Collective memory and oral tradition: Explorations and Interpretations

Dep Batziou 's picture
December 5, 2020
Subject Fields: 
Oral History, Area Studies, Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies, Local History, Psychology

Collective memory and oral tradition: Explorations and Interpretations
International Conference

Thematic Approach

GIRES is committed to creating a welcoming space for discussion, collaboration, and exploration of oral history’s potential as a tool for local, national, and international projects that would enrich and even revise chapters of history. 

Our new international conference seeks to promote the importance of oral history as a valuable and unique source of information. For decades, oral history was considered less than scholarly, leading to its exclusion from several history books; thus valuable first-hand experiences and information that could alter historical truth were neglected and ultimately lost to oblivion. We wish to challenge the pervading view that oral testimony can lead to false representation of historical events; and underline the significant support they can provide to historical research, especially in lieu of written documentation. 

We also hope to focus on the connections between oral history, collective memory, and individual memory. Whether from a historical, social, or even psychological approach we wish to engage scholars in a multidimensional and interdisciplinary approach in order to deeply explore all aspects of this valuable and fascinating discipline. 

We invite scholars from different fields including history, philosophy, religion, sociology, international relations, literature, art, space studies, peace studies, cultural studies, minority studies, war and/or genocide studies, journalism, immigration studies, psychology and psychiatry, political and social studies, and those working in archives, museums and NGOs. 

Proposed Topics

-Oral history throughout history 

-Oral historian: a public historian? Oral history as a form of social and communal activity;

-Conducting oral history research: Methodologies and techniques 

-Re-examining and re-writing history through the lens of oral history

-Epistemological and ethical dilemmas in oral history

-Collective/Individual memory and oral tradition 

-Manipulation of memory and the role of oral history

-Oral history and trauma

-Oral history as a tool of revealing/reliving a dictatorship/suppressing regime

-Altering, exaggerating or forgetting memories; the psychology of a survivor

-Oral history in teaching and teaching oral history 


Proposed Formats (Lingua franca: English)

Submissions may propose various formats, including:

*Individually submitted papers (organized into panels by the  GIRES committee)

* Panels (3-4 individual papers)

* Roundtable discussions (led by one of the presenters)

* Posters

Our proposed topics & formats are not restrictive and we invite additional germane ideas

Due to the restrictions of Corona Crisis our event (for the time being) will take place virtually

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