Margaret R. Yocom (Ph.D., English, University of Massachusetts, Amherst: 1980), a folklorist who specializes in family folklore, oral narrative, material culture, and gender studies, is an associate professor of English at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. The director of the Northern Virginia Folklife Archive, she established the English Department’s Folklore, Mythology, and LIterature Concentration; the Folklore and Mythology Minor; and the Folklore Concentration in Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies.

She teaches courses in traditional narrative and storytelling, traditional arts, gender, ethnographic writing, and folklore and creative writing.

She has conducted fieldwork in her home Pennsylvania German culture as well as with the Inuit of northwestern Alaska and several Northern Virginia communities. Her major fieldsite is a North Appalachian mountain community in western Maine.

She has published articles and photographs on ethnographic fieldwork, regional study, ethnopoetics, family folklore, gender, and material culture. Her most recent work includes “‘We’ll Take Care of Liza and the Kids’: Spontaneous Memorials and Personal Response at the Pentagon, 2001" in Spontaneous Shrines and Other Public Memorializations of Death (2006); “Exuberance in Control: The Dialogue of Ideas in the Tales and Fan Towers of Woodsman William Richard of Phillips, Maine” in Northeast Folklore: Essays in Honor of Edward D. Ives (2000); and “ ‘Awful Real’: Dolls and Development in Rangeley, Maine” (1993). She is the assistant editor of Ugiuvangmiut Quliapyuit: King Island Tales (1988); and in 1994, she edited and wrote Logging in the Maine Woods: The Paintings of Alden Grant. She has published non-fiction in Friends Journal and poetry in Voices: The Journal of New York Folklore. Her current folklore project is a book on the traditional arts of the Richard family of Rangeley, Maine.

Active in public sector folklore, she serves as folkorist at the Rangeley Lakes Region Logging Museum in Rangeley, Maine, as well as consultant to various projects at the Smithsonian Institution, the NEA, and the Maine Arts Commission. She also serves on the boards of the National Council for the Traditional Arts, the Maine Folklife Center, the Rangeley Lakes Region Historical Society, and the Rangeley Lakes Region Logging Museum. She co-founded the Folklore and Creative Writing Section of the American Folklore Society, and serves as liason between the American Folklore Society and the Association of Writers and Writing Programs.