StoryCorps, the most ambitious oral history project ever undertaken, has announced the second annual National Day of Listening, to take place on November 27,2009. The National Day of Listening is an effort to encourage all Americans to honor a friend, a loved one, or a member of their community by interviewing them about their lives. The interview process takes less than an hour and offers a meaningful alternative to holiday consumerism.
Participants are encouraged to record their National Day of Listening interviews using equipment that is readily available in most homes – from cell phones to tape recorders to computers or even pen and paper. StoryCorps has created a free Do-It-Yourself interview guide with equipment recommendations and interview instructions available online at nationaldayoflistening.org.
“In the midst of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, the idea of listening during the holiday season has clearly resonated with people across the country,” says StoryCorps founder and MacArthur “Genius” Dave Isay. “The National Day of Listening, which coincides with Black Friday – traditionally the largest shopping day of the year – proves that simply listening to one another is the least expensive and most meaningful gift we can give.”
StoryCorps’ national partners for the National Day of Listening include NPR, the Corporation for National and Community Service and the American Library Association. Although StoryCorps does not currently have the capacity to include National Day of Listening interviews in its collection at the Library of Congress, the organization provides simple instructions for recording and preserving interviews at nationaldayoflistening.org.