Mar. 12: Oral History with Vulnerable Populations: The Schizophrenia Oral History Project

Thursday, March 12, 2015

6-8 PM

Knox Hall, 606 W 122nd St., Room 509

Watch the video of this workshop!

While the purpose of conducting oral history is to document the verbal telling of experiences by a group of individuals, what do you do when those individuals have fluctuating cognitive capabilities and, because of this, have experienced stigmatization and exploitation in the past? In this workshop, Drs. McDonough and Crane will discuss unique issues of recruitment, informed consent, and narrator empowerment, as they have occurred with vulnerable populations in their work on The Schizophrenia Oral History Project (TSOHP). TSOHP is a collection of life stories from individuals with Schizophrenia or Schizoaffective Disorder with the purpose of giving voice to these persons who have been unheard and discounted by society and presenting their stories to public audiences. One unique aspect of the design involves sharing audience feedback with narrators in follow-up interviews and then collecting narrator responses to this feedback. Implications for building both individual narrator trust and broader community connections will be discussed.

Lynda Crane is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Mount St. Joseph University. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Maryland and was a post-doctoral Fellow at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, in Baltimore, MD. She has held research positions at the Wright State University School of Medicine (Fels Institute) and at the National Institute of Mental Health, under Dr. Stanley Greenspan. She has a background in mental disabilities, having worked with inpatients at the Springfield Hospital Center, a state-operated psychiatric facility in Maryland, and having published a textbook entitled: "Mental Retardation: A Community Integration Approach." She is co-founder of The Schizophrenia Oral History Project.

Tracy McDonough, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist and Associate Professor at Mount St. Joseph University as well as co-founder of The Schizophrenia Oral History Project (TSOHP). She got her Bachelor's degree at Miami University in Oxford and her Master's and Doctorate degrees at Bowling Green State University. In 2006, Dr. McDonough won the Clifford Award for Excellence in Teaching as well as Ohio Magazine's Excellence in Education Award. Dr. McDonough is active in several professional organizations, including being a Past-President of the Cincinnati Academy of Professional Psychology. TSOHP is an archive of life stories of persons with Schizophrenia or Schizoaffective Disorder and in 2014, articles about the project were featured in The New York Times as well as The Oral History Review.

SPONSORS: This talk is part of the “Paul F. Lazarsfeld Lecture Series,” co-sponsored by the Columbia Center for Oral History Research (CCOHR) and the Oral History Master of Arts Program (OHMA). Support from the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics (INCITE) is provided for programming that embodies late Professor Paul Lazarsfeld’s commitment to improving methodological approaches that address concerns of vital cultural and social significance.

INFORMATION: For more information, please email Amy Starecheski at aas39(at)