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US and Brazilian Organizations Announce Campaign Declaring PDF Print

US and Brazilian Organizations Announce Campaign Declaring May 16 an International Day for Sharing Life

The Museum of the Person International Network (Brazil, Portugal, USA and Canada) and the Center for Digital
Storytelling (USA) have announced Listen! “ International Day for Sharing Life Stories, an international celebration of life
stories to take place on May 16th 2008. They are launching the project website, www.ausculti.org, to assist with
information sharing and coordination of the campaign. The goal of the campaign is to gain broad recognition of May 16 as
an annual day for sharing, listening to, and gathering the stories of people's lives.

"Our two organizations see the movement to share life stories as a critical part of the democratic process," states Joe
Lambert, founder and director of the Center for Digital Storytelling. "As our own work has expanded around the globe
from our respective countries, we have found ourselves in dialogue with colleagues who have countless different
approaches and perspectives to life story, but who share the sense that this work is vital to our contemporary societies."
"What has been lacking is a common call to celebrate all these different practices," adds Karen Worcman, founder and
director of the Museum of the Person. "Whether it is helping to collect a local oral history, encouraging new learners to share
their lives in writing, producing stories using analog or digital media, or exhibition of life stories online or through mobile
technologies, we felt we needed a day to bring all these different practices “ different roads to the same destination “
together. This is what inspired us to join in this call. We want this day to be especially dedicated to celebrating and
promoting life story projects that have made a difference within neighborhoods, communities, and societies as a whole."
CDS and the Museum of the Person are calling on people to gather in community halls, classrooms, public parks, theaters,
auditoriums on May 16 to share their stories. They are also calling on organizations to mark the day on their websites and
host virtual story circles via online chats and exchanges, and publication of new stories. Some of the other activities they
are proposing include:
* Story Circles in people's homes
* Public open-microphone performances of stories
* Exhibitions of stories in public venues as image, text, and
audio-visual materials
* Celebratory events to honor local storytellers, practitioners and organizations
* Open houses for organizations with a life-story sharing component
* Online simultaneous gatherings, postings, and story exchanges
* Print, Radio and Television broadcast programming on life stories, and documentaries that feature oral histories and
story exchanges
Already, public events are being planned in globally in Sao Paulo, Cape Town, Melbourne, Toronto, Stockholm, Hamilton,
New Zealand, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Denver, Berkeley, Columbus, Ohio and Long Island, New York. Since
October, over 200 individual and organizational endorsements for the International Day for Sharing Life Stories have been
collected, so far representing fifteen countries and 80 institutions. People are invited to add their endorsement by
registering at the site or writing to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .
Throughout the campaign, CDS and Museum of the Person will be developing special features, topics, and activities for the
website, as well as creating an events listing. They also hope to share thoughts about issues in storytelling work, great
storytelling examples and case studies, curricula for schools, and other activities.
A special online celebration of the life and seminal work of oral historians Studs Terkel and Paul Thompson will be developed
for the day. Studs celebrates his 96th Birthday on May 16, and Paul Thompson will be holding his retirement celebration in
England that day.
For more information about the day, please email:
This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or
This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , or call Joe Lambert in the
U.S., 510 548-2065, or Ana Nassar at the Museum of the
Person in Brazil at +55 11 2144-7170.


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