Oral Tradition is a peer-reviewed academic journal established in 1986 by John Miles Foley covering studies in oral tradition and related fields. As well as essays treating certifiably oral traditions, the journal presents investigations of the relationships between oral and written traditions, as well as brief accounts of important fieldwork, a symposium section (in which scholars may reply at some length to prior essays), review articles, occasional transcriptions and translations of oral texts, a digest of work in progress, and a regular column for notices of conferences and other matters of interest. Oral Tradition spans a number of academic fields and disciplines, including, folklore, cultural anthropology, social anthropology, ethnography, ethnomusicologylinguistics, classics, and comparative literature.
From 1986 till the end of 2006, Oral Tradition was published by Slavica Publishers, with an additional online edition through Project MUSE from 2003 onward. However, both of these publication venues are subscription-based and for that reason they unavoidably excluded a substantial segment of the journal's potential readership, particularly non-western academics and institutions. To rectify this, beginning in September 2006, Oral Tradition is published open access by the Center for Studies in Oral Tradition. All journal articles from this point onward will be published exclusively online, but back print issues are now available online as well.