19.740 call for papers: Image (&) Narrative on the digital archive

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of Willard McCarty willard.mccarty_at_kcl.ac.uk>
Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2006 07:01:34 +0100

               Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 19, No. 740.
       Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                     Submit to: humanist_at_princeton.edu

         Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2006 06:54:50 +0100
         From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty_at_kcl.ac.uk>
         Subject: call for papers: Image (&) Narrative on the digital archive

[From Jan Baetens <jan.baetens_at_arts.kuleuven.be>]

Dear Humanist,

I would like to post the following call for papers:

Image (&) Narrative (www.imageandnarrative.be), a peer reviewed,
online journal published by the University of Leuven (Belgium), is
inviting submissions for a special issue on:

The Digital Archive

In human societies memory is organized in two basic forms: material
forms (tablets, paintings, books, etc.) on the one hand and
immaterial forms (oral history, dances, songs, etc.) on the other
hand. These forms represent two organizing principles that function
in different ways. While material forms of memory are fixed,
immaterial ways of remembering are fluid. Tablets, paintings, texts,
& are affirmative and stable, while conversations, oral traditions,
... have a more ambiguous or dialogic' character. Especially in
western societies, the first organizing principle has gained more
authority. Material memory' has laid the foundation of modern
bureaucracy and of every industrial or post-industrial company.
Contracts and laws are the most evident examples of material memory'
which guarantee the relative stability necessary for every modern
organization. In this context, the classical archive often functions
as a library of proof' on which societies can always rely when
appointments are discussed, rules are violated or facts are disputed.
In other words, the classical archive as a reservoir of material
memory is one of the crucial foundations that have made modern
society & modern.

The introduction of digital databases transforms the way Western
societies use their archives. The most visible result of digitization
is of course the fact that the classical archive, once digitized,
becomes a more fluid one. Although it may not become as instable as
conversations, oral history or urban legends, the possibility of
permanent transformation is real. As soon as new data enter a
networked archive, the database can reorganize itself just as oral
legends transform over time when the storyteller or the audience
changes. At least we can say that the digital archive is a strange
hybrid between material and immaterial memory machines. But in the
digital era classical' archives do not disappear. Just as the
paperless' office has proven a fiction (utopian or dystopian,
following the sources), the world of archives is not one-dimensional.
Classical and digital archives coexist, not always pacifically, their
respective logics, areas and scopes interact, and their users have to
switch permanently from one type of archive to another.

Deadline for submissions: 1st of November 2006
Please contact:

Jan Baetens

Instituut voor Culturele Studies &
Lieven Gevaert Research Centre for Photography and Visual Studies
Faculteit Letteren K.U.Leuven
Blijde Inkomststraat 21
B-3000 Leuven
tel: 32 (0)16 32 48 46, fax: 32 (0)16 32 50 68

Les Impressions Nouvelles

Dr Willard McCarty | Reader in Humanities Computing | Centre for
Computing in the Humanities | King's College London | Kay House, 7
Arundel Street | London WC2R 3DX | U.K. | +44 (0)20 7848-2784 fax:
-2980 || willard.mccarty_at_kcl.ac.uk www.kcl.ac.uk/humanities/cch/wlm/
Received on Sun Apr 30 2006 - 19:23:31 EDT

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