Archival Community

Place is Bigger than Metadata: Country as Record

Country = Record. Any landscape represents an archive of the interaction between humans and that environment. This interaction is bi-directional; just as humans influence the environment, the environment influences humans and studying the environment (through whatever method), can help us to understand this interaction. Within this blogpost I consider the nature of archaeology as a… Read More Place is Bigger than Metadata: Country as Record

Archival Community, Indigenous Australia, Research

Place is Bigger than Metadata: Maps as Colonial Tools

What maps and place names are not: Passive Neutral, or Accurate Instead, maps and place names are both the legacy and the tool of continuing colonisation.  Consider this; each time that someone looks at a map of Australia and sees Wurrundjeri country being described as ‘Melbourne’, has the space once again been colonised? An understanding… Read More Place is Bigger than Metadata: Maps as Colonial Tools

Archival Community, Research

How Archival Practitioners can do Research

Broadly speaking, research is a “goal-directed problem-solving activity” (Bruce Archer, 1965). When I first read this definition I thought “well hell, that means every person is engaging in research everyday”. The main difference between a practitioner and a researcher appeared to be that one did research in an informal way and the other formalised it… Read More How Archival Practitioners can do Research

Archival Community, Human Rights

Being an Activist Archivist

The Australian Society of Archivists’ 2017 conference explored the theme of ‘Diverse Worlds’ and had an element of activism throughout. The conference featured two keynotes passionate about decolonising the archival space (Jarrett Drake and Verne Harris) and had a strong Indigenous Australian focus. The conference reinforced Cassie Findlay’s view that: “[Archivist/recordkeepers] have a unique view… Read More Being an Activist Archivist

Archival Community

Is the Materiality of the Archive its Power?

In my last blogpost I examined ‘The Power of the Archive’ and concluded that records themselves predominantly don’t hold inherent power, but are assigned power through interactions with people. I concluded that the only inherent power of the archives lies in their materiality. Thank you to everyone who engaged in the resulting conversation. You definitely prompted… Read More Is the Materiality of the Archive its Power?