User:Andre Castro/research/1.2/notesArchiveAspirantion

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Archive and Aspiration - Arjun Appadurai

My Interest:

  • archive made by use
  • online archive: allows users to consult, edit, contribute and distribute it

humanists perspective on the archive:

  • sacralized as the site of the past
  • a place with role of guardship of the document
  • (the archive is built on accidents that produce traces)
  • design and intention come from the uses we make of the archive, not from the archive itself


  • asked about the designs through which the traces are produced
  • archive not just a way to collect the accidental, but traces of collective memory
  • Documentation as intervention

Documentation as intervention

  • archiving:
    • part of a collective project
    • product of anticipation of collective memory
    • An aspiration rather than a recollection
  • archive as work of imagination, of some sort of social project

Electronic Archive:

"In the age of the electronic archive, with the capability of interactive users to more easily enter and edit the archive, and for the archive itself to be expanded by the nature and distribution of its users, the active, interventionist and open-ended collective building of archives is a growing reality"

  • online electronic archive: allows users to consult, edit, contribute and distribute it

"Instead of presenting itself as the accidental repository of default communities,(like the nation), the archive returns to its more general status of being a deliberate site for the production of anticipated memories by intentional communities" (p.17)

[ users, an alternative to media companies. According to "Copy" by Parrika media companies attempt to limit the circulation of media products (eg: ipod), disregarding their digital, networked nature. Users on the other end understand and make use of the characteristics of digital products]

  • material manifestation:
    • archive as intentional collective project;
    • site for the production of anticipated memories.

"these virtual collectivities build memories out of connectivity" p.17

archive and migrant identity

  • memory is hyper-valued
  • (migration - accompanied by confusion on what was lost, and needs to be recovered or remembered)p.21
  • this confusion leads to a effort to archives
  • migrants using web to find,debate and consolidate their memory traces into a more plausible narrative
  • the indignity of the migrant can be compensated, and the vulnerability of his/her narrative can be protected in cyberspace
  • archive as place of debate and desire

"the disporic archive is an intensified form of what characterizes all popular archives: it is a place to sort out the meaning of memory in relationships to the demands of cultural reproduction "p.23

  • migrants: archive as map for identity building

"The archive is a search for the memories that count and not a home for memories with preordained significance"