Columbia University’s Oral History Master of Arts Program is the first program of its kind in the United States: a one-year interdisciplinary MA degree training students in oral history method and theory. Through the creation, archiving and analysis of individual, community and institutional histories, we amplify the critical first-person narratives that constitute memory for generations to come.
Intro: In this post OHMA alum Benji de la Piedra (2014) recounts his experience of attending the From Segregation to Black Lives Matter: a Symposium in Celebration of the Opening of the Joel Buchanan Archive of African American Oral History at the University of Florida. In this essay he reflects on the University of Florida’s Samuel Proctor Oral History Program that centers Black experiences and heritage.
As oral historians we are taught to value personal truths and “mine for meaning” as Portelli once said. But in the era of “fake news” should we be so quick to dismiss facts? Current OHMA student ventured away from the library for a night at the theatre to watch this play out in “Lifespan of a Fact.”