Upcoming Projects

The Texas After Violence Project currently is planning oral history projects that will focus on violence as a public health concern. We are particularly interested in exploring transgenerational trauma associated with Texas lynchings and executions, inquiring into how private and state violence may perpetuate trauma symptoms throughout communities and across generations. We also hope to return to some of our past narrators for a longitudinal exploration of the ways in which their lives have changed in the years since our initial interviews. In addition to new oral history research and interviews, we are also working on new curated projects based on our archival material.

Current Projects


“Connecting to the Ideologies That Surround Us”: Oral History Stewardship as an Entry Point to Critical Theory in the Undergraduate Classroom

In the most recent issue of the Oral History Review, TAVP board member Charlotte Nunes writes about working with TAVP’s oral history collection in the classroom at Southwestern in 2015. Her experience demonstrates the value of providing students with the opportunity to work closely with archival materials and engage in their stewardship. She writes: “Digitally […]


Life and Death in a Carceral State

TAVP is collaborating with the Texas Justice Initiative (TJI) on a project to document the stories and experiences of those that have been directly impacted by deaths in Texas’ criminal justice system, especially deaths in police, jail, and prison custody. Much like TAVP’s mission to better understand how the death penalty impacts individuals, families, and communities, […]

Past Projects


Death Penalty and the Victims

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has just published Death Penalty and the Victims, which “includes perspectives from a broad range of victims. While some of them are family members of crime victims, others are victims of human rights violations in application of the death penalty, of its brutality and traumatic effects. […]


The Darkest Hour

In 2014, Texas After Violence board member Betty Gilmore co-authored The Darkest Hour: Shedding Light on the Impact of Isolation and Death Row in Texas Prisons with Nanon M. Williams. The Darkest Hour  “sheds light on the widespread impact of extreme isolation experienced by thousands of incarcerated individuals in Texas prisons — many of whom […]


Community Conversations

TAVP is committed to hosting or participating in conversations, gatherings, and conferences in communities in Texas and beyond to both expand oral history and narrative into the public sphere and activate our archive by encouraging various audiences to engage with the stories of those directly affected by violence. Recent community events include a storytelling circle with families of executed people, a dialogue and peacebuilding gathering with local high school students, and a public conversation with author Susannah Sheffer about her recent book, Fighting for Their Lives: Inside the Experience of Capital Defense Attorneys.

Human Rights Documentation Initiative

The Texas After Violence Project has conducted over one hundred oral history interviews with persons directly affected by murder and the death penalty: surviving family and friends of murder victims, surviving family of executed persons, capital defense trial and habeas attorneys, prosecutors, judges, jurors, wardens, guards, journalists, witnesses to executions, activists, investigators, religious workers, and scholars. Through a partnership with the University of Texas Libraries, many of these audiovisual testimonies are publically available through the Human Rights Documentation Initiative (HRDI), a digital archive that serves as the primary repository for our collection of oral histories and other materials. HRDI is committed to the long-term preservation of fragile and vulnerable records of human rights struggles worldwide, the promotion and secure usage of human rights archival materials, and the advancement of human rights research and advocacy around the world.