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In the last 25 years, we have displaced much of our culture, work, and recordkeeping into the digital domain. While this turn has vastly enriched many lives, it has also amplified divides, accelerated inequalities, elevated the possibility of historical amnesia, and brought us new and onerous forms of labor. But it is not irreversible. Digital emergence is feeding a renaissance of physical media, a revival of the handmade, and an analog culture that consciously looks forward rather than to the past. The opposition of digital progress and analog nostalgia is giving way to a new vision of hybridity, according to Rick Prelinger, founder of Prelinger Archives, a collection of 60,000 ephemeral films acquired by the Library of Congress in 2002. Centered on the archival record and the production of culture as models for social imagination, Prelinger will explore how strategies that look beyond physical/virtual binaries can aspire to redistribute power and heal digital wounds.
Co-sponsored by the Higgins School of Humanities, Goddard Library, and Screen Studies at Clark University