Archives, as one of the central institutions in the modern social order, have gone through a period of significant transformations in terms of their nature, functions and social uses. Under the combined effects of the changes in sociopolitical and economic structures over the past few decades and the innovations taking place in information technology, archives have experienced considerable transformation in order to continue serving as a key resource to people living in late capitalist societies.
The introduction of the new technologies in archive management, the exponential growth of the storage capacity provided by digital media and the democratization of the capacity to save and maintain individual and collective memories in these formats are among the most relevant aspects of the social importance of archives in contemporary culture. The impact of the new processes of data accumulation, visualization and management is nonetheless often contemplated only in its technological dimension.
This book, edited by Fernando Estévez González and Mariano de Santa Ana, seeks to broaden the debate regarding archives, taking it beyond its usual reduction to such technical and operational aspects. Archives, the book concludes, are both a mechanism for social control and a place in which to affirm other memories resistent to forgetting. Derived from two seminars, this publication offers a space for critical reflection, starting with different epistemological presuppositions and thoeretical orientations, from art history and the social sciences to audiovisual montage and artistic praxis.
Jorge Blasco Gallardo, independent curator, director of the research project Archive Cultures and co-author of the book.
Fernando Estévez González, anthropologist and co-editor of the book.
Mariano de Santa Ana, art historian and co-editor of the book.
Isidoro Valcárcel Medina, artist and co-author of the book.