"Our shelf is a table with shared stuff": From VHS to Analog Archives
Friday, August 16, 2019

"Our shelf is a table with shared stuff": From VHS to Analog Archives

VHS Archives working group founder Alexandra Juhasz looks back on the second year of activities of the VHS Archives working group and discusses their steps toward creating a communal means for preserving and activating analog archives on digital platforms and the ethical use of the traces we leave behind. 

Hard Copies: Homecoming Queens
Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Hard Copies: Homecoming Queens

In this post, VHS Archives working group member and artist Tara Mateik shares his thoughts about the importance of tangible media as a form of leaving evidence of queer lives and revisits the collaborative video Homecoming Queens with some of his collaborators and the working group. 

“What are we asking from Lucretia? What work do we need this tape to do?”
Friday, June 21, 2019

“What are we asking from Lucretia? What work do we need this tape to do?”

VHS Archives working group member Kyle Croft unpacks questions about historicizing and activating analog archives. Centered around work from the Visual AIDS' Artist+ Registry and the artist Lucretia Critchlow, Croft opens up a discussion around avoiding over-determinations of an artist's career and their relationship to other artists, reckoning with privacy concerns in terms of how media distribution has dramatically changed over time, and complicating the notion of primary sources. 

Teaching Food: A Pedagogy for Climate Action
Thursday, March 7, 2019

Teaching Food: A Pedagogy for Climate Action

In this post, scholar Kaitlin Mondello shares thoughts and examples from her own teaching about how food pedagogies can be used to involve students in examining the entanglements between environmental and social justice. 

The Tell-Tale Eighteen: An Investigation
Thursday, February 21, 2019

The Tell-Tale Eighteen: An Investigation

Researcher Christopher Clarke gives a precise account of his scholarly detective work into multiple archives of Muriel Rukeyser's writing, as he looks for the key to missing pages of her translations of Arthur Rimbaud, shedding new light on the history of American translations of his work. 

Party Games with VHS Archives
Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Party Games with VHS Archives

Prof. Alexandra Juhasz reflects on the ongoing activities of the VHS Archives working group and how best to "care.share for digital and other fragile objects of and for the community who made or needs them." As the group creates a website and digital tool for working with this material among a group, they suggest that this work should be a party. In this post, Juhasz offers some ideas for "party games" for engaging community archives. 

Metaphors of Dis-Ease, Collaborating with Artist Mariam Ghani
Friday, December 14, 2018

Metaphors of Dis-Ease, Collaborating with Artist Mariam Ghani

In this post, GC PhD student Harry Blain discusses his experience working with a team of eight researchers to help collect material for Dis-Ease, an essay film by Mariam Ghani, focused on how metaphors of illness have changed over time and how the discourses around disease shape their treatment. This project appeared in the exhibition, Germ City: Microbes and the Metropolis at the Museum of the City of New York as part of the Wellcome Trust's Contagious Cities project. 

State violence and labor resistance: the 2008 Gafsa mining basin uprising and its afterlives
Monday, November 26, 2018

State violence and labor resistance: the 2008 Gafsa mining basin uprising and its afterlives

Corinna Mullin discusses her Adjunct Incubator research project Securitizing Resistance in Gafsa: Stratified Vulnerability and Surplus Labor Accumulation. In this post, she details her research, searching for archival traces of the ways in which Tunisia's 2008 Gafsa mining basin uprising was depicted in the media, how it prefigured the more well-known 2010-2011 Tunisian revolt, and what this event reveals about the role of violence in law-making and the security state's repression of popular resistance. 

A Dialogue on Teaching (Failure) (Love) (Performance): ‘What We Are Part Of…’
Friday, October 26, 2018

A Dialogue on Teaching (Failure) (Love) (Performance): ‘What We Are Part Of…’

GC PhD students and CUNY writing instructors Daisy Atterbury and Maxine Krenzel discuss their collaborative teaching initiative, inspired by poet Adrienne Rich's teaching materials “What We Are Part Of: Teaching at CUNY, 1968-1974.” They asked students to design their "dream courses" for students in one another's classes at Brooklyn College and Queens College. In this dialogue, they talk about the subtleties and the stakes of collaboration, what did or did not work in the process of student-to-student exchange, and what it means for teaching materials to have an archival life separate from that of student work.

ASL and Deaf Privilege
Wednesday, October 10, 2018

ASL and Deaf Privilege

Author Sara Nović shares thoughts on the day-long workshop and evening of performances and discussion, Publishing American Sign Language Poetry. In this short piece, she discusses various ideas raised about how ASL poetry might be published, critical questions that emerged from the day's conversation about ASL's relationship to written and spoken languages, and the particular expressivity of ASL. 

Debt is Exhausting
Friday, September 14, 2018

Debt is Exhausting

In this post, writer Jamara Wakefield asks: How do we get people to talk about the oppressive nature of debt when there is so much stigma and shame attached to owing? Providing a survey of the workings of debt and its consequences, Wakefield advocates and models a form of resistance that is rooted in intersectional organizing and open dialogue. This piece was co-commissioned and co-published by the performance venue JACK, located in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, as an extension of their series Reparations365, in collaboration with Digital Humanities Fellow Jaime Shearn Coan.

Good Morning Whiteness
Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Good Morning Whiteness

In this lyrical essay, Aisha "Li" Cousins reworks the song that Billie Holiday made famous, "Good Morning Heartache," into a mantra for the day-to-day experience of encountering whiteness in the realm of non-profit arts organizations. This piece was commissioned and co-published by the performance venue JACK, located in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, as an extension of their series Reparations365, in collaboration with Digital Humanities Fellow Jaime Shearn Coan.

Affirmation and Community Engagement: Working with The Laundromat Project
Friday, August 17, 2018

Affirmation and Community Engagement: Working with The Laundromat Project

Independent study student and recent CUNY BA program graduate Lauren Capellan details her experience working with the Laundromat Project's Kelly Street Initiative, while reflecting on the vital work supported by NEA funding; the work of artist Walter Cruz, who was Kelly Street's first artist-in-residence; and the food justice work of the Kelly Street Garden. 

​The Work(s) of the VHS Archives Working Group​
Thursday, August 16, 2018

​The Work(s) of the VHS Archives Working Group​

Scholar and VHS Archives working group founder Alexandra Juhasz recaps the manifold activities of the VHS Archives working group over the last year including the development of a digital platform prototype for ethical research of small collections of video, the concerns and ideas raised in meetings and writing by the working group members around everything from when to keep a public video private to how to work with archives that don't exist, except in memory. She also provides a preview of the group's activities for the 2018-2019 school year. 

"Not Corrective. Not Correct." Talking at the Boundaries
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

"Not Corrective. Not Correct." Talking at the Boundaries

In this post, Teaching Fellow Daisy Atterbury unpacks how notions of "right thinking" and practices of correction are deployed in teaching writing and literature. By thinking through the work of David Antin, Reggie Watts, Renee Gladman, Donte Collins, Nicole B. Wallack, Amy Wan, Toni Jensen, and Camonghne Felix, she proposes poetry as a means of teaching writing otherwise, while considering how the concept of literacy creates and denies access, produces and withholds citizenship, and authorizes or negates. And how teaching writing means rethinking (and feeling for) "presence."

Crucial Circulations: VHS and Queer AIDS Archives
Friday, August 10, 2018

Crucial Circulations: VHS and Queer AIDS Archives

Digital Publics Fellow Jaime Shearn Coan shares thoughts from two meetings of the VHS Archives working group, framing questions of access to archival material, its often simultaneously private and public meanings, and how it is situated within the lives and communities it springs from. He also discusses the lack of available material he encountered in his research project on Assotto Saint, the need for equity in terms of whose lives and stories are preserved through archives, the notion of "degralescence" and the dilemma posed by the wealth of material captured on VHS in need of preservation, as well as how archives can be reanimated in contemporary contexts.