Completion of the Visual Voices of the Prisons Memory Archive Project
Work has now completed on the Visual Voices of the Prisons Memory Archive project, a partnership between QUB staff based in AEL and the Public Record Office (PRONI), supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Led by Cahal McLaughlin, Professor of Film Studies in AEL, the VV project team has preserved an inclusive collection of more than 150 PMA recordings with former prisoners, prison officers, visitors, educators and others, which are now being made available for public access at PRONI.
A new website for the PMA project, with curated extracts, specially-designed education resources aimed at GCSE students, and interactive maps of the prison sites, can also be found at www.prisonsmemoryarchive.com. From 2016-2020, the VV team hosted numerous events in venues around Northern Ireland and contributed research on the PMA to international conferences and key journals in history and film studies. An independent evaluation has praised the work of the project in a challenging political context, and its best practice approach to maintaining an ethical framework in oral history.
VV project staff have been made to feel very welcome in their home at 21 University Square, and would like to thank the many academic, professional and clerical staff in the School who provided invaluable support over the past few years. Research on the PMA will continue with a new PhD commencing in the School this semester and an edited volume of essays to be published by Vernon Press in 2021.