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Archival objects in motion: historians’ appropriation of sources in nineteenth-century Austria and Switzerland


Saxer, Daniela (2010). Archival objects in motion: historians’ appropriation of sources in nineteenth-century Austria and Switzerland. Archival Science, 10(3):315-331.

Abstract

This contribution examines the social, material, and epistemic practices of historians and their counterparts engaged in the textual and visual reproduction of historical sources in nineteenth-century Austria and Switzerland. The Schweizerische Urkundenregister (1863-1877), a Swiss register of medieval charters, and the Monumenta graphica medii aevi (1859-1883), an Austrian collection of photographic facsimiles of medieval sources, were both intended to make historical sources accessible outside the archives in the framework of national history. The article analyzes institutional collaborations and the social interactions among the actors involved and follows the trajectories of the mobilized archival objects. These projects for national source publications appear as a negotiated social practice, in which archival objects were dislocated conceptually as well as materially in order to be stabilized and reified again in new infrastructures of research. The conflicts surrounding the projects reveal disputes about authority over the archival records, their significance, and the techniques required to represent them properly, and show how the emergence of scholarly source publications accompanied a conscious erasure of older contexts of meaning

Abstract

This contribution examines the social, material, and epistemic practices of historians and their counterparts engaged in the textual and visual reproduction of historical sources in nineteenth-century Austria and Switzerland. The Schweizerische Urkundenregister (1863-1877), a Swiss register of medieval charters, and the Monumenta graphica medii aevi (1859-1883), an Austrian collection of photographic facsimiles of medieval sources, were both intended to make historical sources accessible outside the archives in the framework of national history. The article analyzes institutional collaborations and the social interactions among the actors involved and follows the trajectories of the mobilized archival objects. These projects for national source publications appear as a negotiated social practice, in which archival objects were dislocated conceptually as well as materially in order to be stabilized and reified again in new infrastructures of research. The conflicts surrounding the projects reveal disputes about authority over the archival records, their significance, and the techniques required to represent them properly, and show how the emergence of scholarly source publications accompanied a conscious erasure of older contexts of meaning

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:National licences > 142-005
Dewey Decimal Classification:Unspecified
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > History
Social Sciences & Humanities > Library and Information Sciences
Language:English
Date:1 September 2010
Deposited On:28 Nov 2018 17:39
Last Modified:15 Apr 2021 14:52
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1042-1467
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10502-010-9126-x

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