Archives work is emotional work

Reposted from Archive Steph, a reminder of the work of archivists:

“More technically, archives work is emotional work. This can be through the cataloguing of the outputs of people’s intimate inner lives (personal papers, email, correspondence, family photos). Sometimes we are taking meticulous care over documenting the life of someone who we don’t like very much. Perhaps sometimes, we fall a little in love with them. Perhaps it will put you off enjoying a person’s life’s work once you learn what they were ‘really like’ and that lifelong joy has been soured. Maybe it’s a collection documenting something really traumatic or sickening. Or a volunteer or staff member going through a tough time. Even ourselves, suddenly in the spotlight, that gnawing anxiety that can’t be shifted that we’ve failed, publicly. Worst professsional nightmare, am I right?”

Read the full post here.