The Department of Information Studies and The HIVE at Curtin University welcome Dr. Ricky Punzalan from the University of Maryland, College Park to give a talk on the ethics of digitisation and display of content from ethnographic archives.
Title: Ethnographic Photographs & the Ethics of Display: Possibilities in the Age of Virtual Reunification
Libraries, archives, and museums are making great strides to digitize their archival holdings. The availability of digital surrogates has encouraged the creation of digital projects that facilitate collections management and content delivery. Virtual reunification offers possibilities to create and assemble digital versions of archives, artifacts, rare books, manuscripts, and other literary or artistic works of common origin that have been geographically dispersed for historical, political, or cultural reasons. Cultural heritage scholars have noted the potential of virtual reunification for facilitating “digital repatriation” and in enabling “cultural diplomacy.” However, access to ethnographic archives presents unique ethical concerns given their sensitive content and context of creation.
In this presentation, I will discuss the case of Dean C. Worcester’s ethnographic photographs of the U.S. colonial Philippines and the issues that hinder attempts to provide consolidated access to this dispersed collection. Worcester served as a U.S. administrator in the Philippines from 1899 to 1913. The photographs, which were taken during “ethnological surveys” to document the Indigenous communities of the islands, are currently dispersed among ten libraries, museums and archives in North America and Europe. As cultural heritage institutions facilitate virtual reunification projects, the ethics of online displays and the digital returns of Indigenous images pose concerns for scholars and Native communities.
This presentation will investigate some of the ways in which the desire to provide access contends with respectful representation.
Ricardo L. Punzalan is an assistant professor of archives and digital curation at the College of Information Studies, affiliate faculty in the Department of Anthropology, and co-director of Museum Scholarship and Material Culture program at the University of Maryland, College Park. In 2016, he received an early-career grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to study and develop strategies to assess the impact of access to digitized ethnographic archives for academic and Indigenous community users. He also examines ‘virtual reunification’ as a strategy to provide integrated access to dispersed ethnographic archival images online. He leads a team of postdoctoral scholars and masters’ fellows to enhance agricultural data curation efforts at the U.S. National Agricultural Library. He holds a Ph.D. in Information as well as graduate certificates in Science, Technology, and Society (STS) and Museum Studies from the University of Michigan. He previously taught on the faculty of the University of the Philippines School of Library and Information Studies. His articles have been published in leading library and archives academic journals, including the Library Quarterly, American Archivist, Archivaria, andArchival Science. In 2012, he received the Hugh A. Taylor Prize from the Association of Canadian Archivists for his co-authored article in Archivariaon users and uses of digitized photographic archives.
Please note that food and drink are not permitted in The HIVE, however attendees are welcome to join us for a casual BYO lunch following the presentation (location to be announced on the day).
Registration is essential as seats are strictly limited.
A conference to be held at Deakin University’s Burwood Campus, Monday 13th and Tuesday 14th November, 2017.
Anyone is welcome to attend but please note that presentations are by invitation.
- Recent scholarship has marked a turn away from treating archives as repositories of factual knowledge to a focus on sites of archival practices and knowledge production. In the words of Ann Laura Stoler, archives provide access not only to records of rule, they are places where ‘the force of writing’ ‘the ‘feel of documents’, ‘lettered governance’ and ‘written traces of colonial lives’ all come together. Archives in this sense, come to be understood as places where social categories are produced, where ways of relating to governed subjects are monitored. Archives are instantiations of ‘active force with violent effects’ (Stoler). As Antoinette Burton contends, all archives are ‘figured’; they all have ‘dynamic relationships, not just to the past and the present, but to the fate of regimes, the physical environment, the serendipity of bureaucrats, and the care and neglect of archivists as well’. (Burton)
Critical interest in archives also draws attention to the transformative effects of digitisation, to contradictory forces that allow archived materials to be accessed outside of the material (in both architectural and paper-based) forms that house ‘originals’, through online databases and virtual museums, while also making the management of collections precariously vulnerable to shifting regimes of governmental support. In the digital era there is special concern for the fragility of ‘originals’ and for the looming crisis of technological obsolescence.
While archival research has traditionally been the purview of historians, since the 1980s the postcolonial politics of community engagement and repatriation have triggered a variety of new kinds of research engagements between institutions, community stakeholders and scholars, often resulting in new forms of archival production.
Indigenous communities especially —historically subject to sustained archival attention — call for decentring and decolonising practices to transform institutions.
Informed by histories of the production of colonial knowledge, and responding to new and interdisciplinary directions in archival theory and research (led by Ann Laura Stoler, Jeannette Bastian, Terry Cook, Antoinette Burton and others) this conference will bring together researchers, practitioners, industry partners and communities to discuss the critical elements of working with and through archives in the present. We also hope to include artists who are responding to the archive creatively, such as Indigenous performance makers and artists.
This two day conference will interrogate the history of knowledge production, the practice of archiving and the process of working with, along, or against the grain of the archive. It will be structured around the following ideas:
1. History of the idea of archives and their role in colonisation and the production of colonial knowledge
2. Different approaches to dealing with the power asymmetry within the archives: working along and against the archival grain
3. Democratising and decolonising the archive
4. Politics and processes of digitisation
We also welcome papers that engage with the following themes:
- Politics and power of colonial archives
- Histories, biographies and geographies of archives
- Materiality of archives
- Inscriptive practices
- Mediations within the archive
- Non-western archives
- Counter archives
- Indigenous archives
- Archives in the landscape/environment
- Digital archives and the process of digitisation
Keynote Speakers include:
Professor Jeannette Bastian, Simmons School of Library and Information Science, Boston
Professor Tony Ballantyne, University of Otago, NZ
Professor Lynette Russell, Monash Indigenous Studies Centre, Monash
Stephen Kinnane, Nulungu Research Institute, WA
Dr Chris Owen, University of Western Australia
Dr Rachel Buchanan, Curator, Germaine Greer archive, University of Melbourne
Rsvp regarding your interest and availability ASAP
Friday 29th September 2017 Abstracts (300 words) and short bios (100-200 words) to be submitted
Abstracts, bios, and any queries can be directed to:
Tiffany Shellam firstname.lastname@example.org
+61 3 9244 3943
Joanna Cruickshank email@example.com
+61 3 5227 2510
Public Lecture with Verne Harris
Tim Winton Lecture Theatre, Building 213:101, Curtin University, Bentley
Time: 3:45pm for a 4:00pm start
RSVP: MCCAAdmin@curtin.edu.au by Wednesday 13 September
The Centre for Human Rights Education and the Department of Information Studies at Curtin University would like to invite you to a public lecture by award-winning South African archivist and scholar, Verne Harris. This lecture will explore the role of archive and memory work in struggles for social justice within a frame set up by these questions:
- What does Nelson Mandela’s legacy mean in South Africa today?
- Is democracy an oppressive apparatus?
- Does whiteness still exercise hegemony globally?
- Is there hope for the human project?
About Verne Harris
Director of Archive and Dialogue at the Nelson Mandela Foundation, Verne Harris was Mandela’s archivist from 2004 to 2013. He is an honorary research fellow with the University of Cape Town, participated in a range of structures which transformed South Africa’s apartheid archival landscape, including the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and is a former Deputy Director of the National Archives. Widely published, he is probably best-known for leading the editorial team on the best-seller Nelson Mandela: Conversations with Myself. He is the recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University of Cordoba in Argentina (2014), archival publication awards from Australia, Canada and South Africa, and both his novels were short-listed for South Africa’s M-Net Book Prize. He has served on the Boards of Archival Science, the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, the Freedom of Expression Institute, and the South African History Archive.
The Remarkable 1960s: reflections on history, political activism, and the 1967 Referendum by Ann Curthoys.
This lecture explores Australia’s politics of race leading up to the 1967 Referendum. The referendum aimed to change the Australian constitution in order to grant the Commonwealth the power for the first time to make laws specifically concerning Indigenous people and to include them in the census. It was passed by 90.77% of voters. In exploring the historical context for the Referendum, I look first at the political upheavals concerning race in the 1960s, with special attention to the Freedom Ride of 1965, in which I was involved. I trace the broader international influences on Australian racial politics. I also look further back in time to explore why it was that constitution-making in Australia, whether for self-governing colonies in the British Empire or for the new nation of Australia in 1901, so consistently involved visions of self-determination from which Indigenous people were excluded. Finally, I ask, what is the legacy of these histories for Australia today?
Ann Curthoys is an honorary professor at UWA and Emeritus Professor at ANU. She has written widely on aspects of Australian history, and on questions of historical theory and writing. Her books include Freedom Ride: A Freedom rider Remembers (2002); Is History Fiction? (with John Docker, 2005); How to Write History that People Want to Read (with Ann McGrath, 2009). She has edited many collections of essays. Her latest book, written jointly with Jessie Mitchell, Taking Liberty: Indigenous Rights and Settler Self-Government, is currently in press with Cambridge University Press.
After the Referendum… the emotional things changed by Shino Konishi.
Indigenous memories’ Since the late 1990s a number of historians have argued against the ‘myth’ that the 1967 Referendum granted Aboriginal people the right to vote, pointing out that the Referendum only concerned enabling the Commonwealth Government to legislate for Aboriginal people, and including Indigenous people in the census. Yet, as Frances Peters-Little observes, the Referendum meant so much more for Aboriginal people, and is remembered as the time we became citizens in our own country. In this presentation, I will build on her work, exploring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s memories of the 1967 Referendum, and in particular, the way emotions imbue these memories.
Shino Konishi is a descendant of the Yawuru people of Broome. She is a historian based at UWA, and is a chief investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions. Her books include The Aboriginal Male in the Enlightenment World (2012) and the co-edited collections Indigenous Intermediaries: New Perspectives on the Exploration Archives (2015) and Brokers and Boundaries: Colonial Exploration in Indigenous Territory (2016). She is now beginning a new ARC project on Indigenous biography
Great Southern Room, 4th Floor, Alexander Library Building, Perth Cultural Centre
A public lecture by Tony Ballantyne, Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Colonial Culture, University of Otago
The links between British empire building and its shifting relationships with Europe have frequently been overlooked by historians, in part because they have been seen as two fundamentally distinct fields of inquiry.
Using the debates around Brexit as it departure point, this talk explores some of the key connections between the project of empire building and Britain’s engagements with Europe, tracing some key points of convergence from the 1760s on. But it will also explore the shifting terrain of recent historiography, tracing the ways in which Europe and empire have figured within British historical writing since the 1970s and how those relationships have also figured in important work from the former settler colonies.
Tony Ballantyne is a Professor of History and Pro-Vice Chancellor Humanities at the University of Otago, where he is also a Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Colonial Culture. He has published widely on the cultural history of the British Empire and his most recent sole-authored book is the award-winning Entanglements of Empire: Missionaries, Maori and the Question of the Body (Duke University Press, 2015).
Fox Lecture Theatre, Arts, UWA
Reserve your seat: http://www.ias.uwa.edu.au/lectures/ballantyne
Professor Alistair Paterson will present new research on the history of the Northwest and explore what the colonial coastal frontier was like for Aboriginal communities facing the extreme challenges of European settlement. Bringing together archival sources, collected objects held in museums with historical archaeological fieldwork, a new regional analysis will be revealed producing a new history of the Northwest, 100 years since J.S. Battye’s History of the Northwest.
Great Southern Room, SLWA
It's not a CTW project, but promises to be interesting anyway :)
Come along to a talk by CTW Chief Investigator Jenny Gregory. The Emeritus Professor builds on her doctorate from 30 years ago to reveal how Dalkeith and Nedlands became what they are.
A film screening followed by a panel discussion with Professor Andrea Witcomb, Deakin University; Professor Ben Smith, UWA; Dr John Taylor, UWA; Rebecca Repper, Oxford University and UWA.
Join us for this powerful award-winning film on the war against culture, and the battle to save it.
Theatre Auditorium, The University Club of Western Australia
Audience: General Public, Faculty/Staff, Students, Alumni
Agenda: -- oral history program -- Royals engagement plan -- Digitisation prospects -- finalised data management plan -- KEE Disruptive Technology and Collecting Institutions and partnership -- dates.... -- Publication plan and internal reports published to CTW web site -- protocols
Al, Andrea, Jenny, Kate, Denise, Baige & Dirima