In this Hungarian Roma version of the well known "clever maiden" folktale type, a Gypsy girl is seen bathing by a king, and he demands to marry her. She first gives a mathematical riddle to the king to solve (he fails to do so), and then solves all the king's riddles, including the classic "come to me not clothed but not naked, walking but not walking, etc." She becomes queen in the end.
I especially like this story because girls, especially girls from marginalized groups, are rarely ever portrayed as, or encouraged to be, good at things like mathematics. By the way, the riddle says: "I am as old as I am. My mother is twice as old as I am. My father is two years older than my mother, and together the three of us are 100 years old!" Can you solve it?
(Hungarian text here)
The stolen bairn and the Sídh
A Scottish folktale about a mother whose baby is taken by the fairies. She goes to search for him, and she is helped by an old Gypsy (not clear if Roma or Traveler) grandmother who instructs her on how to get the baby back.
(You can read this story in Thistle and Thyme)
Once again, I am referring back to the Romance of Antar, because while Antar is accepted into his Arab tribe, he is also referred to as a "raven" for being born from a black African (slave) mother.
(I blogged about this epic here)
The King, the Vizier, and the Clever Jew
In this Moroccan Jewish folktale, a jealous vizier tries to turn a king against the Jewish community and the rabbi he respects. The rabbi is tasked with counting the stars in the sky and measuring the water of the ocean. When all seems lost, a drunkard from the community volunteers to give a clever answer to the king, and save his people from punishment.
(This tale type, about counting stars and water, also exists in other cultures.)
(Read the story in this book)
The servant's dream
A very famous Peruvian folktale, collected by writer José Maria Arguedas. In it, an indigenous servant is humiliated and tortured by his master, who takes enjoyment in his power. In the end, the servant claims he had a prophetic dream about what will happen after death, and the master demands to hear it. The dream portrays the master treated well by angels and covered in honey, and the servant covered in excrement. And then, just when the master is most satisfied with the "prophetic dream," comes the surprise ending: "... and then we were told to lick each other clean."
(If he had a mic, he probably would have dropped it)
(Read the Spanish text here)
Florida legend about a powerful medicine man that leads his fellow slaves to freedom, and then turns into a giant alligator that is still said to haunt the swamps in Florida. Sometimes he turns back into a man, and rewards or punishes people according to their deeds.
(Read his story in this book)
The Metlicani and the Gypsy
This folktale from Slovenia tells about a Gypsy sentenced to death for theft who tricks the baronass that sentenced him, and gets away alive. I am including it for two reasons, one, because the story highlights that he stole the goose out of hunger and to provide for his family, and two, because he wins his life and freedom with ingenuity against power.
(Found the English translation in the Journal of the Ohio Folklore Society I/2, 1972)
I am including this story here because it says a lot about the relationship between "researchers" and indigenous communities. According to this story from the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, an anthropologist comes across a trapped Coyote (who is a famous indigenous trickster figure) and offers to free it in exchange for money and a long story. Coyote forks over the money and tells a story until the recording tape runs out. But once he is free and away, and the researcher returns home, he discovers that the money turned to leaves and the tape recorder is full of Coyote droppings...
(Read the story, and many other Coyote tales, in this book)
What other stories should I add to this list?