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Cold War Project (Levitt/Goss): Memoirs and Interviews

What's a memoir?

Memoirs are "records of events or history written from the personal knowledge or experience of the writer, or based on special sources of information."

"memoir, n." OED Online. Oxford University Press, March 2015. Web. 7 May 2015.

Your memoir will be a reflection on what you learned and your research process (how your research followed The Big Six, etc.)

Not sure what memoir looks like? Want some ideas for how to write your own based on your research? Check out the following books from the library. NOTE: the following memoirs do not necessarily have anything to do with the Cold War. They are examples to help with your writing.

Personal Interview Tips

The link below is an example of an interview transcript from "Business Week". You will notice a title, an introduction of the person being interviewed (Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas), and the name of the writer that is conducting the interview (Diane Brady).

http://www.businessweek.com/stories/2007-03-11/online-extra-supreme-court-justice-clarence-thomas-speaks

When you're coming up with questions, make sure to ask open-ended questions ("fat") rather than "yes" or "no" questions ("skinny").

"Skinny" Questions:

  • Where were you born?
  • Do you have a big dog?
  • Do you like to read?

"Fat" Questions

  • Describe what you wore to church when you were younger.
  • Tell me about/describe your dog.
  • Explain why you like mysteries.

(Dickson, Diane Skiffington. The Oral History Project: Connecting Students to Their Community, Grades 4-8. Portsmouth: Heinemann, 2006. Print.)