Identity and ethics in the Oral History interview

What effect does an interview have on a person’s selfhood? By asking the interviewee to articulate a narrative for their life are oral historians (re-)creating parts of their identity? Are we drawing a red thread through in someone’s life that they may not have drawn before?

How does the practice of oral history affect the interviewer? Should we choose or avoid topics that are important to us personally? What impact does interviewing have on our own identities? How much of yourself do you reveal? Do you have an interviewer persona? Are there identities or attachments that you promote, hide or obscure?

With these questions in mind, we intend to open a discussion on the impact of interviewing, considering ethical issues surrounding transparency, consent, and transference.