Oral History

Conference Circuit: Oral History in the 21st Century

Learn how an association dedicated to preserving oral history is adjusting to the digital age. Plus: Female surgeons celebrate the best in their field.

Next week in Madison, Wisconsin, the Oral History Association will gather for its annual meeting, setting an example for how a long-standing organization can transition into the modern era.

“The digital revolution has ushered in myriad new possibilities in the collection, curation, presentation, and interpretation of oral history interviews, with complex consequences and implications,” OHA states on its web page for the event, to be held October 8-12.

So it comes as no surprise that the agenda includes many workshops focused on adapting to the digital revolution, from “Enhancing Access to Oral History Online” to “Transitioning to Video Oral History.” Projects like the much-celebrated StoryCorps show just how valuable oral history remains to preserving the stories of our lives.

OHA is asking attendees this question: “What is the relationship between scholarship and advocacy, between history and journalism, between personal memories and collective consciousness, among diverse social movements?”

That’s actually a series of questions, and they may take more than a single annual conference to sort out. So keep track of the #OHA2014 hashtag, and maybe read some of the attendees’ tweets aloud, to honor oral tradition.

The Week Ahead

October 4: The first collision industry exposition heads to Salt Lake Community College in Utah this weekend, with more than 50 vendors taking part in the inaugural event. “The Utah Auto Body Association is working to bring more education and training to Utah, and we’re proud to bring this high level of education, training and networking to the collision industry. We have to be prepared for what is coming, and now is the time to do it,” UABA Vice President Cary Robarge said in a statement.

October 6-9: Didn’t get enough passionate discussion about urban spaces and populations from last week’s Meeting of the Minds conference? Then the International Downtown Association’s 59th annual conference in New York City is for you. The conference aims to provide a forum for examining how urban leaders “have transformed buildings, places, and streets through design, redevelopment, place management, and distinctive programming that reflect the unique attributes of their cities.”

Down the Line

October 26-30: The American College of Surgeons’ Clinical Congress has long hosted the best in surgical education. Alongside this year’s event in San Francisco, rich in educational sessions and exhibits, is the Association of Women Surgeons’ Annual Conference, which has been providing female surgical leaders with their own forum and awards since 1981. More details are available on the AWS conference site.

(Janka Dharmasena/ThinkStock)

Morgan Little

By Morgan Little

Morgan Little is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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