Origin stories and the shaping of the community-based archives

Jamie A. Lee, Bianca Finley Alper, Aems Emswiler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This paper centers a three-year research project into community-based archives and the power of their naming practices. Expanding the idea of naming practices to further consider how the archives itself is defined and understood by the creators, donors, and communities that are represented therein, the co-authors consider the emergent focus on origin stories told about the founding of community-based archives. The lead author attends to the community/institution dichotomy to consider how such relationality insists on a both/and understanding wherein the language of the origin story is centered in relations and informs how archives continue to become. Through auto-ethnographic and intimate theorizing and analysis, the lead author offers a self-critique on naming practices and self-identification to account for the shape of the archives over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-410
Number of pages30
JournalArchival Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2023


  • Community-Based Archives
  • Creators
  • Founders; Initiators
  • Origin Stories
  • Radical Openness
  • Storytelling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Library and Information Sciences

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