I’ve been working on some oral histories of projects I’ve been involved with, beginning with the Newton Family Singers.
The intention of the oral histories is to present information about a group using voices from that group — in their own words, but also cleaned up somewhat and ordered for best presentation. The tone of each oral history will be determined by each subject, but don’t think of it as a stuffy lecture — consider it more like listening in to a roundtable discussion among friends.
What would the oral history be used for?
- institutional memory for members of the group
- marketing for people wanting to learn about the group
- a chance to examine an institution “from within”
Who could use an oral history?
- non-profit organizations that want to maintain their mission in their founders’ voice
- growing businesses who want to get new employees up to speed on the corporate culture quickly, or to present to potential clients and partners
- families or other social groups who want to memorialize an anniversary or occasion differently than just a few photos
Why an oral history?
- the written word is the advance that catapulted mankind into civilization
- videos and podcasts take time to listen to — and don’t allow audiences to skip ahead to sections relevant to their needs
- nothing is more historical than a physical book (although ebooks and .pdfs are easy and inexpensive to distribute)
If you think you might be interested in creating an oral history for your organization, business, family or social circle, please get in touch through the Contact page