Spring 2017: Oral Histories: Preserving Stories


Spring 2017: Oral Histories: Preserving Stories


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Saturday, May 13, 2017
9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Class takes place at Literary Arts, 925 SW Washington.

Oral history starts with finding a story that needs to be told. Then comes recording, listening, clarifying, and following up. You’ll need to transcribe, possibly even translate, and then turn that raw transcript into a readable story, maintaining the speaker’s voice and getting the details right.

Two oral history practitioners will talk about the history of the form, from Studs Turkel to Legs McNeil, and the process of collecting and editing oral histories that need to be preserved. We’ll look at original transcripts and how they were edited into published stories, develop a list of stories to be recorded, and practice interviewin

Evan Lyon is a physician, advocate, researcher, and author on health and human rights. He is coeditor for Lavil: Live, Love, and Death in Port-au-Prince (Verso 2017). He is on the board of the Human Rights Program at the University of Chicago and is a contributing editor at the academic journal Health and Human Rights. He has collaborated with Partners In Health (www.pih.org) in Haiti and at other sites for more than eighteen years. 

Laura Lampton Scott’s work has appeared in or is forthcoming from Michigan Quarterly Review, Monkeybicycle, Okey-Panky, and No Tokens Journal. She is the Senior Associate Editor for Lavil: Life, Love, and Death in Port-au-Prince (Verso 2017), and she is a MacDowell Colony fellow.