CCOHR Contact & People

The Columbia Center for Oral History-Research is directed by Mary Marshall Clark.

CCOHR Staff

To learn more about the Columbia Center for Oral History contact ccohr@columbia.edu.

CCOHR Active Projects

Each summer in New York City, CCOHR sponsors an annual Summer Institute, which brings together oral historians, scholars, activists, and others for two weeks of advanced training in the theory and practice of oral history. Participants work with world-class instructors, network with oral historians from around the world and go to exhibits in New York City. Each year we focus on a different theme.

The 2014 Deadline Has Passed

The Center for Oral History Research/INCITE (Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics) is pleased to announce its 2014 Oral History Institute, “Second Generation Memories and Stories,” to be held June 16-27, 2014 at Columbia University in New York City. The program will explore the ways in which memories are formed and transmitted through family, cultural, political and social frames and experiences. Other areas of exploration will include how communities are reshaped and strengthened by oral traditions of telling stories about the past. Oral history has been a central methodology in exploring global themes of identity and post-memory through second-generation stories of immigration, migration, poverty, trauma and genocide, displacement and exile. Oral history also provides a setting for intimate exchanges between families, communities and cultures in a way that preserves and secures local and indigenous knowledge across generations, cultures and ethnicities: engendering individual and social resilience.

We encourage applicants to use the Institute to explore a broad range of applications of second-generation oral history research in contemporary contexts and fields including public health and medicine, immigration studies (including the impact of post-9/11 US policies on immigrant communities), sociology and social science more generally. The program will include presentations on how scholars, museums and memorials have used second-generation oral histories, and testimony, in ways that are crucial to illuminating forgotten or misunderstood experiences. The Institute will also include practical workshops in digital storytelling, interviewing and editing.

APPLICATION DUE: The 2014 Deadline Has Passed

Note on Tuition and Housing Fee: Tuition for the Institute is $2,200. There may be additional fees for field trips. You may arrange your own housing or take advantage of low-cost on-campus housing for approximately $75-85/night. Limited fellowships are available.

Core faculty will include:

Mary Marshall Clark, Director of the Columbia Center for Oral History Research and co-director of the Oral History Master of Arts Program at the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics of Columbia University;

• Ron Chew, Principal at Chew Communications and former executive director of the Wing Luke Asian Museum;

Peter Bearman, Director of the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics and co-director of the Oral History Master of Arts Program;

Doug Boyd, Director of the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History at the University of Kentucky Libraries;

Alessandro Portelli, Professor of Anglo-American Literature at the University of Rome-La Sapienza;

Amy Starecheski, Associate Director of the Oral History Master of Arts Program at the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics of Columbia University;

Ronald J. Grele, Director Emeritus of the Columbia Center for Oral History;

Linda Shopes, Former President of the U.S. Oral History Association, Freelance Editor and Consultant in Oral and Public History.

CCOH staff, students from the Oral History Master of Arts Program (OHMA), and others who have worked in the archive will enrich our discussions with their interpretations.

 

PAST 10 SUMMER INSTITUTES

2013, Telling the World: Indigenous Memories, Rights, and Narratives
This year’s institute explored the political, cultural, psychological, ethical and personal dimensions of documenting urban injury and recovery.

2012What is Remembered: Life Story Approaches in Human Rights Contexts
This year’s institute s explored the methodological and theoretical implications of doing life story research with individuals who have suffered human rights abuses and other forms of discrimination. 

2011Rethinking 9/11: Life Stories, Cultural Memory and the Politics of Representation
This year’s institute s explored the political, cultural, psychological, ethical and personal dimensions of documenting urban injury and recovery.

2010, Oral History from the Ground Up: Space, Place, Memory.
This year’s institute examined the meaning that space, place and memory hold in producing individual, social, cultural and political narratives.

2009, Narrating the Body: Oral History, Narrative and Embodied Practice
This year’s program explored issues, stories and performances tracing the history of the body, as well as oral history as an embodied practice.

2008, Oral History, Advocacy and the Law
This year’s program explored the parallel uses of oral history and legal testimony in the classical definition of advocacy as “finding and giving” voice, and looked at human rights commissions, tribunals and oral history documentation.

2007Telling the World: Oral History, Struggles for Justice and Human Rights Dialogues
This year’s program explored how oral history theory and method contribute to an understanding of the political, historical and personal dimensions of human rights dialogues. Joining us in the creation of this year’s program was the International Center for Transitional Justice.

2006, Women's Narratives, Women's Lives: Intersections of Gender and Memory
This year’s program featured presentations on such topics of gender and memory in illness and activist narratives.

2005, Living to Tell: Narrating Catastrophe through Oral History
This year’s program focused on the challenges of using oral history to document catastrophe in its immediate aftermath and beyond.

2004, Constructions of Race and Ethnicity from Past to Present: Negotiating Collective Memories through Oral History
This year’s program focused on the role of oral history in creating and critiquing representations of race and ethnicity in collective memory, popular culture and individual life narratives.