Kicking off the new year with the important theme of “History/Hystory,” Common Ground‘s Open Mic on January 5th featured the Vietnamese American Oral History Project as the “community spotlight.”
Stories that have yet to find a home often find temporary refuge in spaces like Common Ground–spaces that artists, writers, scholars, and community activists have created in the spirit of sharing, with the task of remembering the past and re-imagining new ways to be together in this world.
The Vietnamese American Oral history project shares many goals with Common Ground: creating a safe positive space, encouraging the expression of stories, empowering our communities, sharing our visions and the resources to attain those visions. CG and the VAOHP both sustain, nourish, and enrich us in the work we do in the world–whatever that work may be.
The VAOHP’s simple, yet nuanced and daunting, goal is to gather life stories, so that tomorrow or someday in the distant future, a curious individual may find a gold mine of knowledge and create something even more remarkable–a documentary, a cartoon, a poem, an epic novel. We are gathering life stories of Vietnamese Americans in Southern California now before the first generation disappears. There is extreme urgency in this project and we hope you will help us spread the word.