THE ORAL HISTORY PROJECT OF THE ROMANIAN-AMERICAN HERITAGE CENTER
Oral history is a method of gathering and preserving historical information through recorded interviews or written answers to a questionnaire, with or from participants in past events and ways of life. It is an old type of collecting historical information and in certain ways predates the „classical“ ways of collecting historical data.An oral history doesen’t have to be long. The main goal of such a history is to present, from the point of view of the narrator, a certain historical period, event or way of life. An oral history is not about accuracy or the precision of the information contained in it but about the atmosphere and the subjective feelings of the narrator. In certain ways, oral histories could be compared with memoirs. The difference being that an oral history is collected not from a „mover and shaker“ but from an anonymous participant.
An oral history is the story of an individual’s life – life with its experiences in a certain place and at a certain time. It refers to the memories (many times hazy or embellished) of an individual regarding past events and the way he recorded them. It should not surprise that many times oral histories „contradict“ themselves. Those are very subjective sources of information, and they can be used only in connection with historical documents. It should always be remembered that the value of the oral histories is not about their accuracy, but about human feelings.>>>>>Alexandru Nemoianu
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