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Oral history through Google Glass

It was late in the day when a nondescript package arrived at my office. After carefully opening the box and lifting off the lid, there it was: Google Glass. And yes, it was awesome. Initially, the technology geek in me was overjoyed, but the oral historian soon took over as I raced through potential uses for this wearable technology in my daily work.

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A Q&A with Peipei Qiu on Chinese comfort women

Issues concerning Imperial Japan’s wartime “comfort women” have ignited international debates in the past two decades, and a number of personal accounts of “comfort women” have been published in English since the 1990s. Until recently, however, there has been a notable lack of information about the women drafted from Mainland China. Chinese Comfort Women is the first book in English to record the first-hand experiences of twelve Chinese women who were forced into sexual slavery by Japanese Imperial forces during the Asia-Pacific War (1931-1945).

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Welcome to the OHR, Stephanie Gilmore

By Caitlin Tyler-Richards
This summer, our editor-in-chief Kathy Nasstrom is taking a well-deserved break, and leaving the Oral History Review and related cat-herding in the hands of the extremely capable Stephanie Gilmore. As some may have read in the Oral History Association’s most recent newsletter, Stephanie is a multitalented historian who works to combat sexual assault on university campuses.

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‘Storytelling’ in oral history: an exchange, part 2

On 25 April, we shared an excerpt from the conversation between OHR 41.1 contributor Alexander Freund and OHR board member Erin Jessee regarding Freund’s article, “Confessing Animals: Towards a Longue Durée History of the Oral History Interview”. Below, Freund and Jessee continue their exchange, tackling storytelling in non-Western arenas.

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Crowdfunding for oral history projects

By Shanna Farrell
The cocktail is an American invention and was defined in 1806 as “a stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters.” Cocktail culture took root on the West Coast around the Gold Rush; access to a specific set of spirits and ingredients dictated by trade roots, geography, and agriculture helped shape the West Coast cocktail in particular.

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‘Storytelling’ in oral history: an exchange

Silence, interrogation, confession, chronology, and stories. The Oral History Review (OHR) Volume 41, Issue 1 is now online and coming to mailboxes soon, and along with it Alexander Freund’s article, “Confessing Animals”: Toward a Longue Durée History of the Oral History Interview.”OHR Editorial Board Member Erin Jessee spoke with the University of Winnipeg professor over his novel approach to the oral history interview.

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Trauma happens, so what can we do about it?

By Carolyn Lunsford Mears, Ph.D.
Fifteen years ago, 20 April 1999, it happened in my community… at my son’s school. Two heavily armed seniors launched a deadly attack on fellow students, teachers, and staff at Columbine High School in Jefferson County, Colorado.

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A call for oral history bloggers

By Caitlin Tyler-Richards
Over the past few months, the Oral History Review has become rather demanding. In February, we asked readers to experiment with the short form article. A few weeks ago, our upcoming interim editor Dr. Stephanie Gilmore sent out a call for papers for our special Winter/Spring 2016 issue, “Listening to and for LGBTQ Lives.” Now, we’d like you to also take over our OUPBlog posting duties.

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Oral history, collective memory, and community among cloistered nuns

By Caitlin Tyler-Richards
This week, managing editor Troy Reeves speaks with scholar and artist Abbie Reese about her recently published book, Dedicated to God: An Oral History of Cloistered Nuns. Through an exquisite blend of oral and visual narratives, Reese shares the stories of the Poor Clare Colettine Order, a multigenerational group of cloistered contemplative nuns living in Rockford, Illinois.

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Threshold Collaborative: a lesson in engaged story work

By Alisa Del Tufo
Stories are powerful ways to bring the voice and ideas of marginalized people into endeavors to restore justice and enact change. Beginning in the early 1990s, I started using oral history to bring the stories and experiences of abused women into efforts to make policy changes in New York City.

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The Oral History Review at the OHA Midwinter Meeting

By Troy Reeves
I had the pleasure of participating in certain parts of the Oral History Association’s Midwinter Meeting, held 14-16 February 2014 in Madison, Wisconsin. Let’s get this question answered right off the bat: Why Wisconsin in February? Because the organization meets in the winter (or early spring) at the location of the upcoming meeting.

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Contradictions in Cold War-era higher education

By Caitlin Tyler-Richards
This week, managing editor Troy Reeves wears his Badgers pride proudly in an interview with historian Matthew Levin. Levin, who received his PhD in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is the author of Cold War University: Madison and the New Left in the Sixties (UW Press, 2013).

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Oral History Review’s Short Form Initiative

By Caitlin Tyler-Richards
On behalf of the Oral History Review editorial staff, I am excited to publicly announce the journal’s latest project: the short form initiative. What is this? (I imagine everyone wondering aloud with feigned nonchalance.) Well, while the typical OHR article tends to fall between 8,000 to 12,000 words, we are now actively seeking substantially shorter submissions — approximately 3,000-4,000 words in length.

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International Holocaust Remembrance Day reading list

To mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day, we present a reading list of books and articles that look at all aspects of Holocaust scholarship, including remarkable stories those who risked their lives to save Jews, post-Holocaust Jewish theological responses, and the challenges of recording oral histories.

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The real Llewyn Davis

By David King Dunaway
In the late 1950s, Dave Van Ronk was walking through Washington Square Park in New York’s Greenwich Village on a Sunday afternoon. This Trotskyist-leaning jazz enthusiast from Queens thought the crowds huddled around guitars and banjos “irredeemably square.”

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