Representation: Hearing Voices in the (Counter-)Archive?

In a series of four webinars, spread over the fall of 2021 and the spring of 2022, four international leading experts will talk about the archive of the future. After each lecture there will be plenty of time to ask questions and share experiences. Each lecture stands alone. You choose which and how many lectures to attend.

Thursday, April 28, 2022, 3:00 – 4:30 pm CEST | Representation: Hearing Voices in the (Counter-)Archive? With: Andrew Flinn, Reader in Archival Studies and Oral History at University College London (UCL). Moderator: Roosmarijn Ubink, head of  RHCVV (Regionaal Historisch Centrum Vecht en Venen) at Breukelen, The Netherlands.

In this talk Andrew Flinn will connect a number of themes and approaches to questions of representation in the archives and in the historical narratives that derive in part from those archives.

In considering the contestation and counter-archival initiatives of the past I will draw on oral history practices, Sven Lindqvist’s ‘Dig Where You Stand’, Stuart Hall’s ‘Constituting the Archive’ and independent community-based archives and examine what implications these and contemporary practices such as rogue archives and conflict documentation have for Future Archives in the digital world. Following Michelle Caswell’s entreaty to make change in the present (not only or in addition to changing the future), I will swerve around the role of national archives and other state funded bodies, concentrating rather on the individuals and communities that take ownership of their own archival narratives and ensure the place of their own voices in the archives.



Andrew Flinn is a Reader in Archival Studies and Oral History in the Department of Information Studies and Vice Dean for Postgraduate Research in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University College London. Between 2005 and 2015 he was director of the Archives and Records Management programme at UCL. Prior to UCL he studied at the University of Manchester (PhD, 1999) and worked at the People’s History Museum in Manchester and the British Museum. Andrew is a Trustee of National Life Stories at the British Library and also the vice chair of the UK Community Archives and Heritage Group (CAHG) having been a member of the group’s executive committee since 2005. He is also co-leader of the Archives cluster in the joint University of Gothenburg / UCL Centre for Critical Heritage Studies. His research interests include independent and community-based archival practices, archival activism and social justice and participatory approaches to knowledge production aiming at social change and transformation. Relevant recent publications include (with Duff, Short and Wallace) Archives, Record-keeping and Social Justice (Routledge, 2020), and (with Bastian) Community Archives, Community Spaces: heritage, memory and identity (Facet, 2020). He is presently working with Astrid von Rosen (Gothenburg) to edit and produce the first English translation of Sven Lindqvist’s classic 1978 book Dig Where You Stand (Gräv där du står: Hur man utforskar ett job).

You can find the registration form here.