an important and influential instrument in creating national cultural identity and shaping historical memory.

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