So I’ve read… African-American History and the Oral Tradition

This is an insert from the work of Darwin T. Turner.

Oral history, records, and stories are important.  Nevertheless, they are often looked upon unfavorable in most situations.  That’s not simply because no one cares (which is occasionally the issue).  It is more so because it isn’t the most reliable way to tell the true.  Quoting the highlighted portion near the bottom of the ninth page, “Unlike videotape cameras, we human beings do not merely record our lives; we interpret them.”  That said, we humans are not “always” overtly lying or exaggerating, it appears natural to add personal connotations and bias to things told off memory.

Regardless, we should try to remember the importance of oral traditions.  The text reminds us that before some languages had written forms or used them for the reasons of today (leisure or otherwise) tales were told orally.

While I believe the message of the text may be timeless, tape-recorders, unfortunately, aren’t.

Advertisements

One thought on “So I’ve read… African-American History and the Oral Tradition

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s