Paul Smith

Professor Emeritus
B.A. (Sheffield)
Ph.D. (Sheffield)

Dr. Paul Smith is involved in research on contemporary legend, traditional drama ( including the sword dance traditions in Shetland, Christmas mumming in Newfoundland, and issues of mumming and violence ), folklore as process, the marketing of traditions, folklore and popular literature, folklore and technology, computer application in folklore research, non-verbal traditions, folk custom, and food traditions. He has published numerous books, including two popular collections of contemporary legends and two on photocopy joke sheets. In collaboration with Dr. Gillian Bennett, he edited the five-volume Perspectives on Contemporary Legend essay series ( 1984 - 1990 ), wrote Contemporary Legend: The First Five Years ( 1990 ), compiled Contemporary Legend: An Annotated Bibliography (1993 ), edited Contemporary Legend: A Reader ( 1996 ) and authored Urban Legends: A Collection of International Tall Tales and Terrors (2007 ). In addition, he has written over 100 articles and chapters for a variety of journals and books, was editor of Contemporary Legend, and co-editor of Traditional Drama Studies, New Books in Folklore and Current Contents in Folklore. With John Widdowson, he is currently preparing for online publication a study of Traditional Drama in the Island of Newfoundland: Text, Context and Performance.  He was also the 2015 recipient of the Linda Degh Lifetime Achievement Award.