This oral history interview is an intimate conversation between two people, both of whom have generously agreed to share this recording with Oral History Summer School, and with you. Please listen in the spirit with which this was shared.
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This oral history interview was conducted with Olivia Williams at Solaris in Hudson, NY on June 6, 2013 for the 2013 Oral History Summer School and Hudson Oral History Archive. Olivia Williams is an eighteen-year-old resident who was born and raised in Hudson with Jamaican heritage. She begins her interview with discussions of her Jamaican upbringing and pride. She continues to discuss the prominent members of her family and her upbringing. She mentions individual poor decision making early and carries the theme throughout the interview. Also mentioned early and carried throughout the interview are thoughts on her spiritual journey and conflict with Bible, Christianity, and family members who hold certain Christian beliefs. She laments on her time in Troy, NY where she started her college education, fell in love, and subsequently dropped out. She discusses ongoing conflict with her family members and lover, as well as with her own sexuality. She discusses her role in the community of Hudson as well as the influence that local community organizations have had and continue to have on her. She recalls Childhood memories of empathy and caring and discusses a yearning to find emotional, spiritual, educational and physical stability. She closes the interview by discussing a trip to Africa, what she experienced there, and how the trip impacted her life after she returned to Hudson. She reflects on her life up to present time and discusses her hopes for her future.
Melissa Creary was born in Bryn Mawr, PA and raised in South Florida. Her heritage is Jamaican. She is currently a doctoral student studying race, policy, and health in Brazil at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Her interests in attending the Oral History Summer School are to learn more about the nuance of interview question development and the field in general. She wants to capture the personal and political stories to further explain how policy impacts a population’s health.
This interview is hereby made available for research purposes only. For additional uses (radio and other media, music, internet), please click here to inquire about permissions.
Oral history is an iterative process. In keeping with oral history values of anti-fixity, interviewees will have an opportunity to add, annotate and reflect upon their lives and interviews in perpetuity. Talking back to the archive is a form of “shared authority.”