Field Notes
March 2016
From the Acting Director
Welcome back!

This past week, SOHP team members Rachel Seidman, Jaycie Vos, and I met up with our podcasting consultant, Susan Davis of Better Broadcasts, to spend part of our spring break in Baltimore, MD. We attended the annual meeting of the National Council on Public History, where we presented a session titled "Listen Up: Podcasts for Pedagogy and Public History." The session focused on SOHP's experiences and experiments inside and beyond the classroom that have guided our journey toward our podcast, PRESS RECORD.

We spent the first half of the session discussing the ways in which podcasting serves as a tool to help us achieve our mission. One way it does so is by introducing broader publics to materials in our impressive archive through theme-based curated conversations that forefront clips from our collection. Another is by giving graduate and undergraduate oral history students an opportunity to learn new skills that require their analysis, creativity, and critical listening. A third is by giving SOHP an opportunity to share tips and strategies from the field with an audience interested in the ethics and methods of oral history research.
During the second half of our session, we encouraged participants to work in small groups with a form provided by Susan, in order to brainstorm podcast ideas that might be useful for their organizational or individual research projects. One representative from each group then presented a two-minute "Shark Tank-style" pitch to the panel. Judging from their enthusiasm, the range of thoughtful ideas they presented, and their feedback, the audience found this to be a productive exercise. Additionally, we all benefited from the wisdom Susan shared given her extensive experience with podcast architecture and production. At one point, I found myself smiling as I listened to Rachel discuss the process of producing PRESS RECORD. Just a few months ago, making an SOHP podcast was just an idea. Now, it is a process that has produced three episodes and has included each of our graduate student field scholars. I looked across the table with pride at the brilliant and bold women I get to work with.
As Women's History Month comes to a close, you can now PRESS RECORD to hear our latest episode focused on feminism and oral history. Thanks for joining us in this productive journey.

--Renée Alexander Craft 
From the SOHP Workroom

This piece was written by SOHP Communications Intern MaKayla Leak

If you are wondering what the SOHP interns are up to, we just completed our first round of oral history interviews! The SOHP Spring 2016 interns are continuing the program's project on collecting the stories of the UNC Black Pioneers. We are all so thankful to be a part of this project. While talking with my fellow interns about their first interview experiences, Charlotte and Kadejah expressed both their shortcomings and successes. Charlotte mentioned her goal of crafting better questions for her next interviewee so that they are more open-ended. This is a skill that our wonderful mentor, Taylor, has promised will get easier with time. Charlotte went on to say that "this project helps highlight how severe racism was on our campus. This severity makes us realize that it would not just disappear and it is still an open wound for both the people we are interviewing and for others on campus." Kadejah's first interview enlightened her of "contributions and struggles that the Black Pioneers faced in order for other individuals to have the privilege to come here." Interning with SOHP has helped us shed light on a perspective of history that was once not seen as valid. We are excited to tackle our second interviews and continue to help bring these valuable and imperative oral histories to life.
Telling Our Stories of Home
SOHP is excited to co-sponsor the upcoming conference festival "Telling Our Stories of Home: Exploring and Celebrating Changing African and African-Diaspora Communities." Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, this celebration will host over 25 brilliant national and international artists, scholars, and activists at UNC over the course of a 6-day conference. Events will include collaborative panel discussions, storytelling, a film series, and the reading of a play commissioned for the event, Torn Asunder, which was produced from the scholarly text, Help Me to Find My People. To learn more about the event, visit the website here. We hope to see you there!

Interested in getting involved? Telling Our Stories of Home (TOSH) is recruiting volunteers to help with the various events throughout the conference, including stage & sound assistance and craft demonstrations & activities. Contact Kat at for more information! 
Press Record Episode 3: "Feminism and Oral History"

The third episode of the SOHP podcast, Press Record, went live on Friday! In honor of Women's History Month, our third episode is all about oral history, feminism, and women's activism. You'll hear Katherine Turk, a historian of women's history at UNC Chapel Hill, talk about how oral histories illuminate other sides of the women's movement; then, you'll hear Jessica Wilkerson, a historian at the University of Mississippi, discuss a memorable interview with Barb Greene conducted for the SOHP's Long Women's Movement Project; and finally, you'll hear a conversation between Rachel Seidman and Cara Schumann about oral history, political activism, and the Moxie Project at UNC. Check it out on our website, on Soundcloud, and on iTunes!
Southern Oral History Program  |  Center for the Study of the American South 
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill  |  410 E. Franklin Street  |  Chapel Hill, NC 27514
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