Oral History and Cuba: A Changing Society?

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Date / time: 23 April, 9:00 am - 5:15 pm

Aston University, MB234

Oral History and Cuba: A Changing Society?

As Paul Thompson states in the Preface of his landmark work Voices of the Past, ‘the richest possibilities of Oral History lie within the development of a more socially conscious and democratic history’ (2000, vi). In the Cuban context, oral history is a vital tool in understanding popular experience, and producing narratives of social change from below. Yet in this context, oral history has sometimes been a challenging experience for researchers, due to the ideological orientation of the Cuban Revolutionary government and the weight of ‘official history’, serving to narrow access for researchers, and the scope of the sayable for citizens.

This one day international workshop therefore seeks to break new ground, by bringing together academics who have conducted oral history research in Cuba or with Cubans living outside Cuba. It will also count with the presence of Professor Paul Thompson, founder of the Oral History society and founding editor of the journal Oral History, who will offer final remarks to close the day.

Paul Thompson (University of Essex)
Maria Estorino Dooling (Cuban Heritage Collection, University of Miami)
Ana Vera Estrada (Instituto Cubano de Investigación Cultural Juan Marinello, Havana)
Elizabeth Dore (Institute of the Americas, UCL / Southampton University)
Antoni Kapcia (University of Nottingham)
Par Kumaraswami (University of Reading)
Mette Berg (University of Oxford)
Vincent Bloch (CESPRA, EHESS, Paris)
Olga Saavedra Montes de Oca (University of Sussex)
Stephanie Panichelli-Batalla (Aston University)