Summer Courses | Rutgers University

360 Core Topics in US History: Oral History: Storytelling as Resistance

Core Topics in US History: Oral History Storytelling as Resistance (21:512:360:B7:03936)
Class Dates: 5/31 - 7/7
Class Times: TTh, 6:00pm - 9:30pm
Instructor: Scorsone
Location: Canvas
Format: Remote
Credits: 3

How can storytelling be a tool of resistance? In this course, we will explore how oral history is a method used by historians to fill in archival gaps and silences that have failed to include the history of marginalized individuals and communities. Oral history projects that capture the stories of marginalized people are an important key to understanding complex issues of oppression, strategies of resistance, and dynamics of power over time. Not only does it allow historians to ask new questions about the past, scholars and activists can also use oral history to study issues and advocate for societal change based on insights learned through oral history interviews.

The Queer Newark Oral History Project (QNOHP) at Rutgers-Newark is a community-driven project that collects and preserves the life stories of LGBTQ people in and of Newark by conducting audio interviews that are recorded and made publicly accessible on the QNOHP website. Using QNOHP as our main model, we will use historical analysis and queer and feminist theory as frameworks to think critically about oral histories and public humanities projects. We will also go over skills for conducting interviews and creating transcripts, how to build projects in partnership with local communities, and how to put oral histories into action as other types of public history projects.


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