Kristina Llewellyn Publication awarded 2021 Outstanding Book Award

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Congratulations! Oral history, education, and justice. Winner of 2021 society of professors of education outstanding book award.

This past week, Social Development Studies faculty member Dr. Kristina R. Llewellyn’s most recent book Oral History, Education, and Justice: Possibilities and Limitations for Redress and Reconciliation (co-edited with Dr. Nicholas Ng-A-Fook) was awarded the Society of Professors of Education 2021 Outstanding Book Award. 

This book continues Llewellyn’s scholarship focusing on oral history and education. One of the intentions of the collection is to help educators think through some of the possibilities, as well as the limitations of, using oral history to teach and address difficult knowledge. The collection does not assume oral history as inherently positive, but rather examines what stories are being told, who should tell them, and how should they be told, to ensure that additional harm is not caused. The collection brings together diverse authors who have both lived experiences with the subject matter and/or longstanding research relationships with communities sharing their lived experiences.

This prestigious international award signals a recognition of how important oral history is, not just within school settings, but also for the public at large. The collaborative work brings together scholars who have a longstanding history of working with social justice. The best part, according to Llewellyn, is that the scholarship presented can be put into practice. Each chapter gives information about how the educators, practitioners, community organizers can draw upon oral history in their justice work. 

When asked what she learned through the creation of the book, Llewellyn said that it was the recognition of the transformative potential of oral history. More than simply the act of telling or hearing a life history, oral history can produce different relationships to the past and to each other. Oral histories are changing lives through evidence in courts, public memory in museums, children stories, and popular culture. Through all these means, oral history holds the potential to articulate lived experiences of harm that disrupt oppressive relations and support movements for justice by and with communities.

“This is urgent work as we come to terms with the violence of our settler-colonial state and we need to engage carefully and ethically with oral histories in learning,” explains Llewellyn. “An award like this brings attention to the incredible work of scholars and community members and hopefully supports more people engaging in oral history for education.”

For more information on the book, visit the Routledge site -

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