Doing Oral History

Doing Oral History : A Practical Guide

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Doing Oral History: A Practical Guide is considered the premier guidebook to oral history, used by professional oral historians, public historians, archivists, and genealogists as a core text in college courses and throughout the public history community. Over the past decades, the development of digital audio and video recording technology has continued to alter the practice of oral history, making it even easier to produce quality recordings and to disseminate them on the Internet. This basic manual offers detailed advice on setting up an oral history project, conducting interviews, making video recordings, preserving oral history collections in archives and libraries, and teaching and presenting oral history. Using the existing Q&A format, the third edition asks new questions and augments previous answers with new material, particularly in these areas: 1. Technology: As before, the book avoids recommending specific equipment, but weighs the merits of the types of technology available for audio and video recording, transcription, preservation, and dissemination. Information about web sites is expanded, and more discussion is provided about how other oral history projects have posted their interviews online. 2. Teaching: The new edition addresses the use of oral history in online teaching. It also expands the discussion of Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) with the latest information about compliance issues. 3. Presentation: Once interviews have been conducted, there are many opportunities for creative presentation. There is much new material available on innovative forms of presentation developed over the last decade, including interpretive dance and other public performances. 4. Legal considerations: The recent Boston College case, in which the courts have ruled that Irish police should have access to sealed oral history transcripts, has re-focused attention on the problems of protecting donor restrictions. The new edition offers case studies from the past decade. 5. Theory and Memory: As a beginner's manual, Doing Oral History has not dealt extensively with theoretical issues, on the grounds that these emerge best from practice. But the third edition includes the latest thinking about memory and provides a sample of some of the theoretical issues surrounding oral sources. It will include examples of increased studies into catastrophe and trauma, and the special considerations these have generated for interviewers. 6. Internationalism: Perhaps the biggest development in the past decade has been the spreading of oral history around the world, facilitated in part by the International Oral History Association. New oral history projects have developed in areas that have undergone social and political upheavals, where the traditional archives reflect the old regimes, particularly in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. The third edition includes many more references to non-U.S. projects that will still be relevant to an American audience. These changes make the third edition of Doing Oral History an even more useful tool for beginners, teachers, archivists, and all those oral history managers who have inherited older collections that must be converted to the latest more

Product details

  • Paperback | 368 pages
  • 154.94 x 233.68 x 25.4mm | 504.99g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised
  • 3rd Revised edition
  • 0199329338
  • 9780199329335
  • 609,898

About Donald A. Ritchie

Historian, U.S. Senate Historical Office; past president, Oral History Association; editor, The Oxford Handbook of Oral History; author, Press Gallery: Congress and the Washington Correspondents (Harvard U. Press, 1991, OAH Richard Leopold Prize), Reporting from Washington (OUP, 2005), et more

Review quote

The third edition of Doing Oral History presents a wealth of information in a readable and inviting form ... a welcome update to a classic publication. * Barbara W. Sommer, Oral History Review * offers a practical overview of the nuts and bolts of doing oral history, from setting up a project and conducting interviews to its uses in research and writing ... Ritchie's depth of experience and straightforward approach anticipate the vast majority of questions likely to be asked by those embarking on oral history projects. * Gail Dubrow, American Historical Review * [A] comprehensive and up-to-date overview of the art of oral history. * Oral History in New Zealand * A comprehensive handbook on the theory, methods, and practice of oral history, based on work by the Oral History Association to revise its professional standards and principles. * Book News, Inc. * A definitive guide that provides all the practical advice and explanations needed to turn your ideas and goals into action and to create recordings that illuminate the human experience for generations to come. Definitely recommended. * The Ultimate Puzzle: Family Research * [An] all-purpose guide to the entire range of the oral history process...this volume provides extensive background on oral history and its relation to the larger realm of historical inquiry, discusses how oral history interviewing compares with journalistic and other interviewing techniques, and considers the workings of the human memory. * American Archivist * Simple, straightforward, and effective. ... [A] stimulating and formidable is indeed a guide to practice, but it is much more: it is a stepping-off point to the increasingly large universe that oral history pracititioners occupy. * Oral History Review * [The] standard work for many years to come. * Public Historian * This book is not a dustcatcher. It is destined to be dog-eared and full of underlined passages, from the first time you pick it up. In a user-friendly question-and-answer format, much like an oral history interview, Don Ritchie has packed into one modest volume enough practical advice to get an oral history project off the ground, help a novice oral historian conduct a responsible interview, and challenge more experienced oral historians, librarians, and archivists who might use oral history to think broadly about the impact of what they are doing. * Mid-Atlantic Archivist * Ritchie has laid out the fundamentals to guide novices and given long-term practitioners material that will help them re-evaluate their own approaches. This book needs to be on every oral historian's shelf. * Northwest Oral History Association * Written in a friendly question-and-answer format, this book gives advice for preparing, setting up, and conducting an interview. ... Ritchie's step-by-step guide will help you preserve your family's experiences for generations to come. * Family Tree * Donald Ritchie...has produced an invaluable manual that will serve research scholars and teachers equally well. ... Without pretension, Doing Oral History fulfills the promise touted on the jacket cover: to provide 'practical advice and reasonable explanations for anyone.' ... [A] significant contribution to making oral history accessible to a wide audience of potential users. * The History Teacher *show more

Table of contents

Introduction and Acknowledgments ; Chapter 1. An Oral History of Our Time ; Memory and Oral History ; Public History and Oral History ; Chapter 2. Setting Up An Oral History Project ; Funding and Staffing ; Equipment ; Processing ; Legal Concerns ; Archiving and the Internet ; Chapter 3. Conducting Interviews ; Preparing for the Interview ; Setting up the Interview ; Conducting the Interview ; Concluding the Interview ; Chapter 4. Using Oral History for Research ; Oral Evidence ; Theory ; Publishing Oral History ; Chapter 5. Videotaping Oral History ; Setting and Equipment ; Processing and Preserving Video Recordings ; Video Documentaries, Exhibits, and the Internet ; Chapter 6. Preserving Oral History in Archives and Libraries ; Managing Oral History Collections ; Sound Recordings ; Digital Oral Archives ; Donated Interviews ; Legal Considerations ; Public Outreach ; Chapter 7. Teaching Oral History ; Oral History in Elementary and Secondary Schools ; Oral History in Undergraduate and Graduate Education ; Institutional Review Boards ; Chapter 8. Presenting Oral History ; Oral History Web Sites ; Community History ; Family Interviewing ; Therapeutic Uses of Oral History ; Museum Exhibits ; Radio and Television ; Performance ; Appendix 1: Best Practices of the Oral History Association. ; Appendix 2: Sample Legal Release Forms ; Notes and References ; Bibliography ; Internet Resources ; Indexshow more

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96 ratings
3.61 out of 5 stars
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3 36% (35)
2 9% (9)
1 1% (1)
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