American Studies 100: Understanding America

"Mini Oral History" Project – Where the Girls Are


Length: 3-4 page paper plus typed transcript of interview


Project Goal: to develop and refine your ability to analyze a primary source (interview) using a secondary source (Douglas's Where the Girls Are)


Solicit a woman (friend, mother, grandmother, aunt, etc.) who grew up between the 1950s and the 1970s to interview using the attached "Information Statement." Using Douglas's Where the Girls Are, formulate 4-5 open-ended questions to ask your interviewee – consider asking her about the types of representations of women that she remembers "growing up female with the mass media" and about her relationship (or lack thereof) to the second wave feminist movement. The transcription of the interview should be typed in 12 pt., Times New Roman font, single-spaced with 1" margins.


Ideally, you will ask your interviewee these questions in person – recording your interview and transcribing both the questions and corresponding answers. If you are unable to conduct an interview in person you may conduct a telephone interview or, as a last resort, an email interview. All interviews must be transcribed regardless of the form they take.


After you have conducted and transcribed your interview, analyze your interviewee's experience using Douglas's Where the Girls Are in a 3-4 page paper with an identifiable thesis statement. Your paper have a title; it must be typed in 12 pt., Times New Roman font, double-spaced with 1" margins. Cite all sources correctly using footnotes and the Chicago Manual of Style format (See Blackboard for information on Citation Format).