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Back-ups for the Future: Archival Practices for Data Activism

Back-ups for the Future: Archival Practices for Data Activism

Morgan Currie

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This theoretical article seeks to close the gap between literature on archival activism and literature on data activism, in hopes that both sets of research can draw productively from each other. There are clear affinities between activist archives and data activism: both address the failure by mainstream institutions to account for marginal voices, both have the power to make issues visible and legitimate within the public sphere, and both experiment with traditional forms of memory and statistical evidence. The authors believe that these two powerful forms of activity have much to learn from each other, particularly as the need to steward data over the long term will only grow.