The Gerald Aylmer Seminar 2016 will consider the Experience of the Archive. It will focus on the critical questions which surround the individual, personal and community experience of the archive and the ways in which that experience affects how the archive is understood and used. Just as the production of the archive is not neutral or static, the use of the archive is a matter not only of the content found there but also of the process by which the archive is experienced. In a digital world, the experience of ‘reading’ the archive may be very different from the traditional engagement which required a scholar to travel through time and space to read the archive. Is there something of the physical experience of being in the archive which is still valuable? What other insights does the experience of the archive bring?
Following the keynote by Professor Carolyn Steedman `In the Archive, Hearing Things: Lord Mansfield’s Voices’, the seminar will offer four thematic sessions in which speakers will address issues from multiple archival and scholarly perspectives. Speakers include established partnerships between historians and archivists, such as historian Filippo de Vivo and archivist Claudia Salmini who have collaborated on the ERC-funded AR.C.H.I.ves project on early modern Italy. Other speakers will reflect on the experience of the archive from disciplinary perspectives including biography, literary and feminist studies, and ways in which the archivist experiences the archive.
Speakers include: Maryanne Dever (University of Technology, Sydney), Jenny Haynes (Wellcome), Michael Hughes (Bodleian Library, University of Oxford) & Filippo de Vivo (Birkbeck, University of London) .
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