listening for the story

Listen for a while and you'll notice that people speak powerfully, even poetically, about the extraordinary and the everyday experiences that make up their lives. We get the full story in long interviews, and when it's helpful, we edit to compose shorter pieces from people's own words.



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In The Rockefeller University Oral History Project, which Leyla Vural is conducting, some of the world’s greatest scientists share the very personal experience of discovery, describe how they got their ideas, and relate their quest for knowledge to the rest of their lives. Click here to see the series of films Leyla is editing from the interviews.

Nobel laureate Günter Blobel shares the story behind his groundbreaking research and his commitment to rebuilding Dresden in this film edited from his oral history interview. Upon the sad news of Dr. Blobel's death in February 2018, The Wall Street Journal obituary quoted from the oral history and linked to the film.



In Reading in Berlin: Thoughts on Jill Stauffer's Ethical Loneliness, published in In Context Journal in October 2016, Leyla Vural considers philosopher Jill Stauffer's case for listening as a matter of social justice and what that means for today.

Amor Mundi, the weekly newsletter of The Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College, selected Reading in Berlin as one of its "favorite essays...from around the web."



AUDio Stories

Ana Martinez de Luco, cofounder of the recycling center Sure We Can in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, talks about the community of canners and the healthy aspects of picking up cans for a living.

written stories


A member of Picture the Homeless describes what it feels like to be on Hart Island, New York City's potter's field where about one million people have been buried since 1869. Click here to read "The Whole Island is a Cemetery."



interview collections

The Stonewall Oral History Project, which is a project of the National Park Service in partnership with The LGBT Community Center and the Tenement Museum, is about LGBTQ life in New York before and after Stonewall, as much as it is about the uprising itself. I conducted more than 20 of the 80 interviews in this collection. The interviews are available online and held at The LGBT Community Center National History Archive.


Interview excerpts:

The New York Preservation Archive Project’s Saving Preservation Stories oral history collection captures the narratives of New Yorkers who usually get left out of the historic preservation story. This collection includes the audio recording, transcript, and photos from each interview.

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