Launched in June 2022 at the Asian Cultural Centre, the History Faculty's community history programme seeks to support and develop partnerships with community historians.
The community history programme is a new endeavour for the Faculty, with the appointment of Dr. Priya Atwal as the faculty's first (part-time) Community History Fellow. But community history is not, of course, a new area of study. There are many community history groups in the city and county, and we very much looking forward to working with and learning from them. We are delighted that our first partnerships were with the Afrikan Caribbean Kultral Heritage Initiative, Everday Muslim, and the Museum of Oxford. We are also grateful to the local colleagues, students, faculty members and alumni who have supported the initiative, many of whom have already been involved in community history work.
We are committed to forging mutually beneficial partnerships, with community historians setting the agendas, and to that end we will follow the principles of Common Cause (www.commoncauseresearch.com), in particular: partnerships must strengthen community projects; they must be reciprocal and involve fair knowledge exchange; the time and expenses of community partners must be fairly paid for; there must be transparency about the grounds on which partnering relationships are entered into, and there must be a commitment to sustainability and legacy.
We very much hope that this community history initiative will provide new ways of understanding history, and also new ways of doing history - in partnership, with community historians setting the research agendas.