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The Humanities Program

HMN 350 • Archiv Advacy:exper Learn

30385 • Lang, Elon
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 201 • Hybrid/Blended
(also listed as LAH 350)
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In this seminar, students will use digital archiving and exhibit-building techniques to amplify voices that actively promote social justice, cultural awareness, and service, and to test the ethical positions about impartiality and advocacy in archival and exhibit practices. Through a client-based service-project, students will work with an institutional or organizational stakeholder in the community that has materials or records that could provide a good subject for archival inquiry, preservation, and advocacy. Students will work closely with each other, their instructor, and the community stakeholders to access materials and records from the institution’s history, to learn the stakeholders’ goals and priorities for their project, to digitize and describe collections of their items, and to produce a public digital exhibit on selections from this collection in the platform Omeka. Their goal is to use an exhibit to situate the collection in the context of both the organization’s own history and a broader history of the community in which the organization is situated, and then to promote the Omeka site on behalf of the organization.

A key learning objective for the course is for students to explore the boundary between impartiality and advocacy in the telling of historical narratives about a subject in which a client organization has a vested interest, while also navigating the organization’s concerns about privacy and publicity. This experiential learning class will cultivate professional skills in client relations, information science, cultural outreach, media literacy, and web design—as well as teamwork, independent research, critical thinking, work ethic discipline, accountability, and creativity.

Required Texts and other Materials

Readings will be distributed via Canvas. Students will need a functioning computer with the ability to access the internet and do Zoom video conferences.