Start Date

20-5-2011

Description

Religion is a defining factor in the identity formation process of a minority community. Historically, religion has often been used as a driving force behind the introduction, development and completion of projects that require collective effort. In fact, in many cases, religion has been an extreme denominator that has created new communities of practice, or solidified existing ones. A unifying force, religion and its expressions in liturgical or everyday forms is an overarching element that unites members of these communities beyond the geographic or temporal limitations. Today, new technologies are paramount in online and digital archives of minority communities, especially in ways that these communities use these technologies to retell and “exhibit” their identity online. Crowdsourcing archives with user-generated material can add valuable context to archival holdings, shed light on hidden collections, and tie them with material in other institutions or countries. In the context of this paper, the notion of crowdsourcing in archives will be examined through the lens of religion and a classification of such initiatives will be proposed.

Keywords: Minorities, crowdsourcing, archives, memory, identity

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May 20th, 12:00 AM

Memorializing Religion: Crowdsourcing, Minorities, and the Quest for Identity in Online Archives

Religion is a defining factor in the identity formation process of a minority community. Historically, religion has often been used as a driving force behind the introduction, development and completion of projects that require collective effort. In fact, in many cases, religion has been an extreme denominator that has created new communities of practice, or solidified existing ones. A unifying force, religion and its expressions in liturgical or everyday forms is an overarching element that unites members of these communities beyond the geographic or temporal limitations. Today, new technologies are paramount in online and digital archives of minority communities, especially in ways that these communities use these technologies to retell and “exhibit” their identity online. Crowdsourcing archives with user-generated material can add valuable context to archival holdings, shed light on hidden collections, and tie them with material in other institutions or countries. In the context of this paper, the notion of crowdsourcing in archives will be examined through the lens of religion and a classification of such initiatives will be proposed.

Keywords: Minorities, crowdsourcing, archives, memory, identity