Marlene Manoff deposited Archival Silence in the Age of Trump in the group TC Memory Studies on MLA Commons 5 years, 11 months ago
The Trump presidency has fueled growing apprehension about a media landscape rife with lies, bogus news, and conspiracy theories. These concerns can be situated within a discourse of archival silence which questions the ways in which knowledge may be concealed, misappropriated and exploited in the service of governments, corporations and individuals. This work has prompted a variety of strategies to counter, resist and make visible various forms of exclusion and omission. Efforts to preserve at-risk data have been accompanied by efforts to protect the information of at-risk populations. This paper seeks to illuminate both the silences of information loss and the threat posed by unprotected user information. It describes efforts within the library, archival, IT, and scientific communities to preserve and protect records while monitoring official information that is subject to alteration. This resistance to archival erasure represents an acknowledgement of the centrality of archival production in establishing truth, providing a foundation for new knowledge and preserving the historical record. And it reminds us that many are engaged in a contemporary battle to prevent a reign of archival silence.