This institute was founded in 1939 as the Institute of Lithuanian Studies
with three departments: Lithuanian language, Lithuanian history, and
Lithuanian folklore. After the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences was
established in 1941, these departments became part of the Academy as the
Institutes of the Lithuanian Language and of Lithuanian Literature. In
1952 both institutes were joined together to form the Institute of the
Lithuanian Language and Literature, and in 1953, after the folklore group
was transferred from the Institute of History, the Department of Folklore
was established. This institute was headed by K. Korsakas (until 1984) and
J. Lankutis (1984-1990). The current Institute of Lithuanian Literature
and Folklore has officially existed since April 16, 1990, when the
Institute of the Lithuanian Language and Literature was reorganized. Algis
Kalėda has been the director of the Institute since December 2001.
The main areas of activity of the Institute of Lithuanian Literature and
Folklore include conducting research into historical and theoretical
problems of folklore, increasing and preserving the folklore archive, and
editing fundamental folklore publications.
Research fellows from the ILLFs Department of Folk Songs, Department of
Folk Narrative, and Department of Folklore Archives are involved in the
RaSa project. The Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore
maintains the biggest repository of folk materials in Lithuania -
Lietuvių Tautosakos Rankraštynas.