Opinions

 

Category: Archival Platform

Archives and the “Clouds”: Legacy, Accountability and Structure

Graham Dominy’s blog examines the state of the archives system in South Africa in terms of its constitutional, legal and administrative mandates. This post is s based on a seminar presented at the Public Affairs Research Institute at the University of the Witwatersrand in May 2013.

Boxes in the Bantustan Basement :The Trajectories and Possibilities of the Lebowa Archive

Laura Phillips visits the archives of the former Lebowa and concludes that the disorder she finds there is the product of a very particular set of historical and administrative circumstances.

#AskACurator and African collections

Harriet Deacon comments on the excitement and silences of #AskACurator day on 18 September 2013.

Why don’t all museums and archives want to open up like the Rijksmuseum?

Harriet Deacon looks at the advantages of and barriers to promoting wider digital access to heritage collections.

Forever Etched in my Memory: The funeral poster that haunted my childhood

This evocative post by Xolelwa Kashe-Katiya’s reminds us of the power of the archive and the opportunities that digitisation offers to make fragments of the past broadly accessible in the present.

Future archives: problematizing digital archives

Carolien Greyling considers the the benefit of digitizating archives, especially for making material more easily accessible, but wonders if the cost of this will, in fact, keep these resources out-of reach.

Archives in the Future

Goa Gaberone think ahead and shares her wish list for archives with us!

What is still wrong with the Protection of State Information Bill?

Verne Harris reflects on the Protection of State Information Bill, identifies four fundamental flaws and concludes that the way forward is to withdraw the Bill in its current form and start from scratch.

Comment on the revised draft White Paper on Arts, Culture and Heritage

The document offers a very narrow reading of the role and significance of archives. More specifically: it fails to address the vital role of the archives in a democratic society; it loses sight of the role of archives in re-imaging the past; and it does not address the critical role that archives play in building social cohesion

The Liberation archives and human rights in South Africa

Vuyani Booi suggests that liberation archives are not just mere records to be studied for historical purposes and argues that they may be used to build a responsible citizenry.

The myth of the struggle?

Reflecting on Freedom Day celebrations, Dineo Skosana notes that analysis and understanding of these relations, the multilayers of the struggle, how colonial and apartheid policy incessantly shaped the struggle, and what the end result – freedom – meant to people at the time and now may help better understand contemporary national and local politics in South Africa.

Histories Lost?

Carolien Greyling comments on the parlous state of Mpumalanga’s Municipal archives and the repercussions this has for the future.

Archives and Records Management: striking a balance

National and provincial archives are tasked with two key responsibilities: “the proper management and care of the records of governmental bodies” and “the preservation and use of a national archival heritage”. Jo-Anne Duggan considers the records relating to the change of street names in cape Town and concludes that when resources are scare and capacity limited it’s critical to strike a balance between these competing priorities

To whose stories will our archives be witness?

Harriet Deacon ponders on the stories told in South African galleries, museum exhibitions, archives and national heritage sites and wonders if there are imbalances and how they have been dealt with, and what new heritage forms have been acknowledged, and why.

Genres of the trace: memory, archives and trouble

An personal anecdote, extracted from a paper by Verne Harris in which he addresses the troubled and troubling relationship between archives and memory.