October Readings

Welcome to October! Since autumn always conjures up images of back to school, graduate archival education seems a fitting theme for this month. I’ve recently formed a deep interest in the history and development of archival education. The two presidential addresses we’ll read this month were delivered 40 years apart.

Christopher Crittenden, 1948/The Archivist as a Public Servant http://archivists.metapress.com/content/v857q42760064548/fulltext.pdf
— This address shows the marked turn from archivist as historian to archivist as part of an archival profession. Although there isn’t a lot here on graduate education, the shift to thinking of archivists as archivists first, as opposed to a flavor of historians, is really important. This sets the stage for later debates on whether archivists should receive training as historians or librarians (or as archivists!), and whether archives-land had enough unique characteristics to constitute its own profession.

William Joyce, 1988/Archival Education: Two Fables http://archivists.metapress.com/content/p4j85330k171023g/fulltext.pdf
— This address provides a good overview of what the general archival education environment looked like in the late 1980s. There was a major re-examination of American archival education at that time, particularly because Canadian archivists had established a distinct graduate archival education program. It also touches on professional certification, the question of whether archivists are part of a distinct profession, and the role of archival theory.

Extra credit for you over-achievers:
Ruth Helmuth, 1981/Education for American Archivists http://archivists.metapress.com/content/x66537344mh24677/fulltext.pdf
Frank Burke, 1992/Let Sleeping Dogmas Lie http://archivists.metapress.com/content/w628m34076646275/fulltext.pdf

I will post some expanded thoughts next week to encourage discussion, and we will have our monthly tweetup to discuss the readings on Wednesday, October 29, from 8-9pm Eastern.

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3 thoughts on “October Readings

  1. Pingback: October Group Discussion: Archival education and identity | Reading Archivists

  2. Reblogged this on Archivasaurus and commented:
    Check out this month’s entry from the Reading Archivists group (an informal study group that examines historic speeches from SAA presidents). October’s readings deal with archival education and identity, a great follow-up to the archival education panel and forum at the 2014 SAA Annual Meeting .

  3. Pingback: SAA 2017 Candidate Interview: Samantha Winn | SNAP Section

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