Warning!!: Studs Terkel Interview Archive Is NOT History

Warning!! The Studs Terkel Radio Archive  of interviews is  promoted as history.  But it’s NOT.  That’s because history is not necessarily what people say in interviews.  Warning!!  The Terkel Archives only contain what people say and, as we all know (but many often forget), what people say does not necessarily correspond to what they and/or others have actually done or actually believe.  So, maybe what’s said in the Archives corresponds to what actually occurred and maybe not.  The only way to know is to check information in the Archives with information/data  from two, or preferably three or more, non-asking sources of information; such as documents and behavioral traces.

Warning!!  Terkel is just an interviewer; an asker who relies on what people say.  Don’t do that!  Don’t rely on what people say when you want to find out about history or what’s really going on now.

For a complete critique of interviewing–and all other types of asking–as well as brief descriptions of what I call “proper” procedures for obtaining reliable information, see my book, The Problem with Survey Research.


About georgebeam

George Beam is an educator and author. The perspectives that inform his interpretations of the topics of this blog–-as well as his other writings and university courses -–are system analysis, behaviorism, and Internet effects. Specific interests include quality management, methodology, and politics. He is Associate Professor Emeritus, Department of Public Administration; Affiliated Faculty, Department of Political Science; and, previously, Head, Department of Public Administration, University of Illinois at Chicago
This entry was posted in Survey Research and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Warning!!: Studs Terkel Interview Archive Is NOT History

  1. Pingback: Interviews Not Trustworthy and Triply Subjective | George Beam's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.