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Michael Gillette on Lady Bird Johnson and oral history

This episode of the OHR on OUPblog, I take the opportunity to interview Michael Gillette, author of Lady Bird Johnson: An Oral History. In this podcast, Gillette discusses the book, the research behind and process of interviewing “Mrs. Johnson,” and his current role as executive director of Humanities Texas. Our host, Oxford University Press, published Lady Bird Johnson at the end of last year.

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Christmas at the White House

Today would have been Lady Bird Johnson’s 100th birthday. In honor of her and the season, we wanted to share one of Lady Bird’s Christmas recollections, as told to Michael Gillette in Lady Bird Johnson: An Oral History.

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Launching a war on poverty

By Michael L. Gillette
Fifty years ago on the eighth of January, President Lyndon Johnson declared unconditional war on poverty. In his first State of the Union Address, LBJ outlined his offensive, a sweeping domestic agenda that would become known as the Great Society: Medicare, federal aid to education, an expanded food stamp program, extended minimum wage coverage…

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Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington

The 28th of August 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, one of the largest political rallies in US History for African American civil rights. Between 200,000 and 300,000 participants marched from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial demanding meaningful civil and economic rights. At the Lincoln Memorial, Dr. Martin Luther […]

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Blogging oral history

It’s been six months since we at Oral History Review (OHR) started blogging regularly at the OUPblog, so we think now is a good time to look back on the last few months. We’ve discussed everything from the historiography of oral history to the challenges of recording interviews on recent history, and we’ve approached these issues with essays, q&as, timelines, quizzes, and podcasts.

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The War on Poverty

Launching the War on Poverty: An Oral History, pieces together oral history interviews with former president Lyndon B. Johnson and his team of advisers as they undertook the Great Society’s greatest challenge. This excerpt is taken from an interview with Robert J. Lampman, a staff member of the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) from 1962 to 1963 who worked in the Kennedy Administration along with Walter Heller, chairman of the CEA. The Saturday Group, called so because of their Saturday “brown bag” lunches, would meet informally (at first) to discuss how they could approach the problem of poverty and solutions that could be brought about with assistance from the government. Their luncheons were the beginnings of a social movement that would become pivotal in giving assistance where it was needed. Their work is still seen today, in the forms of public assistance that we once never had an option of choosing when survival was the only thing that was of importance.

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