COVID-19 Oral History Resources

We’ve compiled many of the sources, oral history projects, and guidelines and considerations for interviewing amid COVID-19 recommended by the authors of the articles in OHR’s COVID-19 Special Section, published in issue 47.2. Expand any category to view and click on the selections. We also welcome your suggestions for further resources. Submit your recommendations here. 

COVID-19 Oral History Projects

Ansley, Laura. “Documenting Disaster: The Recent Louisiana Disasters Oral History Project.” Perspectives on History, April 29, 2020.

Boulds, Jason, interview by Stephen Good and Regan Steimel. The Covid-19 Oral History Project, April 7, 2020. (Indianapolis, IN: IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute)

Brinker, Jordan. “The Covid-19 Oral History Project.” IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute, March 27, 2020.

“COVID-19 Documentation Project.” Tufts University Digital Collections and Archives, May 24, 2020.

Crowdsourced list of COVID-19 Oral History Projects.

“Documenting COVID-19.” Chicago History Museum. 

“Dow 50 Story Gathering Project: From Demonstration to Commemoration.” University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries.

Klaas, Teboho, interview by Shonda Gladden and Emily Leiserson. The Covid-19 Oral History Project, April 11, 2020. (Indianapolis, IN: IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute)

Made By Us, International Federation for Public History. “You Are the Primary Source: Covid-19 Story-Collecting Initiatives."

“NYC COVID-19 Oral History, Narrative and Memory Archive.” INCITE Columbia University, May 23, 2020.

“Stanford University COVID-19 Oral History Project.” Stanford Historical Society, April 22, 2020.

“What Is Your COVID-19 Story?” DRI: Desert Research Institute, April 13, 2020,


Davis, Allison P. “An Oral History of a Social-Distancing Birthday Party.” The Cut, March 15, 2020.

Didier, Pierrine and Laurent Gontier. “Lockdown Stories: A Participatory Research Project.” Lockdown Stories: About, May 23, 2020. 

Fennessy, Steve, Betsy Riley, Marla Shalhoup, Christine Van Dusen, Myrydd Wells, and Thomas Wheatley. “21st Century Plague: 17 Georgians on What Coronavirus Has Done -- And What It Can Still Do.” Atlanta Magazine, March 29, 2020.

Francke, Tyler. “‘I’m Scared, To Be Honest’: An Oral History of Canby in the Midst of the COVID Crisis.” Canby Now Podcast, March 18, 2020.

Graff, Garrett M. "Birth, Death, Weddings Disrupted: An Oral History of Covid-19." Wired. March 27, 2020. 

Hesse, Monica and Dan Zak. “The Holiday of a Lifetime : An Oral History of the infected, rejected Zaandam Cruise Ship.” The Washington Post, April 2, 2020. 

Kircher, Madison Malone. “An Oral History of a Socially Distanced Wedding.” The Cut, March 23, 2020. 

“Project Redial: Coronavirus Stories,” May 23, 2020.

Saslow, Eli. “Voices from the Pandemic - Tony Sizemore, on the death of Birdie Shelton.” The Washington Post, March 28, 2020. 

Stein, Joshua David. “An Oral History of a Zoom Bar Mitzvah.” Grub Street, March 18, 2020. 

“The Mass Observation Archive,” May 23, 2020.

Zeiger,  Roni. “Data Are Shadows of Stories.” Siegel Rare Neuroimmune Association (SRNA), January 15, 2015.

Guidelines and Best Practices

American Anthropological Association. “Principles of Professional Responsibility.” Ethics Forum, 2012. 

Arvanitis, Kostas. “The ‘Manchester Together Archive’: Researching and Developing a Museum Practice of Spontaneous Memorials.” Museum and Society 17.3 (2019): 510–32.

Cave, Mark, and Stephen M Sloan. Listening on the Edge : Oral History in the Aftermath of Crisis. Oxford Oral History Series. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014)

Gardner, James B., Sarah M. Henry. “September 11 and the Mourning After: Reflections on Collecting and Interpreting the History of Tragedy.” The Public Historian 24.3 (2002): 37–52.

High, Steven. “Telling Stories: A Reflection on Oral History and New Media.Oral History, 38.1 (2010): 101-112. 

OHMA Columbia. "Mary Marshall Clark | Oral History of Disasters and Pandemics." YouTube. April 18, 2020. 

Oral History Association. “OHA Principles and Best Practices.” 

Ponichtera, Sarah. “Reconnecting with Each Other in the Current Pandemic.” Special Collections The Gallery (Seton Hall University Libraries, April 13, 2020)

Sarker, Mahua. “Between Craft and Method: Meaning and Inter-Subjectivity in Oral History Analysis.” Journal of Historical Sociology 25.4 (2012): 578–600.

Sloan, Stephen M. “Swimming in the Exaflood: Oral History as Information in the Digital Age,” Oral History and Digital Humanities: Voice, Access, and Engagement, ed. Douglas A. Boyd and Mary A. Larson (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014): 175–186.

Sullivan, Sady and Maggie Schreiner. “If You’re Thinking About Starting an Oral History Project.” The City Amplified: Oral Histories and Radical Archives. (New York City: The Center for the Humanities, 2018) 

Tchen, John Kuo Wei. “Who is Curating What, Why? Towards a More Critical Commoning Praxis.” Museum and Curatorial Studies Review 1.1 (Summer 2013), 5.

Yow, Valerie Raleigh. Recording Oral History: A Practical Guide for Social Scientists. (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1994): 106–107.

Remote Interviewing

Bourgeois, Jeremiah. “Formerly Incarcerated People Should Be Compensated for Telling Their Stories.” Truthout, May 17, 2020. 

Eisen, Lauren-Brooke and Lauren Seabrooks. “COVID-19 Highlights the Need for Prison Labor Reform.” Brennan Center for Justice, April 17, 2020. 

Hogarth, Rana A. Medicalizing Blackness: Making Racial Difference in the Atlantic World, 1780-1840 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2017)

Kraybill, Odelya Gertel. “What is Trauma? What you need to know about trauma and trauma therapy,” Psychology Today, May 20, 2020.

Maalouf, Monica. “Commentary: Collateral Damage in a Doctor’s Fight against COVID-19: Personal Stories and Connection.” Chicago Tribune, April 8, 2020.

McCracken, Krista. “Challenging Colonial Spaces: Reconciliation and Decolonizing Work in Canadian Archives.” Canadian Historical Review 100.2 (June 2019): 182–201. 

“Payment for Interviews.” H-Net H-OralHist, May 2015. 

Sharpe, Christina. In the Wake: On Blackness and Being (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2016): 2, 4.

Sheftel, Anna and Stacey Zembrzycki. “Who’s Afraid of Oral History?: Fifty Years of Debates and Anxiety about Ethics.” Oral History Review 43.2 (September 21, 2016): 338–66.

Simpson, Audra. Mohawk Interruptus: Political Life Across the Borders of Settler States (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2014) 

Smith, Linda Tuhiwai. Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples (London: Zed Books, 2012) 

Srigley, Katrina, Stacey Zembrzycki, and Franca Iacovetta, eds. Beyond Women's Words : Feminisms and the Practices of Oral History in the Twenty-First Century. (Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge, 2018) 

Stoler, Ann Laura. “Colonial Archives and the Arts of Governance.” Archival Science 2.1–2 (2002): 87–109. 

Taylor, Keeanga-Yamahtta. "The Black Plague." The New Yorker. April 16, 2020.

Washington, Harriett. Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present (New York: Anchor, 2008) 

Weir, Kirsten. “Grief and COVID-19: Mourning Our Bygone Lives.” American Psychological Association, April 1, 2020. 

Rapid Response Collecting