07 July 2020

BOOK: David A. WALLACE et al., eds., Archives, Recordkeeping and Social Justice (London: Routledge, 2020). ISBN 9781472483881, 120.00 GBP

(Source: Routledge)

Routledge is publishing a new book on archival social justice and impact.


Archives, Recordkeeping, and Social Justice expands the burgeoning literature on archival social justice and impact. Illuminating how diverse factors shape the relationship between archives, recordkeeping systems, and recordkeepers, this book depicts struggles for different social justice objectives.

Discussions and debates about social justice are playing out across many disciplines, fields of practice, societal sectors, and governments, and yet one dimension cross-cutting these actors and engagement spaces has remained unexplored: the role of recordkeeping and archiving. To clarify and elaborate this connection, this volume provides a rigorous account of the engagement of archives and records—and their keepers—in struggles for social justice. Drawing upon multidisciplinary praxis and scholarship, contributors to the volume examine social justice from historical and contemporary perspectives and promote impact methodologies that align with culturally responsive, democratic, Indigenous, and transformative assessment. Underscoring the multiplicity of transformative social justice impacts influenced by recordmaking, recordkeeping, and archiving, the book presents nine case studies from around the world that link the past to the present and offer pathways towards a more just future.

Archives, Recordkeeping, and Social Justice will be an essential reading for researchers and students engaged in the study of archives, truth and reconciliation processes, social justice, and human rights. It should also be of great interest to archivists, records managers, and information professionals.


David A. Wallace is Clinical Associate Professor at the School of Information, University of Michigan. He is editor of “Archives and the Ethics of Memory Construction” (2011); co-editor of Archives and the Public Good: Accountability and Records in Modern Society (2002); and series technical editor for 12 volumes of the National Security Archive’s The Making of U.S. Policy series (1989–1992).
Wendy M. Duff is a Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Information, University of Toronto. Her most recent research has focused on the emotional responses to archives. Recently, she has conducted impact studies of two different community  archives, the Ontario Jewish Archives and the Living Archives on Eugenics in Western Canada.
Renée Saucier is an Archivist at the Archives of Ontario and a volunteer at The ArQuives: Canada’s LGBTQ2+ Archives. She has a graduate degree in information studies with a specialisation in archives and records management. Her paper “Medical Cartography in Ontario, 1890–1920” won the Association of Canadian Archivists’ Gordon Dodds Prize.
Andrew Flinn is a Reader in Archival Studies and Oral History at University College London, a member of the UK Community Archives and Heritage Group and author of a number of papers relating to community-led and counter archives, including “Working with the past: making history of struggle part of the struggle” in Reflections on Knowledge, Learning and Social Movements (eds Aziz & Vally, 2018).


Section 1
Chapter 1: Introduction to Archives, Recordkeeping and Social Justice
Renée Saucier and David A. Wallace
Chapter 2: Defining the Relationship between Archives and Social Justice
David A. Wallace
Chapter 3: Methodologies for Archival Impact Studies
Wendy M. Duff and Michelle Caswell
Section 2
Preface to Section Two: Categorizations and Patterns in the Case Studies
Renée Saucier
Chapter 4: Archives, Records, and Land Restitution in South Africa
Anthea Josias
Chapter 5: "Hang Onto These Words:" Aboriginal Title and the Social Meanings of Archival Custody
Raymond Frogner
Chapter 6: "All I Want To Know Is Who I Am": Archival Justice for Australian Care Leavers
Joanne Evans, Frank Golding, Cate O’Neill, Rachel Tropea
Chapter 7: Justice for the 96!: The Impact of Archives in the Fight for Justice for the 96 Victims of the Hillsborough Disaster
Andrew Flinn and Wendy M. Duff
Chapter 8: Social Justice and Historical Accountability in Latin America: Access to the Records of the Truth Commissions in Chile
Joel A. Blanco-Rivera
Chapter 9: Documenting the Fight for the City: The Impact of Activist Archives on Anti-Gentrification Campaigns
Susan Pell
Chapter 10: Social Justice Struggles for Rights, Equality and Identity: The Role of Lesbian and Gay Archives
Rebecka Taves Sheffield
Chapter 11: Social Justice and Hearing Voices: Co-Constructing an Archive of Mental Health Recovery
Anna Sexton, Stuart Baker-Brown, Peter Bullimore, Dolly Sen and Andrew Voyce
Chapter 12: Archives "Act Back": Re-configuring Palestinian Archival Constellations and Visions of Social Justice
Beverley Butler
Chapter 13: Conclusion
David A. Wallace, Wendy M. Duff and Andrew Flinn

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