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Conflicts and Continuity
Volume: 35, Issue: 2 (2007)
British And American FNS Nurses (1950s-1960s): Oral History Narratives On Nursing
The identification of external forces impeding the advancement of professional nursing cited as major contributors to ‘nursing shortages’ in the available literature is extensive. Yet, little has been done to identify what internal motivators exist within the discipline that not only attract but also serve to keep nurses in difficult education and practice environments. American Nurse-Midwife Mary Breckinridge established the Frontier Nursing Service (FNS) in a poor, rural, underdeveloped area of the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Kentucky in 1925. Through former British and American Frontier Nursing Service Nurses’ oral history narratives these external and internal forces are identified and explored. Many nurses today continue to enter practice motivated by the same internal forces described by these former FNS nurses. If nursing is to stem the tide of exodus from the profession it must focus more attention on creating a practice environment that motivates these individuals.
Author(s): Edith A. West, Ron Iphofen and Wil Griffith
Keywords: Oral History, narrative, nursing recruitment, retention, work environment

‘How Could These People Do This Sort Of Stuff And Then We Have To Look After Them?’ Ethical Dilemmas Of Nursing In The Northern Ireland Conflict
The article explores a series of ethical and professional dilemmas that typified nursing practice during the ‘Troubles’ especially from the period 1968 to 1994 when the first IRA ceasefire was called. It is based primarily upon the testimonies of nurses themselves about their experiences during the conflict. This piece is part of work on medical professional ethics undertaken with the help of the Nuffield Trust.
Author(s): Farhat Manzoor, Greta Jones And James Mckenna
Keywords: Northern Ireland; Troubles; ethics; dilemmas

‘Whatever You Say, Say Nothing’: Researching Memory And Identity In Mid-Ulster, 1945-1969
The influence of collective memory on political identity in Ireland has been well documented. It has particular force in Northern Ireland where there is fundamental disagreement about how and why the conflict erupted and how it should be resolved. This article outlines some of the issues encountered by an ‘insider’ when attempting to record and analyse the conflicting memories of a range of Protestants and Catholics who grew up in Mid-Ulster in the decades preceding the Troubles. In particular, it considers the challenges and opportunities presented by a two-pronged approach to oral history: using testimony as evidence about historical experience in the past and as evidence about historical memory – both collective and individual – in the present.
Author(s): Anna Bryson
Keywords: Northern Ireland; insider; collective memory; individual memory

Dissonant Memories: National Identity, Political Power, And The Commemoration Of World War Two In Switzerland
The 1990s debate surrounding the Swiss bank accounts of Holocaust victims has led to a revision of the historical view of Switzerland’s role in World War Two, which until then was dominated by the image of an innocent and resisting nation. The theory of commemoration of German researchers Jan and Aleida Assmann can help us to understand the ostensible clash of history and memory that occurred during this debate. Based on the results of the oral history project Archimob. The article shows that despite the long-time dominant view of the country’s past, several partial memories have existed which have threatened to oppose this, but which had no chance of being articulated in public. This leads to the conclusion that the dominance of a certain method of commemoration in public is always a means for gaining social power.
Author(s): Christof Dejung
Keywords: Communicative Memory; Cultural Memory; Holocaust; World War Two; Switzerland

Voices In The Kitchen: Cooking Tools As Inalienable Possessions
This article examines the different ways that cooking utensils can come to embody personal and collective family memories. Because they are relatively durable, show signs of age, and because they travel with us from place to place, certain cooking tools take on the status of biographical objects, used to tell the stories of people’s lives and their ancestors, as well as to prepare their daily meal. They also are decommodified, taking on the value of ‘inalienable possessions’ which are incorporated into people’s identities and their sense of continuity with the past.
Author(s): David Sutton And Michael Hernandez
Keywords: Cooking; Inalienable Possessions; Material Culture; Memory

Beyond individual/ collective memory: Women’s transactive memories of food, family and conflict
A key question in oral history involves the status of individual memories and how these relate to the social historical construction and narration of shared memories. While agreeing broadly with concerns about the dangers of accepting uncritically that individual memories are framed by collective discourses about the past, it is argued that there are other ways of examining individual and ‘collective’ memories without drawing upon overly simplistic cultural historical explanations. Similarly, a rejection of ‘collective’ memory need not mean reducing remembering to a study of individual consciousness or unconsciousness. Instead the concept of transactive remembering is applied to an analysis of video recorded group meetings. In doing so it is argued that an alternative way of understanding the complex social processes involved in remembering can be developed.
Author(s): Graham Smith
Keywords: Transactive remembering; group memory; family and food

Mixed Martial Arts and Internet Forums: A case study in treating internet sources as oral history
This paper explores the use of internet discussion forums as a source of information about the emerging new sport of mixed martial arts (MMA). It begins with an explanation of the origins of MMA and how it has sometimes been misrepresented by sections of the mass media. This discussion is followed by a discussion of how internet forums may be used to provide a ‘view from below’ to counter such negative media images, similarities and differences between such internet communication and oral history and theoretical and methodological issues concerning the use of internet communications as a source of research evidence.
Author(s): John Hopton
Keywords: Internet discussion forums; oral history, mixed martial arts; methodology

Public History
Exploring Identity in Later Life through BBC People’s War Interviews
Using data gathered from interviews carried out for the BBC World War Two People’s War project, this article explores how war memories can help older people to maintain a sense of identity, sometimes in the face of multiple losses. Psychological and social theories from the past thirty years are used to shed light on why many older people have vivid memories of their wartime experiences and how these memories can provide meaning and purpose in later life. War memories are found to play an important part in the self-image of some older people, and it is concluded that discussing these with others can help to affirm a sense of self-worth and well-being.
Author(s): Sarah Housden and Jenny Zmroczek
Keywords: Older people; identity; Second World War; BBC People’s War; memories; reminiscence

Handbook of Oral History, Thomas L. Charlton
Author(s): Lois E. Myers and Rebecca Sharpless (eds)

Return to Akenfield: Portrait of an English Village in the 21st Century
Author(s): Craig Taylor

Exploring Experiences of Advocacy by People with Learning Disabilities: Testimonies of Resistance
Author(s): Duncan Mitchell, Rannveig Traustadóttir, Rohhss Chapman, Louise Townson, Nigel Ingham and Sue Ledger (eds) Museum of Croydon, Croydon Museum & Heritage Service

Hello Sailor! Gay Life on the Ocean Wave

National Museums Liverpool Touring Exhibition, Southampton Maritime Museum

Sea-Change: Wivenhoe Remembered
Author(s): Paul Thompson

Voices from the Mead: People’s Stories of the Kingsmead Estate
Author(s): Roger Green (ed)

Seven Roads in Summertown: Voices from an Oxford Suburb
Author(s): Perilla Kinchin (ed).