Community vs. Institution: Modeling Archival Discourse

Music and cultural archives, charged with preserving, curating and stewarding the use of cultural heritage, exist primarily in large traditional institutional settings such as governmental agencies, universities, and museums. However, with the advent of digital repositories and accompanying notions of archival democratization, these responsibilities are now capable of being returned to content originators and localized communities. Working towards a greater, long-term understanding of collaborative archival formation, this project distinguishes between types of music and cultural archives, focusing primarily on the difference between larger institutions and community-based archives in the United Kingdom and United States. To understand these distinctions, I use data mining methodology to trace public-facing discourses present in mission statements and other descriptive sources such as websites and marketing materials. Tracing these discourses includes the analysis of language being used by archives, but may also extend to geographical mapping of the difference in discourses in order to situate these ideas spatially.