Tag Archives: Public History

Two NYU Exhibitions: Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire

This month marks the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire. Two on-campus exhibitions are commemorating this event, its consequences, and its enduring historical lessons.

“The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire: One Hundred Years After”
Multimedia exhibition curated by the Tamiment Library
NYU Open House (528 LaGuardia, between Bleecker and W. 3rd Streets)
On exhibit until May 2011

Art ● Memory ● Place
Collaborative Exhibition between the Grey Art Gallery
and NYU Graduate Students in Museum Studies and Public History
100 Washington Square East
January 11 – March 26 / April 12 – July 9

Oral History in New York: Archives and Public History Brown Bag Lunch Discussion: Dec. 3

The NYU Archives and Public History Program first Friday brown bag lunch series presents:

– Oral History in New York: Planning, Implementation and Use –

Friday December 3, 12:00-2:00pm
King Juan Carlos Center (53 Washington Square South), Room 607

The Archives and Public History brown bag lunch series continues on Friday, December 3rd for a panel discussion featuring oral historians from the New York area. Speakers will discuss their recent and ongoing projects as well as the diverse uses of oral history in exhibits, research projects and education.

Please RSVP to Margaret Fraser at mfraser522@gmail.com by Wednesday, December 1.

Speakers include:
  • Amy Starecheski, Columbia Oral History Research Office, recently worked on the Telling Lives Project in Chinatown and currently working with squatters
  • Sady Sullivan, Director of Oral History at the Brooklyn Historical Society
  • Nina Talbot, artist and oral historian, recently curated the exhibit “Painting Brooklyn Stories of Immigration and Survival” at the Brooklyn Historical Society

The Archives and Public History Program first Friday brown bag lunch series is organized in part by the NYU student chapter of the Society of American Archivists

Oral History, Labors of Waste, and the Value of Knowledge (Taught by Robin Nagle)

Dear Students-

There are a lot of interesting ‘Topics’ seminars on offer at Draper next semester, so we’ll be highlighting these over the next few weeks. First on our list is “Topics in the City: Topics in The City: Oral History, Labors of Waste, and Values of Knowledge” which will be taught by Draper’s director, Robin Nagle. The course description is below; if you’re interested in enrolling, please contact Robin directly at robin[dot]nagle[at]nyu[dot]edu.


Oral History, Labors of Waste, and the Value of Knowledge

This class uses oral history to consider the role of unappreciated labor and invisible knowledge in an urban setting. Working in collaboration with current and former members of New York City’s Department of Sanitation to, we will explore the dynamics of a historically significant work force to consider some overlooked elements of the city’s past and to become acquainted with the complexities of a vital but largely hidden infrastructure.

Oral history, both as a discipline and as a practice, serves many functions. It can be an investigatory and documentary technique, a fact-finding strategy, a professional tool, a casual practice, or a personal reflection. Methods of oral history are useful to historians, anthropologists, museum curators, educators, journalists, playwrights, and novelists, among others. Some who use oral history are quite self-conscious about the larger intellectual conversations in which it fits, while others simply find it a helpful way to learn details about particular events, individuals, or moments in time.

Within the academy, these many understandings and uses of oral history are considered through a variety of theoretical frameworks that ask questions about truth (who claims it, and who contests it), perspective (whose voice is heard, whose is ignored, by whom, in what contexts), relevance (who cares? why or why not?), bias (of everyone involved), access (to the stories, to the people telling the stories) and power (woven through the entire enterprise, but not always easy to measure). We will delve into these and related concerns throughout the semester.

At the same time, we will give equal attention to practicalities, including interview skills, research techniques, equipment choices, and transcription software and protocols.

Students will complete two life-history interviews, including transcriptions finished to deposit standards. Assignments will include journal articles, book excerpts, and examples of oral histories. Students will also be responsible for a series of reflective and analytical writing assignments as well as research outside class that will be necessary preparation for the interviews themselves.

By the end of the semester, students will have learned basic oral history methods and theories, and will be able to “read” the city with more nuance and insight. The interviews that the class gathers will become permanent records within the Sanitation Oral History Archive, a joint NYU/DSNY venture.

Robin Nagle talk at NYU Langone tonight

Draper’s fearless leader, Robin Nagle, will be giving a talk tonight entitled How Street Cleaners Saved New York City.

Monday, July 26
5:30 p.m.NYU School of Medicine, Smilow Multipurpose Room
550 1st Avenue (enter facility at main entrance–550 1st Avenue at E. 32nd Street; once inside, signs direct you to Smilow Multipurpose Room).

More info here.

Archives & Public History Brown Bag Lunch: Grant Writing (April 2)

NYU Archives and Public History Program brown bag lunch series
Grant writing
Friday April 2, 12:00-2:00pm
King Juan Carlos Center, room 607

Please join us for the final Archives and Public History Program brown bag lunch of the spring 2010 semester, which will feature a discussion about applying for and utilizing grant money in archival and historical institutions. Speakers include:

Barbara Haws, archivist/historian of the New York Philharmonic and alum of the archives and public history program. Haws has performed much successful fundraising, and has received a substantial grant from the Leon Levy Foundation to digitize 1.3 million pages of the orchestra’s archive, which can be searched here.

Maurita Baldock, also an alum of the program and curator of manuscripts at the New York Historical Society. Baldock has recently received a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Mike Nash, head of the Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Archives, and an extremely successful grant writer and creative fundraiser.

And Peter Wosh, director of the Archives and Public History Program, who has been a grant recipient from NEH and NHPRC as well as a number of state agencies, and a review panelist for many state and national agencies.

Please bring a brown bag lunch. Complimentary drinks and desserts will be provided.

Please RSVP to Kate Dundon at katedundon@gmail.com by Tuesday, March 30.