Oral History, Part I: Methods and Mistakes

Seminar, in English, Shaughnessy House, 4 July, 6pm
Oral History, Part I: Methods and Mistakes

Janina Gosseye and Naomi Stead raise questions and discuss cases from their own work gathering oral histories, including for a project on female architects in Australia. Their forthcoming book Speaking of Buildings, edited with Deborah van der Plaat, considers through its four chapters questions of “Constructing History,” “Restituting History,” “Disrupting History,” and “The Unspoken and the Unspeakable.” One of the book’s authors, Thomas-Bernard Kenniff, will also be present to discuss his contribution, which centres on interviews with those affected by the development of Montreal’s Place des Festivals.

Janina Gosseye is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Queensland School of Architecture. Naomi Stead is Professor of Architecture in the Department of Architecture at Monash University. Thomas-Bernard Kenniff is Professor in the Environmental Design program at the École de design, Université du Québec à Montréal.

Toolkit invites scholars to reveal their tools and reflect on them in a convivial atmosphere. The 2017 Toolkit for Today seminar, “Oral History,” will consider the potential and challenges of oral history as methodology and its use for historians and critics as a source of information or as a way to collect evidence that is otherwise difficult to document. This seminar, like its counterpart on 7 July, is a moment when the week-long discussion surfaces in public.

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