''Archives That Matter'' (2019)

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Archives That Matter, special issue of NTIK, eds. Daniela Agostinho, Katrine Dirckinck-Holmfeld, Karen Louisa Grova Søilen 8.2 (2019).


archives from Virgin Islands removed to Denmark, colonizing country -- dislocating shared histories (example of textile samples ordered from Gold Coast of Ghana)

"digitization had to be complemented -- if not challenged -- by other practices and epistemologies" (3)

"the notionn of data is deeply embedded in colonial histories of quantification that have a defining movment in the transatlantic enslavement trade" (4)

exploring "the potentials of intersecting digital humanities with cultural studies as well as artistic and arts-based research" (4)

"while mass digitisation of archival records carries a promise of easier access to the archives, it also gives rise to ethical, political, aesthetic and methodological questions concerning the access, dissemination and reuse of sensitive and contested material. With Archives that Matter we thus wished to begin a conversation about emerging digital colonial archives, pointing to the limitations as well as possibilities that digitization of colonial material gives rise to" (4)

"what are the new sites of forgetfulness and silence created by the digitization of the colonial archives? How to do justice to the subjects, histories and experiences registered and unregistered by these archives? What kinds of materialities are lost and potentially newly found in processes of digitization? What are the implications of giving and precluding access through digital means, and how can meaningful and socially just access be envisioned? How to repair the connections broken by colonialism and archival knowledge? And finally, how to create shared infrastructures for re-use of the archival material that fosters radical, creative, decolonial and technological collaborations across communities?" (4)

what are "shared" histories

Sedgwick 2003, "texxture" with two xx's -- an object dense with info on how it came into being

"With archival records, we might think that analog archival records carry the history of their own making in their very texture. The violence is embedded and embodied in the very scrap of cloth. In the seal. In the stroke of the pen. Information withheld. We only have a name – a misnaming. With the digitization of that object, some of that information might be lost, flattened, compressed, pixelated." (6)

Steyerl 2013 and notion of "poor image" -- image also have texture that might be folded into the digital cycles of dislocation/displacement

"If we think the digital archive as matter, then the material is composed of zeros and ones stored in electric circuits. Those circuits are no less material than the ledges that store archival records"

"while we argue above that digital files carry in their texxture the history of their making, this texxture, we contend, is not complete without the contexxt from which they emanate and in which they belong. Tihs contexxt comes to constitute a form of materiality that needs to be restituted to these records."

"smuggling" in printed photographs back to Virgin Islands