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Desert Dancer Tech: Digitising Lomax: AFC crowdsourcing (2) Tech: Digitising Lomax: AFC crowdsourcing 05 Sep 19


Via the American Folklife Center on Facebook:

The American Folklife Center needs your help! Lomax’s accompanying field notes and journals have recently become widely available online. We want to make them even more accessible, more useful, and better known, through the Library of Congress’s crowdsourcing project: By the People. The project allows patrons the opportunity to transcribe online manuscripts, including Lomax’s field notes and journals. Anyone can take part in this virtual volunteering effort, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. Volunteers are welcome to register for an account if they want to access all of the features of the site, including tagging and reviewing, but those just wishing to transcribe can take part without creating an account. Read more about it in this new post in Folklife Today!

The Man Who Recorded the World: On the Road with Alan Lomax

An excerpt:

"... only recently have Lomax’s accompanying field notes and journals become widely available online. We want to make them even more accessible, more useful, and better known, through the Library of Congress’s crowdsourcing project: By the People.

A brainchild of the LC Labs division, By the People is available online at this link. It allows patrons the opportunity to transcribe online manuscripts, including Lomax’s field notes and journals. Anyone can take part in this virtual volunteering effort, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. Volunteers are welcome to register for an account if they want to access all of the features of the site, including tagging and reviewing, but those just wishing to transcribe can take part without creating an account. The process of transcription and review provides hands on access to unique materials and encourages transcribers to deepen their understanding of the materials and the circumstances in which they came to be. These transcriptions increase the visibility and enhance the usability of the collection from which the original manuscript came.

Through By the People, the American Folklife Center will launch “The Man Who Recorded the World: On the Road with Alan Lomax,” which features more than 10,000 pages of fieldwork created by Alan Lomax and others during his 30-year career as an active fieldworker. ..."
...
The field notebooks provide a unique window into Lomax’s travels, some of which were undertaken in his capacity as a Library of Congress staff member. They serve as both a chronological record of professional activities and as his personal journals, thereby revealing interesting information about genres, performers, and locations. By the People also includes song and interview transcriptions that Lomax and his colleagues utilized in publication and for research. Additionally, written correspondence was a necessary aspect of fieldwork for Lomax, whether with the Library of Congress, or with performers and local contacts at his destinations. As a whole, these different types of materials are invaluable for the study of the Lomax family and their collaborators, such as Zora Neale Hurston, and for an understanding of 20th-century American folk music.

“The Man Who Recorded the World: On the Road with Alan Lomax” will present these vital documents in three phases relating to Lomax’s travels and geography. They are:

Phase 1: United States and Circum-Caribbean (1933–1962)
Phase 2: Britain, Ireland, and Northern Europe (1950s)
Phase 3: Spain and Italy (1950s)

The first phase will include nearly 3000 pages from Lomax’s United States and Circum-Caribbean fieldwork. Although much of the work focuses on the African Diaspora, some trips document immigrant groups from Europe and include Finnish-, French-, and Gaelic-language materials.

~ Becky near Ashland, OR


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