Storytelling for Social Change workshop

Instructor: Kathleen Haughey, VFC Director of Education
Price: $95

Storytelling, oral history, and ethnography can be powerful tools for the documentation of voices, memories and histories. They can also be catalysts for activism and social change. In this workshop we will explore the ethics and techniques of oral history, ethnography, and storytelling as activist research methodologies.

Attendees will be introduced to these three merging methodologies through a combination of short media pieces and discussions, and will learn the basics of corresponding skills such as interviewing, story circle facilitation, and ethnographic observation. We will also cover the technical aspects of storytelling for social change, providing an introduction to minimal resource audio recording tools.

With support from Vermont Folklife Center educational outreach staff, youths at the Basement Teen Center in Montpelier undertook a public art project sharing community thoughts and perspectives on bullying in the wake of incidents at their local high school.

With support from Vermont Folklife Center educational outreach staff, youths at the Basement Teen Center in Montpelier undertook a public art project sharing community thoughts and perspectives on bullying in the wake of incidents at their local high school.

In addition to developing attendees’ collaborative research abilities, this workshop seeks to expand attendees listening skills—and by extension, interviewing skills—while also encouraging attendees to consider the challenges, possibilities, and ethics of representation. The workshop will conclude with a discussion of project ideas.

Kathleen Haughey is the Vermont Folklife Center's Director of Education. She has a diverse background in education, ethnomusicology, collaborative ethnography, and public humanities administration. As a PhD student in Ethnomusicology at Brown University, Kathleen co-led an audio and video documentary project with Mbyá-Guarani musicians in southern Brazil. Kathleen also has years of experience as an educator, having taught in both K-12 and higher education settings. 

The tuition for this workshop is $95. Register by calling (802) 388-4964.

This workshop will be held at the Vermont Folklife Center’s headquarters building at 88 Main Street in downtown Middlebury.


The Vermont Folklife Center's mission is to broaden, strengthen, and deepen our understanding of Vermont and the surrounding region; to assure a repository for our collective cultural memory; and to strengthen communities by building connections among the diverse peoples of Vermont.