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Introduction to Oral History: Home

This LibGuide will provide information and resources for the practice of oral history.


What is Oral History?

Oral history is an effort to capture experiences which have, in many cases, been left out of the traditional historical record. As articulated in the Principles for Oral History and Best Practices for Oral History (Oral History Association, 2009) "oral history refers both to a method of recording and preserving oral testimony and to the product of that process. It begins with an audio or video recording of a first person account made by an interviewer with an interviewee (also referred to as narrator), both of whom have the conscious intention of creating a permanent record to contribute to an understanding of the past. A verbal document, the oral history, results from this process and is preserved and made available in different forms to other users, researchers, and the public. A critical approach to the oral testimony and interpretations are necessary in the use of oral history."


Director, Special Collections & Archives

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Tanya Zanish-Belcher
Director, Special Collections & Archives
Liaison-Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Rm. 625, PO Box 7777
Z. Smith Reynolds Library
Winston-Salem, NC