Life Histories Archive Facilitates Intergenerational Knowledge Exchange

Posted on: 30 May 2012

The Life Histories Archive, an open-access resource for the study of narrative life experiences, was launched by the Provost of Trinity College Dublin, Dr Patrick Prendergast on May 29th last.

It is part of a research project in Trinity’s School of Linguistic, Speech and Communication Sciences and the School of Histories and Humanities which is funded by the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS). The Life Histories Archive project has thematically structured a collection of stories, taken from 24 autobiographies, of a sample of women and men from Dublin and Belfast.

Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, Dr Kathleen McTiernan, Principal Investigator and Dr Deirdre O’Donnell, Senior Research Associate, Life Histories Archive

The purpose of the Life Histories Archive is to capture, catalogue and pass on some of the main life experiences of women and men in modern Ireland. Life histories and memories are important for the preservation of our heritage. The creation of accrued cultural meaning, from the experiences of the lived life, and the telling of those stories to others, informs future generations.

As the Archive is an interactive website, it has many real uses both in academia and in the global community. It has the capacity to invite visitors to contribute their own stories to the website. The potential for this archive to become a self-generating data collection entity, that continually engages global society, is an example of the Trinity vision of research that is of reciprocal benefit to the University and the community.

The Life Histories Archive Project Team, led by Principal Investigator, Dr Kathleen McTiernan, involved the School of Linguistic, Speech and Communications Sciences, the Centre for Gender and Women’s Studies and Trinity library.