The image of the dusty, undisturbed archive has been swept away in response to growing interest across disciplines in the materials they house and the desire to find and make meaning through an engagement with those materials. Archival studies scholars and archivists are developing related theoretical frameworks and practices that recognize that the archives are anything but static. Archival deposits are proliferating, and the architects, practitioners, and scholars engaged with them are scarcely able to keep abreast of them. Archives, archival theory, and archival practice are on the move.
But what of the archives that were once safely housed and have since been lost, or are under threat? What of the urgency that underscores the appeals made on behalf of these archives? As scholars in this volume argue, archives—their materialization, their preservation, and the research produced about them—are moving in a different way: they are involved in an emotionally engaged and charged process, one that acts equally upon archival subjects and those engaged with them. So too do archives at once represent members of various communities and the fields of study drawn to them.
Moving Archives grounds itself in the critical trajectory related to what Sara Ahmed calls “affective economies” to offer fresh insights about the process of archiving and approaching literary materials. These economies are not necessarily determined by ethical impulses, although many scholars have called out for such impulses to underwrite current archival practices; rather, they form the crucial affective contexts for the legitimization of archival caches in the present moment and for future use.
About the author
Linda M. Morra, an associate professor at Bishopâ??s University, specializes in Canadian literature and Canadian studies. Her research focuses on women and the publishing industry in Canada. Her publications include Corresponding Influence: Selected Letters of Emily Carr and Ira Dilworth (2006), [http://www.wlupress.wlu.ca/Catalog/morra.shtml Troubling Tricksters: Revisioning Critical Conversations (co-editor with Deanna Reder, WLU Press, 2010), and an edition of Jane Ruleâ??s autobiography, Taking My Life (2011).
Jessica Schagerlâ??s research focuses on Canadian studies, drawing heavily on archival material; she is also invested in questions of professional concern, including mentoring and the futures of arts and humanities. She is the alumni and development officer for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Western Ontario.
- Winner, Gabrielle Roy Prize
Other titles by Linda M. Morra
On the Other Side(s) of 150
Untold Stories and Critical Approaches to History, Literature, and Identity in Canada
Chronicling the Days
Dispatches from a Pandemic
Basements and Attics, Closets and Cyberspace
Explorations in Canadian Women’s Archives
Margaret Laurence and Jack McClelland, Letters
Learn, Teach, Challenge
Approaching Indigenous Literatures
Marshall McLuhan, Wyndham Lewis, Wilfred Watson, and Sheila Watson
Revisioning Critical Conversations
At the Speed of Light There is Only Illumination
A Reappraisal of Marshall McLuhan
A Mingling of Contrarieties