Blogs

The Committee on Public Awareness (COPA) is pleased to bring Micaela Blei, PhD, two-time Moth GrandSLAM winner and former Moth director of education, to ARCHIVES*RECORDS 2019 this August in Austin, Texas at the JW Marriott. Blei will be teaching a FREE two-hour  “Storytelling Workshop” on Saturday, August 3 (1:00 PM – 3:00 PM) and hosting a storytelling event, “A Finding Aid to My Soul,” on Sunday, August 4 (8:00 PM – 10:00 PM). Pitch Your Story by June 27 for a chance...
Jun 24, 2019   Archives AWARE!
http://homosaurus.org/ and https://www.digitaltransgenderarchive.net/[1] Reviewed by Brian Watson, Archivist-Historian, and Researcher at the Kinsey Institute Library [PDF Full Text] Homosaurus is a linked data vocabulary used as a controlled vocabulary on the Digital Transgender Archive. Despite this modern form, it has deep historical roots: it is based on the internal thesaurus of Netherland’s International Homo/Lesbian Information Centre & Archives (IHLIA). Two separate institutions—the...
Jun 18, 2019   AA Reviews
This piece is part of our series on archives and popular culture written by Samantha Cross. If you have any ideas for pop culture reviews, or if you’re interested in writing one, please contact the Reviews Portal Coordinator. Samantha Cross is a geek and scholar, so luckily she found a way to combine the two in the form of the POP Archives blog and That Girl with the Curls podcast. Whether it’s interviewing writers and artists about the latest comic book, critiquing box office blockbusters, or...
May 23, 2019   AA Reviews
“LA 92” theatrical and TV release poster. This is the latest entry in our Archives + Audiences series, which features the perspectives of archival audiences – scholars, journalists, filmmakers, artists, activists, and more – for whom archives have been an important part of their life and work.  In this post, we feature Part 2 of COPA member Nick Pavlik’s conversation with Dan Lindsay and Ben Piner about their work on the acclaimed documentary LA 92, which examines the 1992...
May 17, 2019   Archives AWARE!
“LA 92” theatrical and TV release poster. This is the latest entry in our Archives + Audiences series, which features the perspectives of archival audiences – scholars, journalists, filmmakers, artists, activists, and more – for whom archives have been an important part of their life and work.  In this post, we feature Part 1 of COPA member Nick Pavlik’s conversation with Dan Lindsay and Ben Piner about their work on the acclaimed documentary LA 92, which examines the 1992...
May 9, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest post in our There’s an Archivist for That! series, which features examples of archivists working in places you might not expect.  In this entry, COPA member Anna Trammell brings you an interview with Joel Thoreson, Archivist for Management, Reference, and Technology at the Archives of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in Elk Grove Village, Illinois.  Joel Thoreson, Archivist for Management, Reference, and Technology, Archives of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in...
May 2, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest post in our new series Archival Innovators, which aims to raise awareness of the individuals, institutions, and collaborations that are helping to boldly chart the future of the the archives profession and set new precedents for the role of the archivist in society. Helen Selsdon. Photo courtesy of the American Foundation for the Blind. In this installation of Archival Innovators, we bring you an interview with Helen Selsdon, Archivist at the American Foundation for the Blind...
Apr 25, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is a guest post from Andrew Harman, Archivist at the Center for American War Letters Archives at Chapman University. Archives have two main functions: to preserve and to make available materials of historical value.  This is the purpose of an archives and its archivist – the “why” of what we do.  Each are equally important foundations of the profession as well as functions of individual archivists’ daily work. Without preserving materials, there is nothing to make...
Apr 18, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest entry in our series Keeping ArchivesAWARE: News and Highlights, a recurring roundup of some of the latest archives-related news stories, features, commentaries, announcements, and projects that have caught our eye, with links to the original sources. On Al Jazeera, Patrick Gathara argues that the path to colonial reckoning in Africa lies in the return of colonial archives – the “thousands of official records and documents that trace the history of subjugation,...
Apr 11, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest post in our There’s an Archivist for That! series, which features examples of archivists working in places you might not expect.  In this post, COPA member Vince Lee brings you an interview with Lilly Carrel, Archivist at the Menil Archives, part of the Menil Collection in Houston, Texas. Archivist Lilly Carrel outside of the Menil Archives. Courtesy of The Menil Collection, Houston. Photo: Anthony Flores. VL: How did you get your gig? LC: I joined the Menil Archives in July...
Apr 4, 2019   Archives AWARE!
In January 2019, the Society of American Archivists launched Season 1 of its new podcast, Archives In Context.  Created primarily by members of SAA’s Publications Board and American Archivist Editorial Board, Archives In Context offers “in-depth and dynamic conversations about archives and the people behind them.”  Naturally, we on SAA’s Committee on Public Awareness were very excited for the release of this podcast — as it dovetails quite nicely with our goal of...
Mar 28, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest entry in our Archives + Audiences series, which features the perspectives of archival audiences – scholars, journalists, filmmakers, artists, activists, and more – for whom archives have been an important part of their life and work.  In this post, ArchivesAWARE brings you an interview with Washington Post journalist Dan Lamothe on his work on WaPo‘s  Letters from War, a podcast about the World War II combat experiences of the Eyde brothers of Rockford, Illinois.  The...
Mar 20, 2019   Archives AWARE!
This is the latest post in our new series Archival Innovators, which aims to raise awareness of the individuals, institutions, and collaborations that are helping to boldly chart the future of the the archives profession and set new precedents for the role of the archivist in society. Valerie Metzler In this installation of Archival Innovators, SAA Committee on Public Awareness (COPA) member Sami Norling interviews Valerie A. Metzler, independent Archivist/Historian. On hearing from Valerie...
Mar 14, 2019   Archives AWARE!
Since September 2018, Davia Nelson and Nikki Silva of The Kitchen Sisters have featured archivists in their series The Keepers. In December, Committee on Public Awareness chair Caryn Radick spoke with Davia Nelson. This post shares the final Part 3 of that conversation (see Part 1 here and Part 2 here). Remarks have been edited for length and clarity from a transcript of the original telephone interview. CR: Recently, archivists have started doing podcasts. What advice would you give them about...
Mar 7, 2019   Archives AWARE!
by Michelle Light, SAA Vice President / President-Elect Dear Members of the Society of American Archivists, Recently I accepted an incredible opportunity to serve as the Director of the Special Collections Directorate at the Library of Congress beginning May 28, 2019. I’ll lead seven organizational units responsible for the Library’s unparalleled collections of unique or rare, unpublished and published items: the Geography and Map Division, Manuscript Division, Music Division, Prints and...
Mar 4, 2019   Off the Record