Women’s archives hold a significant place in the historical record, illuminating stories of individuals who had an impact on our past in both powerful and quiet ways. The history of the archives themselvesand the struggle to achieve equal representation within the historical recordalso tell a valuable story, one that deftly examines American culture and society over the past few centuries.
In Perspectives on Women’s Archives, eighteen essays written by noted archivists and historians illustrate the origins of a women-centered history, the urgent need to locate records that highlight the diverse experiences of women, and the effort to document womens experiences. The essays also expose the need for renewed collaboration between archivists and historians, the challenges related to the accessibility of womens collections, and the development of community archives.
Ultimately, archival relevancy is reinforced, not diminished, by sharing resources and exposing absences. This book inspires new thinking about the value of womens archives and how to fill the gaps in our recordkeeping to move toward a more diverse and inclusive future.
What Others Are Saying:
“It is evident that the editors took much care and time in selecting the essays that represent different perspectives on women’s archives. All the essays are strongly written with no weak or confusing parts or interludes. . . . [Perspectives on Women’s Archives] made me proud to be an archivist and want to continue improving in this field and contributing more to the world as part of this profession.”
—Julia Stringfellow, Boise State University, Journal of Western Archives, Volume 5, Issue 1
“Perspectives on Women’s Archives satisfies on two counts. This collection of essays provides a useful summary of the development of the field of women’s history since the emergence of the discipline in the 1970s and of the growth of women’s archives from the earliest days of the republic. . . . [It] also offers stimulating prescriptions for the future direction of archives and raises urgent questions about the quality and equality of access in our overwhelmingly digital environment.”
—Christine Froechtenigt Harper, City of St. Louis, Archival Issues, Volume 36, Number 1
“This work is an excellent investment in the archival pursuit of women’s records. It also serves as a history of the women’s movement in the 1960s–70s, capturing the inventiveness that motivated it.”
—A. Salter, Ogelthorpe University, Choice, Volume 51, Number 7