Say It Forward: A Guide to Social Justice Storytelling

About the Book

Our DIY guide offers strategies and resources for creating justice-driven oral history projects.

Oral history is a universal form of storytelling. For many years Voice of Witness (VOW) has documented and shared powerful stories of people impacted by injustice. Say It Forward extends this work, offering a DIY guide for social justice storytelling that outlines the critical methodology at the core of VOW’s evocative oral history collections. 

The guide includes:

  • Information and strategies related to trauma-informed practices, consent, power discrepancies, awareness of cultural norms, insider/outsider dynamics, self-care for interviewers, and more
  • An extensive resource section for oral history, community storytelling, media options for sharing stories, community-organizing resources, and clinical psychology resources related to traumatic stories
  • Field reports exemplifying how to harness the power of personal narrative to expose larger issues of inequality
Say It Forward is an oral history guide to social justice storytelling

Oral history changes lives. It changes the lives of the narrators, the listeners, the editors, and the readers. And for students of any age, there is no more impactful and even life-changing project they can undertake. [Voice of Witness] has made a profoundly clear, fluid, and accessible guide to doing your own oral histories.


Beyond the Book: Additional Support

Partner With Us
We offer trainings and project support for ethical storytelling, oral history, and education. Let’s collaborate!
oral history resources
Explore Our Resources
Check out our storytelling resources, oral history guides, and lesson plans for inclusive education.
Webinars & Workshops
We offer free and paid workshops on oral history best practices, storytelling ethics, and curricular development.
Ethical Storytelling
We developed 7 core principles for ethics-driven storytelling grounded in respect, collaboration, and dignity.
Praise for Say It Forward:

A vital guide from a vital organization, and it couldn’t come at a more critical time.

LAUREN MARKHAM, author of The Far Away Brothers

Say It Forward is equally useful as an introductory tool for new oral history practitioners and a refresher for the more experienced. No small feat, done thoughtfully in this essential resource.

LINDA SOTELO, New Americans Museum

Say It Forward is a useful guide for anyone new to recording the oral histories of vulnerable populations. Voice of Witness makes plain how to work with sensitivity, respect, and care.

DANIELLE JACKSON, cofounder of Bronx Documentary Center
Field Report Contributors Include: