Interrogating the Archive

Thursday 18 July, 10.00 – 18.00

This one day conference, organised by the Birkbeck Institute for Social Research (BISR) will consider questions of authorship and power within the archive, and how the materials contained within them can be mobilised from their static locations and repurposed within academic, artistic, radical or imaginary frameworks.

A series of short talks, panel discussions and performances given by academics, students and archival professionals will consider archival materials from various perspectives; asking what is at stake in instituting an archives, how archives might be repurposed as political acts, and the ethical dilemmas of dealing with sensitive sources. A series of short performances from current and former Birkbeck students will explore the ways in which archives can be created, imagined, and used to empower marginalised groups. Finally, a group of archival specialists from Bishopsgate Institute, George Padmore Institute, MayDay Rooms and Wellcome Collection will each explore their individual collections and the ways these can be used in academic research and beyond.

Attendees are asked to apply to attend the workshop and visit with one of the four archives, as best fits their academic research and interests. Applications should include a brief outline of their research and some details as to why the workshop and visit would be beneficial to them. We ask that these applications do not exceed 700 words. Places are limited, so we advise early application. Students will be required to give a brief presentation (5-10 minutes) during the first workshop to explain their research and interests to their peers and the archival specialist present.

Further information

  • Further information is available below
  • Please register via the event page here.

Author: ubcg56b

Graduate Research School Manager

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