Archives in a Wider World: The Culture and Politics of Archives

  • Sarah Tyacke


This is a reflective essay on some of the cultural, literary criticism, historical, and postmodern implications for records management and archiving, archives, and archivists from a point of view situated in the Unite d Kingdom. It is based on observing the changes, over the past ten years, in th e position of archives in various countries' perceptions. The author maintain s that archivists have the critical role of producing an archiving resolution of the tensions in soci ety at any one time between what should be kept and destroyed, and what should be open and closed-- bot h for the present and, more importantly, for future generations. Archivists need to make the manner of the archival resolution clear and understand the inherent bi ases in the processes necessary to achieve that resolution.

Author Biography

Sarah Tyacke
Sarah Tyacke has been Keeper of Public Records and Chief Executive of the Public Record Office (PRO) of the United Kingdom government since 1992. She was responsible for building the new PRO building at Kew and establishing the separate Family Records Centre for family historians. Her responsibilities now include the records management part of the "modernizing government" agenda (freedom of information and digital records), and the promotion of the use of England’s archives and their "metadata" via the Access to Archives (A2A) programme and via the digital release of the 1901 census and other historical records over the Internet under the Nation’s Memory programme.
How to Cite
Tyacke, Sarah. 2001. “Archives in a Wider World: The Culture and Politics of Archives”. Archivaria 52 (November), 1-25.