Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Nuer Field Notes

Nuer Field Notes

Social & Behavioral Sciences: Anthropolgy

Fieldnotes, i.e., notes taken by scholars during their research in Africa, are important materials, comparable to primary sources. And yet typically, once the researchers have collected and recorded their information, they return home, analyze the material, and publish the analyses. The notes, once exhausted for publication, are stored and forgotten somewhere in an attic or a basement where nobody has access to them. This situation has been recognized as a problem by various individuals as well as organizations, and several initiatives to rescue those materials are currently under-way. The EVIA Digital Archive project is one such initiative. It is a joint effort of Indiana University and the University of Michigan to establish a digital archive of ethnomusicological videos for use by scholars and instructors. Ultimately, the EVIA Digital Archive intends to preserve video recordings and make them easily accessible for teaching and research, providing an alternative to physical archives whose unique materials are available only to people who travel to the archive location. It is also an effort to preserve information stored in a medium which is known to have a short life.

The Nuer Field Notes Project should be seen in this context. Its goal is to preserve and make accessible a set of linguistic field notes recorded by Eleanor Vandevort, who was a missionary in the South Sudan between 1949 and 1963.

(This description is quoted directly from the content provider Nuer Field Notes

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