Friday, May 10, 2013

Project Albanian Voices

Today's post is a bit different.  Instead of sharing my own thoughts I'm sharing those of an American linguistic student who is conducting research for a book on the immigration experiences of Albanians through the lens of language and music.  Ashley Elizabeth Woods is looking for assistance in raising money to help her with her field research.  As a history buff and American currently living in Albania, I am intrigued by this project and want to do my part to help support its mission.  

You can read a brief excerpt of the project in Ashley's own words below but for more information or to learn how you can help support this exciting project project click here.

"The true history of mankind will be written only when Albanians participate in its only writing."  This statement is as true today as it was in the 20th Century when the Austrian linguist Maximilian Lambertz said it. The interest in Albania that led to the creation of this project was due to the presence of and assistance by Albanians in a time of dire need.  Awestruck by the history of the Illyrians, their language and the lack of that information that has been present about all of it in most U.S. formal education, one of the aims of Project Albanian Voices is to shed light on aspects of the Albanian culture that are positive (not to portray them as Hollywood villains).  So, the goal of this project is to focus on the aspects of Albanian culture that are positive and inspirational.  One motivational aspect of Albanian culture is the history of how they have defended their homeland from a multitude of antagonistic invaders, saved it from multiple wars and tolerated almost constant political instability.  These stories about the necessity for  migration, be it due to economic factors, deportation or blood-feuds are harrowing and exhilarating.  The tales of bravery in the face of adversity are truly overwhelming and inspirational.

This project focuses on documenting the experiences and stories related to the Albanian people (located inside of and outside of  Albania).  The book will be intended for English-speaking Albanians, academics and experts on Balkan affairs. Ashley also plans to release a simultaneous translation in Albanian so tat the book is accessible to all Albanians.  Her ultimate goal is for the book to be understood in the context of the ongoing immigration debate in the United States which tends to ignore the European immigrants' point of view.

The goal of this Kickstarter project is to raise the necessary funds to travel to Albania during the summer of 2013 to complete interviews and chronicle individual stories related to migration. In order to raise this money by the deadline (May 26th at 11:59 pm), Ashley needs your help.  Only the efforts of an entire community interested in the fair and honest preservation of Albanian history can make this a reality.  If you can donate, please do so at any amount.  If you can help in other ways such as publicizing this via social networks or writing about it in blogs and newspapers, we would thank you immensely."

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the support! We are getting more and more hits and donations every day!