Oral Genealogies in Africa: Preserving Critical Knowledge

BUSH, Cherie and LYNCH, Russell (2019) Oral Genealogies in Africa: Preserving Critical Knowledge. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2019 - Athens, Greece - Libraries: dialogue for change in Session 271 - Local History and Genealogy with Asia & Oceania Section and Library History.

Bookmark or cite this item: https://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/2463
Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.


Oral Genealogies in Africa: Preserving Critical Knowledge

Many tribes in Africa have a tradition of sharing their ancestral information orally. Written records may not exist so oral histories may be the only records available for genealogical research. The younger generation is less interested in becoming tribal historians. Tribes risk losing their history as the older generations die. FamilySearch helps indigenous people preserve their oral history for future generations. We primarily interview family elders “storytellers”. FamilySearch transcribes the genealogical information and publishes it online for others to use. The presentation will explain the challenges and results of capturing oral genealogies. FamilySearch started a project in 2004 to record oral histories with genealogical content.

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