Archived Course: Digital Archives + Institutional Memory
Building on the critical historical, theoretical, and technical foundation we’ve built in the fall “Archives, Libraries & Databases” seminar, in this spring studio we’ll put our theory into practice by working with The New School’s Libraries and Archives to consider how the digital archives do, and perhaps could better, reflect and construct the institution’s memory and identity. We’ll look behind the scenes at how the Archives processes its collections, and how metadata and finding aids are created. Then, using the unique perspectives and tools of Media Studies – a field that’s far too infrequently in conversation with Library and Information Science, despite their many shared interests – we’ll examine how we might work with the Archives to make these archival conventions more dynamic and responsive. We’ll reimagine the “interface” to the archives by prototyping dynamic finding aids and platforms for highlighting and recontextualizing noteworthy archival material – particularly material regarding the history of media study and media-making at The New School (a history that includes one the first academic classes in film studies, a long tradition in sound studies, the innovative Center for Understanding Media, etc.). And in the process we’ll also aim to help the Archives better understand how diverse user groups might engage with its collections and further animate the archives.