Getting Started

April 2, 2009

I have come to realize that many of my ideas, including those related to my profession as a historian and an archivist, go against the general thought flow of others in my professional world.  I realized the degree to which this was true when the president of an archival professional society listened to me expound upon several of my ideas, then looked me in the eye and said “Heresy!” I thought, “Well, yeah. Okay. I’ll go with that.”

I am not alone in my views and every now and then I discover a kindred spirit in the profession or read an article or Web post that suggests there are still others who might share some of my views. This blog is for the expression of some of these heresies, as well as some more or less mainstream views. I will eventually provide links to and for others who share my views or wish to join the discussions. It might be fun.

I will state up front that many of my heretical views are not related specifically to my profession, though they sometimes overlap. I work in a public institution, but also serve as a religious historian and archivist. Comments made by coworkers tend to stir thoughts of a religious, philosophical or even political nature that may find their ways to these pages.  That is as it is.

My first act of heresy is to be a user advocate. I feel that the primary purpose of saving anything, including records and historical memorabilia, is so that it may be used. I  have discovered that there are those who feel records should be preserved for the sake of preserving them, (art for art’s sake?) or because they give their custodian’s power. I have discovered that in religious institutions they are often hidden, destroyed or not kept at all to help entities retain power. My advocacy for open records and ready access has been met in many cases with attitudes ranging from antipathy to aggressive opposition. Again, that is as it is.

I will expound further, but the primary purpose of this post is just to get the thing going. We will see where it eventually ends up.

The Heretic

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: