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World Storytelling Day: Stories of Strong Women

March 20 is World Storytelling Day.  Tying storytelling with the equinox in March is thought to have originated in Sweden as Alla berättares dag (all storytellers day) in 1991 or 1992. Other countries joined to celebrate storytelling on the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere and the first day of autumn in the […]

Searching for Nina Tarasova

This week the Library of Congress historic newspaper resource, Chronicling America, will pass a milestone of making ten million digitized pages of American newspapers available free online. These papers were selected by institutions in thirty-eight states and territories, with more expected to be added. When I was working on an article, “Russian American Song,” for […]

What is it About May?

I confess. I always get a little giddy in May. Maybe it’s because the longer, warmer days of May mark the impending arrival of summer, my absolute favorite season. Yes, I am one of the rare lovers of brutally hot, humid DC summers. Or maybe May brings out the giddiness in me because I admire […]

“A Dudele”: A Little Song for Jewish Heritage Month

Jewish vocal music culture in the United States reflects the variety of the many different parts of the diaspora from which the Jewish immigrants originally came, as well as different song traditions among Jewish denominations. This essay will examine some of the Jewish folksongs curated by the Recorded Sound section, the Music Division, and the […]