Archives, Memory & Identity: A Public Symposium

Date: 7 September 2018
Time: 8:30 a.m.–6:00 p.m.
Location: Auditorium of the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, UVA
Presented by: Rare Book School, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and UVA Library

María Verónica San Martín, In Their Memory (2012).  Photo by Denny Henry.

María Verónica San Martín, In Their Memory (2012).
Photo by Denny Henry.

During a time when “alternative facts” are regularly discussed and disputed in the mainstream media, archive-based evidence has become increasingly valued for its ability to document the histories and perspectives of diverse peoples, cultures, and movements. We invite you to join Rare Book School and UVA Libraries for “Archives, Memory & Identity,” a public, one-day symposium that will bring together archivists, librarians, curators, digital humanists, academics, artists, and activists working on a range of cross-disciplinary, culturally sensitive projects that challenge traditional models for creating and stewarding visual and textual artifacts.

Featuring panel discussions on access, storytelling, and community outreach, the symposium will include innovators working on a variety of projects—from established archives, including The HistoryMakers (recording African American oral histories since 1999), the South Asian American Digital Archive, and the Plateau Peoples’ Web Portal—to new initiatives, such as the Digital Library of the Middle East and UVA’s Lhasa VR. The symposium will delve into artists’ books and film as forms of documenting social movements and social change with activist-artist María Verónica San Martín and filmmaker Brian Wimer (director of Charlottesville: Our Streets). Drawing on the work of archivists Aaisha Haykal and Johan Kugelberg, the symposium will also explore the significance of forging relationships with community members, to build living and lasting collections that represent significant countercultures.

The symposium is free and open to the general public, but space is limited. We ask those who plan to attend the symposium to register online by 3 September.

This event is jointly sponsored by Rare Book School, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and UVA Library. The symposium will be held in the Auditorium of the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library at the University of Virginia.

Schedule (additional details to come)

Registration — 8:30–9:00 a.m.

Coffee, tea, and light refreshments will be served

Opening remarks — 9:00–9:15 a.m.

Session 1: Access — 9:15–10:45 a.m.


  • Trevor James Bond (Washington State University Libraries)
  • Will Rourk (Information Visualization Specialist, Scholars’ Lab, University of Virginia) & Kurtis R. Schaeffer (Frances Myers Ball Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies, University of Virginia)
  • Peter Herdrich (Co-Founder, The Antiquities Coalition and CEO, Cultural Capital Group, LLC) & Bethany Nowviskie (Executive Director, Digital Library Federation)

Break — 10:45–11:15 a.m.

Coffee, tea, and light refreshments will be served

Session 2: Storytelling & Memory — 11:15 a.m.–12:45 p.m.


  • Samip Mallick (Executive Director, South Asian American Digital Archive)
  • Julieanna Richardson (Founder & Executive Director, The HistoryMakers)
  • María Verónica San Martín (Independent Book Artist)

Lunch on your own — 12:45–1:45 p.m.

Group restaurant signup sheets will be available throughout the morning

Session 3: Community Archives & Outreach — 1:45–3:15 p.m.


  • Aaisha Haykal (Manager of Archival Services, Avery Research Center, College of Charleston)
  • Johann Kugelberg (Owner and Curator, of Boo-Hooray gallery)
  • Brian Wimer (Filmmaker)

Beverage break — 3:15–3:45 p.m.

Session 4: Roundtable Discussion: Cultural Heritage, Social Justice, and Individual Responsibility — 3:45–5:15 p.m.

Reception — 5:15–6:00 p.m.

Symposium Registration

Please note that although attendance is free, space is limited. We encourage prospective participants to register to reserve a space in the symposium.
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