The forensic imagination: interdisciplinary approaches to tracing creativity in writers' born-digital archives

Gooding, P. , Smith, J. and Mann, J. (2019) The forensic imagination: interdisciplinary approaches to tracing creativity in writers' born-digital archives. Archives and Manuscripts, 47(3), pp. 374-390. (doi: 10.1080/01576895.2019.1608837)

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In 2013, Matthew Kirschenbaum advocated for increased collaboration between digital archivists and digital humanities specialists to make the most out of born-digital archives. Since then, researchers and archivists have experimented with innovative interfaces for access to writer’s archives that emerge from individual research cultures and practices. Simultaneously, archives such as the British Archive for Contemporary Writing (BACW) at the University of East Anglia (UEA) are beginning to collect the work of authors who work in inventive digital ways. This article will therefore explore the following question: how might archivists, authors and researchers profitably collaborate to explore the nature of creativity in the born-digital archive, so that both digital preservation and digital scholarship take place? In doing so, the authors look to the complementary fields of genetic criticism and digital humanities to inform the development of archival tools as ‘hermeneutical instruments’. They will explore how such instruments might allow us to read horizontally across archival strata, building on an ‘esthetic of the possible’ to develop a ‘jouer avec les fonds’, supported through collaboration between researchers, archivists and writers. Finally, the authors consider how this approach challenges archival practices, and propose forms of collaboration that might address both archival practice and emerging forms of scholarship.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:Born-digital, archives, digital humanities.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gooding, Professor Paul
Authors: Gooding, P., Smith, J., and Mann, J.
Subjects:P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z004 Books. Writing. Paleography
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Humanities > Information Studies
Journal Name:Archives and Manuscripts
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):2164-6058
Published Online:11 August 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Paul Gooding, Jos Smith and Justine Mann
First Published:First published in Archives and Manuscripts 47(3): 374-390
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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