Oregon State University

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Event Details

LFA Seminar Series

Beth Filar Williams; Uta Hussong-Christian

Friday, June 9, 2017 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Boswellizing OSU: On the Attempt to Create an Oral History of a Large Place

Chris Peterson
Senior Faculty Research Assistant

Abstract:  The Oregon State University Sesquicentennial Oral History Project is the largest oral history initiative ever undertaken at OSU. Spanning more than four years, the project has captured the stories of over 100 OSU alumni from every decade since the 1930s; more than 100 faculty members representing each of OSU’s eleven colleges; some twenty OSU staff members; and another dozen current students. Project staff have collected more than 330 hours of interview content, and the dedicated web portal created to present “OH 150” contains more than 3.1 million words of transcription.

This presentation will tell the story of why the project came into being and how it evolved over time. In addition to a detailed discussion of who was interviewed and the major themes that arose as a result, the presentation will touch upon the tools that project staff used to create the collection’s unique web portal, which features access to video and audio files, contextual information, transcripts presented in two different formats, and the ability to sort interviews based on affiliation or topic.

The talk will also feature two films compiled from the collection: one serving as a demonstration for how the project might be used for research purposes, and the other highlighting several funny, poignant or especially insightful moments that emerged as a result of the interviewing process.

Valley Library (campus map)
Willamette East & West Seminar Rooms
Victoria Heiduschke
1 541 737 7275
victoria at oregonstate.edu