Michael L. Murray is a folklorist who specializes in traditional culture in the American suburb, vernacular art and artists, and public culture studies. He is currently a lecturer at Princeton University where he teaches interdisciplinary writing seminars on folklore, ethnography, and cultural studies. An active public folklorist, Michael has served as director of the folk and traditional arts program of the Westchester Arts Council, White Plains, New York and as curator of the Rockland County Folklife Festival in New City, New York. He studied folklore as an undergraduate at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, and he earned his master's degree in folklore from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 2006, Michael earned his doctorate from Penn in folklore and folklife. His dissertation, Beyond American Folk Art: The Emergence of Folk Art as a Museum Object, 1924 to 2001, looks critically at the history of folk art exhibition in New York City's museum world. As a fellow of the center, Michael is continuing his research on the implications of institutional practices, such as archival description and exhibition, for traditional communities as well as the knowledge institutions that work to document and collect their expressive culture.
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