Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History 9
Abram J. Lewis, Jeanne Vaccaro, Grinnell College, University of California, Davis
Gregory Rosenthal, Roanoke College
Jessica Wilkerson, University of Mississippi
This roundtable reflects on the significance, potential, and challenges of past and present LGBTQ oral history projects. In particular, the roundtable will consider the following questions: (1) How did early community-based projects, such as the SF GLBT Historical Society, come to support and prioritize oral histories as part of their broader mission and work? (2) What are the challenges/pleasures of working on community oral histories projects, particularly in collaboration with other scholars, community members, and students? (3) How can we historicize oral history projects, past and present, as reflecting (or interrogating) broader LGBTQ activism, politics, and social life? And how were such projects received by people in the community and the academy? (4) What has been the afterlife of earlier oral history projects--many of which are now digitized and archived? And (5) how do LGBTQ oral histories of the past provide a model for oral histories today and in the future, with LGBTQ communities as well as other historically marginalized groups? Speakers will address these questions by reflecting on their own work as leaders of LGBTQ oral history projects.