Capturing Community Memory with Oral History and New Media: The Sharing Stories Project
Klaebe, Helen G. & Foth, Marcus (2006) Capturing Community Memory with Oral History and New Media: The Sharing Stories Project. In Stillman, Larry & Johanson, Graeme (Eds.) 3rd International Conference of the Community Informatics Research Network (CIRN), 9 - 11 Oct, Prato, Italy.
The Kelvin Grove Urban Village (KGUV) is a diverse inner-city master-planned community in Brisbane, Australia, established through a strong partnership between the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and the Queensland Government’s Department of Housing (www.kgurbanvillage.com.au). The 16 hectare KGUV is unique, because the land’s past use includes a rich and varied mix of indigenous, military and educational history, but very little residential history. This paper reports on work in progress, which brings together urban studies, public history and new media in an attempt to synchronise the various opportunities and challenges arising within each discipline. Phase one (2004 – 2006) focussed on remembering the physical location of the KGUV. Phase two (2007 – 2009) examines the people and community, as they begin to move in to this newly completed development. Both phases engage community by creating community memory through public history, life writing and digital storytelling. The first phase researched the use of multi art forms in a public history project, as a vehicle to chronicle the history of the physical location of the KGUV, and to examine the changing role of contemporary public historian. The aim of this paper is to outline the research design for the next phase of this public history research project, which will support digital creativity and media literacy with a view to help new residents find a voice and participate in the knowledge economy. It also seeks to improve a sense of well-being and belonging, foster human talent and socio-cultural values favourable to creativity and innovation. The project will do this by encouraging people to gain a better appreciation of their capacity to bring about change within their local community. It also hopes to re-invigorate a more contemporary interpretation of community values in a networked society and enhance the capacity to interpret and engage with our urban environment by raising awareness of the socio-cultural background and heritage of new community members.
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