Oral history and new orthodoxies: narrative accounts in the history of learning disability

Rolph, Sheena (2006). Oral history and new orthodoxies: narrative accounts in the history of learning disability. Oral History, 34 pp. 81–91.

URL: http://www.ohs.org.uk/journals/index.php

Abstract

Oral history has played a significant role since 1990 in developing new narratives and directions in learning disability history. In this paper we explore this role, considering both its strengths and limitations. We move the argument on from one of disputed ownership of the histroy, to its reliability and validity. We juxtapose testimony with archival sources, and we argue that in some respects, oral history has been used to bolster rather than challenge our pre-conceptions, and to create new orthodoxies.

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