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Call for Papers & Registration: A Lives & Letters/Narrative & A/B Studies Event

Call for Papers & Registration: A Lives & Letters/Narrative & A/B Studies Event
Hosted by: Liz Stanley # University of Edinburgh
Hosted by
Introduced by
Date and Time
4th Oct 2016 16:00 - 7th Nov 2016 17:00
University of Edinburgh

Tracing the trace: What is an archive? What is a collection? What is a document? A Lives & Letters/Narrative & A/B Studies Event

A Call for Papers! And Registration!

Further conference & registration details can be downloaded by clicking here

A one-day conference will be held at the University of Edinburgh on Friday 13 January 2017, to explore the impact of new technological, conceptual and methodological ideas on how archives and their contents are now being used to 'research the past', and what claims can be made for the result. This call for is for papers regarding all forms of archival research, with 'the archive' cast wide to spread from National Archives, to local archives, to buttonboxes and photograph albums, to radical-archives-in-the-making, to digital collections and more, and how 'the trace' now shapes up in relation to them.

The conference is one of three organised around the clarion-call made in The Archive Project (Moore, Salter, Stanley & Tamboukou, Routledge, August 2016), that the archival turn needs to be rethought in ways that avoid re-mythologising and which instead put 'the trace' (conference 1, Edinburgh), the power of the metaphorical (conference 2, London) and the multiplicities of writing (conference 3, Cambridge) at the core.

Edinburgh theme: The idea of 'the trace' comes from the work of Collingwood, Bloc and Derrida and indicates the flotsam and jetsam of the things of the past that remain and which necessarily inform or shape present-time investigations of times gone by. Traces can be written, visual, oral, material, musical, digital… Currently 'the trace' is being multiply impacted at ontological, epistemological, methodological and material levels by a succession of developments - including new theory, expanded ideas about archives, innovative methodologies, and new technological developments around digital images and electronic forms of assemblage and representation. There are powerful reverberations resulting. For some, what is ‘an archive’, what is ‘a collection’ and what is ‘a document’ are now all up for grabs. For others, the trace remains at a kaleidoscopic core and has to be reckoned with. So let's stand back and talk about it!

Offers of papers: Papers on any aspect of 'the trace' and how to think about and use it in archival inquiries are welcomed. The aim is to represent a wide range of ideas, arguments, archives and traces, and to aid this the slots for papers will be 20 minutes + 10 discussion in length. Please send a title and an abstract of not more than 400 words with your offer of a paper as an email attachment to Liz Stanley, Sociology, University of Edinburgh, email

Closing date for offers: The closing date for offers of papers is Monday 7 November 2016.

Registration for attendance: Registration for the Edinburgh event is open NOW! There is no charge. However, room capacity is limited and therefore early registration is encouraged. There is a registration form at the end of this flyer – please complete and send the form to the email address above. Exactly when registration closes will depend on numbers, but the final date will be 18 December. Numbers will be limited to 40, so please register asap to avoid disappointment. Thank you.

  • The date: Friday 13 January, 10am to 4.30pm (coffee from 9:30 am)
  • The place: University of Edinburgh
  • Offers of paper: by 7 November
  • The detail: Building & room details with abstracts & a conference programme will be sent by email and file attachment in later December to people who are registered for the event. The venue will be fully disabled accessible.