By Andrew Shaffer
Over the last few months, we’ve had the pleasure of publishing thoughtful reflections, compelling narratives, and deep engagements with what it means to do oral history. Each post was written by a member of the oral history community who was willing to share his or her thoughts and experiences with all of us. We received an incredible response from our last call for submissions, so we’re coming back again to ask for more. But first, let’s talk about how amazing the posts we’ve published in the last few months have been.
In February, Mark Larson shared some of his multimedia oral histories and explained how his process aims to see the world through the eyes of his interviewee.
Students at Columbia University’s Oral History Master’s Program took to the OHA blog in March to give us a taste of the groundbreaking work they’re doing, both in their research and on their own blog.
Melissa Ziobro opened up in April about some of the difficulties she has had starting a veteran’s oral history project, and asked for input from the community to help it grow.
In May, Hank Greenspan gave a moving account of what can happen as relationships grow and develop between interviewers and interviewees over time.
Two weeks ago, we featured a powerful narrative from Eliza Lambert asking how oral historians can preserve the beauty and value of stories that need to be shared, even when they fall outside of our project’s scope.
So now it’s your turn. Whether you have reflections on fieldwork, thoughts on the field of oral history as a whole, or a compelling narrative that is crying out for an audience, we want to hear from you. We want to use our social media platforms to encourage discussion within the broad community of oral historians, from professional historians to hobbyists. Part of encouraging that discussion is asking you all to contribute your thoughts and experiences.
We are looking for posts between 500-800 words or 15-20 minutes of audio or video. These are rough guidelines, however, so we are open to negotiation in terms of media and format. We should also stress that while we welcome posts that showcase a particular project, we can’t serve as landing page for kickstarter or similar funding sites.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Image Credit: “Mailboxes” by tanakawho. CC BY NC 2.0 via Flickr.