CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (March 13, 2008) — From reporters and biographers to bloggers and podcasters, the country’s top literary minds will gather this weekend to explore the challenges of professional storytelling in the multimedia age. The 2008 Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism, Storytelling in Many Voices, Many Media will take place at the Sheraton Boston March 14-16.
In a new twist this year, multimedia trendsetters will join the traditional roster of award-winning writers from print, broadcast, publishing and film to share tips, trade secrets, discuss best practices, and examine the art and craft of nonfiction narrative.
Hundreds of participants will learn the tools and techniques needed to tell dynamic, layered stories across all media platforms. They will also have an opportunity to interact with the nation’s leading storytellers and join in a candid conversation about both the traditions and the future of narrative journalism at a time when the art form is threatened.
“The urge to tell stories is deeply human and at the heart of this conference,” says new Nieman Narrative Director Constance Hale. “Our goal this year is to take the successful legacy of previous conferences and build on it, so that narrative journalists can embrace the promise of new media. The power of – and necessity for – storytelling will always remain, no matter the medium through which it is delivered.”
The narrative conference, sponsored by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, is the premier annual event for journalists who wish to learn from experts in the field and share ideas with peers.
Keynote speakers for 2008 include:
- John Hockenberry: Emmy and Peabody Award-winning journalist and commentator
- Dana Priest and Anne Hull: Investigative journalists for The Washington Post who exposed the mistreatment of Iraq War veterans at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center
- Sherry Turkle: Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology at MIT and a clinical psychologist who researches and writes on people’s relationship with technology
- Sam Pollard: Film director, producer and editor
Breakout sessions will be led both by returning favorites as well as an all-star lineup of new speakers including:
- Travis Fox: Emmy Award-winning video producer for washingtonpost.com, who covers both international and domestic stories
- Roy Peter Clark: Writing instructor at the Poynter Institute and author or editor of 14 books on the craft and values of journalism
- Adam Hochschild: Author of six nonfiction books including King Leopold’s Ghost and Bury the Chains
- Elizabeth Farnsworth: Correspondent, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
- Marcus Mabry: Veteran foreign correspondent, editor, author and commentator. Mabry is international business editor for The New York Times
- Khoi Vinh: Design director for NYTimes.com, and the author of the blog subtraction.com
- Alex Kotlowitz: Author and regular contributor to The New York Times Magazine and public radio’s This American Life
- Jacqui Banaszynski: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and editing fellow at the Poynter Institute who holds the Knight Chair in Editing at the Missouri School of Journalism
For more information including speaker bios, the conference schedule and the narrative message board visit : www.nieman.harvard.edu/narrative2008
Established in 1938, the Nieman program is the oldest midcareer fellowship for journalists in the world. The fellowships are awarded to working journalists of accomplishment and promise for a year of study at the university. More than 1,200 journalists from 88 countries have studied at Harvard as Nieman Fellows.
The Nieman Foundation publishes the quarterly magazine Nieman Reports and is the home of the Nieman Watchdog Journalism Project, which encourages reporters and editors to monitor and hold accountable those who exert power in all aspects of public life.