Fieldworks is a project initiated by the Centre for Curating the Archive with a view to stimulating awareness of the necessity and dynamism of the archive. The term “fieldwork” is most often associated with the activities of ethnographers, geographers and anthropologists in collecting raw data from research sites. This data, or archive, is then used to produce knowledge about the subject of the fieldworker’s research. The separation of these two activities – the collection of data and the production of knowledge – is problematic in that it suggests that the archive is a finite structure. The aim of this project is to expand the notion of “fieldwork” to include both the collection of data and the production of knowledge, in addition to the methods by which and to whom this knowledge is being disseminated in the world. The result, it is hoped, will be a much more complex understanding of the archive as a structure which comprises all these very real processes, making them visible, tangible and useful, not only in research fields but also in public life. Fieldworks comprises a number of sub-projects led by various researchers, each of whom focuses on, and therefore highlights, a different aspect of the archival process.
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