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Finding Aid for the Alan Dundes papers BANC MSS 2007/115
BANC MSS 2007/115  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Biographical Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Processing Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: The Bancroft Library
    Title: Alan Dundes papers
    Creator: Dundes, Alan
    Source: Dundes, Carolyn B.
    Identifier/Call Number: BANC MSS 2007/115
    Physical Description: Linear Feet: 57. Container summary: 45 cartons; 1 box; 2 oversize folders.
    Date (inclusive): 1952-2008
    Date (bulk): 1963-2005
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.
    Language of Material: Collection materials are in English.
    Abstract: The Alan Dundes papers, 1952-2008, document Dundes' professional work and instruction in the field of folkloristics.

    Biographical Information

    Alan Dundes (September 8, 1934 – March 30, 2005) was an American folklorist, an instructor at the University of California, Berkeley, and a leading figure in folkloristic scholarship, widely known as one of the most influential and significant folklorists of the 20th century. Evoking structuralism and psychoanalytic theory as tools within his research, Dundes' scholarship stressed the importance of context for understanding folkloric expression. He has published over 250 articles and single-authored, co-authored, and edited upwards of 35 books during his career, ranging from folkloristic subjects of myth and legend to bathroom graffiti and football. He was also actively involved in numerous professional organizations throughout his career and was frequently requested as a public speaker. Dundes began his education studying music, later changing his focus to English. He received both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Yale University, where he also met his wife, Carolyn. Between degrees, Dundes joined the ROTC and spent two years in the United States Navy Reserve in Italy. Upon completion of his service, Dundes moved to Bloomington, Indiana where he earned his doctorate in folklore at Indiana University in just three years. After a year of instructing English at the University of Kansas, Dundes was offered a position in the Department of Anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley, where he remained until his death in 2005. As an instructor at UC Berkeley, Dundes was well-known for his engaging lectures, sense of humor, approachability, and expert knowledge of folklore. He was a leader in developing the UC Berkeley M.A. in Folklore program and pivotal in the establishment of UC Berkeley’s Folklore Archive, a collection of more than 500,000 items of folklore from around the world. His unique teaching style and passion for folklore made him one of the most popular professors at UC Berkeley, earning him a Distinguished Teaching Award in 1994, a Festschrift in 1995, and, in 2000, a one million dollar gift from a former student, which Dundes donated to UC Berkeley to endow a Distinguished Professorship in Folkloristics.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Alan Dundes papers, BANC MSS 2007/115, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Conditions Governing Use

    Materials in this collection may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition, the reproduction of some materials may be restricted by terms of University of California gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions, privacy and publicity rights, licensing and trademarks. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user. All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley 94720-6000. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    The Alan Dundes papers were given to The Bancroft Library by Carolyn Dundes on January 25, 2007.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Joanna M. Black in 2014.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Alan Dundes papers, 1952-2008, document Dundes' professional work and instruction in the field of folkloristics. The collection is arranged into nine series: Correspondence, Awards and Personal Material, Subject Files, Public Relations Material, Publications, Teaching, UC Administrative Files, Professional Activities, and Reprints. Dundes' expert knowledge of folklore is especially well documented in this collection in the form of research, references, and publications, and his extensive involvement in his field is illustrated in both correspondence and professional activities.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Faculty papers
    Folklorists -- United States
    Dundes, Alan
    Dundes, Alan