This City Is An Archive: Squatting History and Urban Authority

Burgum, Samuel (2020) This City Is An Archive: Squatting History and Urban Authority. Journal of Urban History, 48 (3). pp. 504-522. ISSN 0096-1442

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Since the archival turn, archives have been widely portrayed as “dominating” institutions, which has led to even community archives being defined as “anti-authority.” It is the contention of this paper that this approach misses (1) the way in which DIY archives provide territorial authority for marginalized communities, and (2) the radical potential of such counter-narratives in seeing the city itself as an archive. Outlining both the role of archival authority in community archives and the use of an archival imagination in approaching the city, the paper considers possibilities for urban movements and campaigns, bringing together examples from the Resistance Project, 56a Infoshop, Advisory Service for Squatters, Occupy London, and the Remembering Olive Collective. An approach is forwarded which, in light of the participatory turn in archival studies, reframes the city as an archive, to encourage attentiveness to authority and to produce a capacity to aspire.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number:
11 September 2020Accepted
11 September 2020Published Online
Subjects: CAH15 - social sciences > CAH15-01 - sociology, social policy and anthropology > CAH15-01-02 - sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences > Criminology and Sociology
Depositing User: Gemma Tonks
Date Deposited: 01 Aug 2023 14:18
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2023 14:18

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