Sharon Raynor
Associate Professor of English and Mott University Distinguished Professor
Johnson C. Smith University

Professor Raynor will be working with the Center for Documentary Studies to conduct and document community experiences, spoken memory, oral history, and the literacy and culture of silence.  She plans to explore topics including the cultural preparedness of making a memory into a story and how memories and stories can cross cultures and generations without the experiences being lost in translation.  Professor Raynor has directed two oral history projects, “Breaking the Silence: The Unspoken Brotherhood of Vietnam Veterans” and “Soldier-to-Soldier: Men and Women Share their Legacy of War,” originally funded by the North Carolina Humanities Council.

Tom Rankin, Director of the Center for Documentary Studies, said the timing could not be better for having Professor Raynor on campus.  “We are beginning a Veterans History initiative, much of that grounded in oral interviews.  Next semester Elaine Lawless, Lehman Brady Visiting Joint Chair Professor in Documentary Studies and American Studies at at Duke and UNC, will be teaching a course around veterans’ history and documentary.”

Professor Raynor earned her BA and MA in English from East Carolina University and her PhD in English from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Professor Raynor recently moderated a panel of the veterans who participated in "Breaking the Silence" for the Jr. ROTC program at West Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte.  Click here to see news coverage of the event.


A group of veterans participating in Sharon Raynor's oral history project, "Breaking the Silence: The Unspoken Brotherhood of Vietnam Veterans," visited Duke classes in History and Documentary Studies on February 21, 2012. Here she talks about the visit with Tom Rankin of the Center for Documentary Studies.

Raynor is Associate Professor of English at Johnson C. Smith University. She was a Humanities Writ Large Visiting Faculty Fellow at Duke in the spring of 2012. Read more about the visit and the project: https://humanitieswritlarge.duke.edu/about/blog/2012/03/15/veterans-at-duke

  • A group of veterans participating in Sharon Raynor's oral history project, "Breaking the Silence: The Unspoken Brotherhood of Vietnam Veterans," visited Duke classes in History and Documentary Studies on February 21, 2012. Here she talks about the visit with Tom Rankin of the Center for Documentary Studies.

    Raynor is Associate Professor of English at Johnson C. Smith University. She was a Humanities Writ Large Visiting Faculty Fellow at Duke in the spring of 2012. Read more about the visit and the project: https://humanitieswritlarge.duke.edu/about/blog/2012/03/15/veterans-at-duke

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Sharon Raynor, Visiting Faculty Fellow, participated in a panel discussion of When Janey Comes Marching Home: Portraits of Women Combat Veterans on Tuesday, March 20 at the Center for Documentary Studies (read more)

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