Folklore is the study of informally learned, traditional expressive culture and artistic communication. A primary emphasis in folklore studies is on tradition and the way tradition manifests in the modern world. A second key emphasis in folklore is on vernacular practices, that is, those activities that are generated by people themselves, rather than formal institutions. Folklorists study a range of communications that are often expressed in generic terms. Verbal forms include the study of folktales, legends, jokes, personal experience narratives, proverbs, superstitions, blaison popular, and many others. The study traditional objects and folklife ranges from areas such as vernacular architecture to more commodified forms such as yard art; and they may study customs such as dance, costume, and festivals and celebrations. Because of its central interest in expressive genres, folklore has long existed in and been a natural complement to English departments’ emphasis on literature and texts. Folklore courses were taught at Harvard in the nineteenth century; the first endowed chair in folklore was at Vassar in 1920.