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Drifting: Feminist Oral History and the Study of the Last Female Drifters in Iceland

Feminist Research




#Metoo , Women’s history , Sagnadansar , Narrative dances , Women’s oral tradition , Female drifters , Woman-on-woman oral history interview , Feminist oral history

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This paper examines the story of the last female drifters in Iceland from the voices of women who remembered them. It examines the advantages of the woman-on-woman oral history interview when obtaining women’s perspectives on women’s history. An examination of women’s narrative techniques suggests that women’s narrative style is often consistent with a conversational style; and therefore it is important to construct a space in woman-on-woman oral history interviews that carries a sense of place for a conversation. It also examines the woman-on-woman oral history interview as a continuation of women’s oral tradition in Iceland, especially an oral tradition from medieval Iceland; called a narrative dance (ice. sagnadans). Lastly, it examines the shared features of the Icelandic #Metoo event stories and the Icelandic narrative dances, in relation to woman-on-woman oral history interviews.

By doing woman-on-woman oral history interviews I was able to go beyond the myth of the female drifters and include female experience.

The woman-on-woman oral history interview is a continuance of women’s oral tradition in Iceland.

Women need a space of their own to share orally their lived experiences as women, in order for them to create a space of their own in history.

The Icelandic #Metoo event stories bear a great resemblance to a medieval women’s oral tradition called a narrative dance (ice. sagnadans) and to the woman-on-woman oral history interview.

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