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Oral History Circle VIII

Editor: Meghan Julian

Oral historians past and present gather with Professor Myrna Frommer.

April 21st, 2006 was a grey, drizzly day, but the weather couldn't cast a damper on the spirits of the oral historians gathered together with their teachers and friends in the 1930s Room in the Rockefeller Building on campus.  Missy Shea brought fresh bagels all the way from New Jersey - they were avidly consumed, along with all the other goodies brought for the Oral History Circle IX.  


From left to right:  Missy Shea, Jerry LaMothe, and Amanda Silva.


The group listens to a story about Life After MALS 191.

Maria Graham gave a recap of her popular thesis, an oral history of two convents in Ireland.  Jerry LaMothe, a regular attendee of the Oral History Circle, drove down from North Danville, Vermont, to share details of his journey.  You could tell he'd caught the attention of everyone present when he mentioned that not only has he sold dozens of copies of his thesis, but that his history of his hometown has sparked interest in all its residents, fueling community-wide historical projects.  It's proof- positive that the work a MALS student does can have an impact beyond the degree.  

Dolapo Neil spoke briefly about her investigation into the importance of orality in the Nigerian Yoruba culture.  She made it plain that oral history projects are not always simply spoken interviews - theses can be multidisciplinary, as hers was, when, out of necessity, her African sources were interviewed via e-mail.  Nermina Zildzo also spoke about her interest in oral history, and her tentative plans to become involved in the burgeoning oral history movement in her native Bosnia.  Kristen Getchell finished up the extemporaneous presentations with her observations on the twists and turns an oral history can take from its inception to its conclusion.


Maria Graham and her daughter with Amanda Silva.

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