ISCLR mourns the passing of friends and legend scholars, Karen Baldwin and George Mifsud-Chircop
| suicides and crimes of violence|
| university buildings|
| personalities (professors, students), especially eccentric ones|
| the 1960s and their aftermath|
| student fraternities|
| stories from the faculty of medicine|
| stories from the faculty of law.|
|* Speak to good vs. evil/ us against them/ powerful against the powerless, and a sense of persecution on the part of the victims or targets of the conspiracy|
|* Are always sociopolitical in nature|
|* Speak to whom and what is truly American|
|* Inherently contain elements of suspicion, fear, and anxiety|
|* Build on themselves through events that serve as proof feeders|
FOAFtale News (FTN) is the newsletter of the International Society for Contemporary Legend Research. We study "modern" and "urban" legends, and also any legend circulating actively. To join, send a cheque made out to "ISCLR" for US$40.00 or UK£20 to Mikel J. Koven, AHSS, University of Worcester, Henwick Grove, Worcester WR2 6AJ, UK. Institutional rates available upon request. Members also receive Contemporary Legend, a refereed academic journal. Some back issues of FTN are available on-line at http://www.folklore.ee/FOAFtale.
FOAFtale News is indexed in the MLA Bibliography.
This newsletter is called FOAFtale News for the jocular term current among legend scholars for over twenty years. The term "foaf" was introduced by Rodney Dale (in his 1978 book, The Tumour in the Whale) for an oft-attributed but anonymous source of contemporary legends: a "friend of a friend." Dale pointed out that contemporary legends always seemed to be about someone just two or three steps from the teller a boyfriend's cousin, a co-worker's aunt, or a neighbor of the teller's mechanic. "Foaf" became a popular term at the Sheffield legend conferences in the 1980s. It was only a short step to the pun "foaftale," a step taken by a yet-anonymous wag.
The opinions expressed in FOAFtale News are those of the authors and do not in any necessary way represent those of the editor, the contributors, the International Society for Contemporary Legend Research, its Council, or its members.
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