Skip to main content

Law and Order on the Playground

Traditional children's pastimes rarely disappear completely; they simply change, adapting to varying circumstances. In southern California, for example, where the afternoons are far too hot for vigorous running, "Hide and Go Seek" is rarely played. Instead there is a "new" game, "Marco Polo" in which swimmers try to outwit and outrace a goal tender guarding a "base" at one end of a swimming pool.

Is this a new game or simply another variation on an age-old theme? Folklorists dealing with traditional children's lore continually confront just this kind of problem, because the double factors of stability and variation that characterize all ...

Read Full Article

Support the Folklife Festival, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, sustainability projects, educational outreach, and more.