In the last two decades there has been a huge increase in the number of oral history projects that have put individuals’ experiences into the wider public realm and have thus redefined our understanding of major historical events in the twentieth century.
The aim of Sephardi Voices UK is to ensure that the testimonies and stories of the Jews from North Africa, the Middle East, and Iran who came to the UK in different waves of emigration, will be recorded and documented and that they will become an integral part of the history of British Jewish settlement in the UK.
The mission of Sephardi Voices UK is to preserve the memories of Sephardi and Mizrahi Jews and to make them digitally accessible. We are thus enabling families and communities to connect with their history. Scholars and the general public will be able to research the lives of the Jews from countries such as Iraq, Iran, Egypt, Sudan, Libya, Algeria, Lebanon, Tunisia, and Morocco. By listening to the Sephardi Voices interviews we learn about Jewish communities, many of which no longer exist, and about the complex histories of displacement, migration and settlement which members of these communities experienced.
The Sephardi Voices UK interviews have now become part of the British Library online catalogue and can be ordered for viewing in the Reading Rooms of the Library. For more information on the British Library sound archive, click here.
Dr Bea Lewkowicz
Director, Sephradi Voices UK