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Digital Documentation of Oral History Research is Workshop Topic, Sept. 20


JONESBORO – Arkansas State University will host a workshop on documenting and presenting local history and culture on Friday, Sept. 20.  Dr. Barbara Truesdell of Indiana University and Dr. Douglas Boyd of the University of Kentucky will lead the workshop, which begins at 8 a.m. in the Mockingbird Room of the Carl R. Reng Student Union.

The focus will be on methods used in oral history research, and the event is open to the public.  There is no fee, but participants are asked to register by contacting Dr. Gregory Hansen, professor of English and folklore, ghansen@astate.edu, (870) 972-3043.

Participants will learn how to select and use digital equipment and ways to adapt archival holdings to public presentation.  The workshop will benefit anyone engaged in documenting historical and cultural resources, and it is especially oriented toward those who conduct research in historical societies and other organizations with archival holdings.

Dr. Truesdell is assistant director of the Center for the Study of History and Memory at Indiana University, formerly the Oral History Research Center.  She administers all aspects of the Center's research projects and its extensive archive of oral history interviews dating back to its founding in 1968. 

She received her Ph.D. from Indiana University in folklore and American studies in 1996.  She has been doing fieldwork since 1985, and since 1992 has been conducting oral history training workshops for students, researchers, and community groups, including workshops in St. Petersburg, Russia, and Cluj, Romania.

Dr. Boyd is director of the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History at the University of Kentucky.  Most recently, Dr. Boyd led the team that envisioned, designed and implemented the open source OHMS system that synchronizes text with audio and video online, and he is currently completing the design and implementation on an open source, online oral history collection management database system.

His recent publications include the article “Horses and Hoops: New Approaches to Oral History in a Digital Environment,” as well as “Achieving the Promise of Oral History in a Digital Age,” a chapter in The Oxford Handbook to Oral History (Oxford University Press).

Boyd also is the author of the new book “Crawfish Bottom:  Recovering a Lost Kentucky Community” which was published by the University Press of Kentucky.  He will present a book talk and signing Thursday, Sept. 19, at 4 p.m.  This event will be held at the Multicultural Center in the Reng Student Union.  More details about Boyd’s book talk are available here.

Both events are free and open to the community and are supported by the Heritage Studies Program, Department of English and Philosophy, and a grant from the American Folklore Society.

This and other educational opportunities are offered at Arkansas State as part of its mission to educate leaders, enhance intellectual growth and enrich lives.

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