Making Digital Heritage about People's Life Stories

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Actively creating new digital heritage content about people’s life historiesis part of the democratisation of heritage engagement with the public. Theapproach of documenting unofficial histories is supported by a growingliterature. Unofficial stories contribute new perspectives on the heritageidentity of a region. The case study of the ‘Local People’ exhibition, curatedby the author in 2013 in the North West of Ireland, is used to discuss themethodology of a digital curatorial process, www.localpeopleireland.com.This article argues that gathering and presenting unofficial histories ofindividuals’ life experiences, can disrupt official narratives of The Troublesand challenge a regional identity based on conflict and division. The makingof digital history is analysed as a curatorial process, rather than the easeof use of technology. The methods used included: filmed interviews, newportrait photography and the digitisation of family photograph albums.A virtual exhibition was produced and new digital historical sources werecreated that transform intangible heritage by crystallising people’s voicesand images into ‘tangible’ digital objects. ‘Local People’ utilised Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/localpeopleproject/?fref=ts and Vimeo https://vimeo.com/album/2518991. It is argued that the digital space provides a‘virtual contact zone’ in which diverse, unofficial and personal narrativescan be presented together.
LanguageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Heritage Studies
Volume2016
Early online date30 May 2016
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 May 2016

Fingerprint

digitization
contact zone
democratization
photography
history
photograph
life history
transform
regional identity
facebook
Ireland
contact
narrative
Digital Heritage
Life Story
Life story
Digital heritage
interview
experience
family

Keywords

  • Digital heritage
  • virtual exhibition
  • curation
  • local
  • people
  • history

Cite this

@article{009e353a933344f6ba8ceba6808fd0c5,
title = "Making Digital Heritage about People's Life Stories",
abstract = "Actively creating new digital heritage content about people’s life historiesis part of the democratisation of heritage engagement with the public. Theapproach of documenting unofficial histories is supported by a growingliterature. Unofficial stories contribute new perspectives on the heritageidentity of a region. The case study of the ‘Local People’ exhibition, curatedby the author in 2013 in the North West of Ireland, is used to discuss themethodology of a digital curatorial process, www.localpeopleireland.com.This article argues that gathering and presenting unofficial histories ofindividuals’ life experiences, can disrupt official narratives of The Troublesand challenge a regional identity based on conflict and division. The makingof digital history is analysed as a curatorial process, rather than the easeof use of technology. The methods used included: filmed interviews, newportrait photography and the digitisation of family photograph albums.A virtual exhibition was produced and new digital historical sources werecreated that transform intangible heritage by crystallising people’s voicesand images into ‘tangible’ digital objects. ‘Local People’ utilised Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/localpeopleproject/?fref=ts and Vimeo https://vimeo.com/album/2518991. It is argued that the digital space provides a‘virtual contact zone’ in which diverse, unofficial and personal narrativescan be presented together.",
keywords = "Digital heritage, virtual exhibition, curation, local, people, history",
author = "Harriet Purkis",
note = "Reference text: BBC History Website. 2016. Accessed March 30, 2016. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/troubles Bennett, T. 2006. “Exhibition, Difference and the Logic of Culture”. In Museum Frictions, edited by I. Karp, C. A. Kratz, L. Szwaja, and T. Ybarra-Frausto, 46–69. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Blackburn, K. 2013. “The ‘Democratization’ of Memories of Singapore’s Past.” Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences of Southeast Asia and Oceania/ Bijdragen Tot De Taal-, Land-EnVolkenkunde 169 (4): 431–456. doi:http:// dx.doi.org/10.1163/22134379-12340064. Bouchard, D. 2009. “Museums, Cultural Heritage and Dialogue in Northern Ireland: Strategies for Divided Societies.” In Heritage and beyond, edited by D. Therond and A. Trigona, 91–100. Strasbourg: Council of Europe. Burgess, J., and H. Klaebe. 2009. “Digital Storytelling as Participatory Public History in Australia.” In Story Circle, edited by J. Hartley and K. McWilliam, 155–166. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. Carnegie, E. 2006. “‘It Wasn’t All Bad’: Representations of Working Class Culture.” Museum and Society 4 (2): 69–83. Council of Europe. 2009. Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society Treaty of Lisbon. Accessed October 9, 2015. http://conventions.coe.int/Treaty/EN/Treaties/Html/199.htm Crooke, E. 2007. Museums and Communities. Oxon: Routledge. Davis, P., H. Han-yin, and L. Wan-chen. 2010. “Heritage, Local Communities and the Safeguarding of ‘Spirit of Place’ in Taiwan.” Museum and Society 8 (2): 80–89. De Jong, S. 2012. “Who is History? The Use of Autobiographical Accounts in History Museums.” In Museums and Biographies: Stories, Objects, Identities, edited by K. Hill, 295–308. Newcastle: The Boydell Press. Dellios, A. 2015. “Marginal or Mainstream? Migrant Centres as Grassroots and Official Heritage.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (10): 1068–1083. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2015.1066410. Fleming, D. 2010. “Social History in Museums: 35 Years of Progress?” Journal of the Social History Curators Group 34: 39–45. Galani, A., and A. Moschovi. 2013. “Other People’s Stories: Bringing Public-generated Photography into the Contemporary Art Museum.” Museum & Society 11 (2): 172–184. Geber, K. 2006. “Digital Heritage News Participatory Digital Cultural Content.” Museum International 58 (1–2): 121–122. Gentry, K. 2015. “‘The Pathos of Conservation’: Raphael Samuel and the Politics of Heritage.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (6): 561–576. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2014.953192. Graham, H., R. Mason, and N. Nayling. 2013. “The Personal is Still Political: Museums, Participation and Copyright.” Museum and Society 11 (2): 105–121. Hamilton, P., and L. Shopes, eds. 2008. Oral History and Public Memories. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press. Harrison, R. 2013. Heritage: Critical Approaches. London: Routledge. High, S., J. Mills, and S. Zembrzycki. 2012. “Telling Our Stories/Animating Our past: A Status Report on Oral History and Digital Media.” Canadian Journal of Communication 37: 383–403. Hogsden, C., and E. Poulter. 2012. “The Real Other? Museum Objects in Digital Contact Networks.” Journal of Material Culture 17 (3): 265–286. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1359183512453809. Kaplan, D., and E. Chacko. 2015. “Placing Immigrant Identities.” Journal of Cultural Geography 32 (1): 129–138. Kavanagh, G. 1996. Making Histories in Museums. London: Leicester University Press. Lloyd, K. 2014. “Narratives of Belonging and Exclusion: The Negotiation of Heritage and Place in Young People’s Conceptualisations of National Identity in Scotland.” PhD thesis, Newcastle University. Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations, EBSCOhost viewed 25 November 2015. Lombardo, V., and R. Damiano. 2012. “Storytelling on Mobile Devices for Cultural Heritage.” New Review of Hypermedia and Multimedia 18 (1–2): 11–35. Museums and the Web. 2015. “The Museum as Digital Storyteller: Collaborative Participatory Creation of Interactive Digital Experiences Conference.” Chicago, IL, April 8–11. http://mw2015.museumsandtheweb.com/paper/themuseum-as-digital-storyteller-collaborative-participatory-creation-of-interactive-digital-experiences/. Navarrete, T. 2013. “Digital Cultural Heritage.” In Handbook on the Economics of Cultural Heritage, edited by Rizzo, I. and A. Mignosa, 251–271. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. Phillips, R. 2003. “Community Collaboration in Exhibitions: Introduction.” In Museums and Source Communities, edited by L. Peers and A. K. Brown, 157–170. New York: Routledge. Pietrobruno, S. 2013. “YouTube and the Social Archiving of Intangible Heritage.” New Media & Society 15 (8): 1259–1276. Pocock, C., D. Collett, and L. Baulch. 2015. “Assessing Stories before Sites: Identifying the Tangible from the Intangible.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (10): 962–982. Pratt, M. L. 1991. “Arts of the Contact Zone.” Profession 91: 33–40. Purkis, H. 2014. “Collecting the Home in Different Ways: SAMDOK’s Ethnographic Method Compared to Other Approaches.” In Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums, edited by O. Rhys and Z. Baveystock, 170–209. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Radmilli, R. 2011. “Ilhna Beltin: Locating Identity in a Fortified Mediterranean City.” In Local Heritage, Global Context: Cultural Perspectives on Sense of Place, edited by J. Schofield and R. Szymanski, 173–186. Surrey: Ashgate. Rahaman, H. 2015. “Digital Heritage Interpretation.” Accessed November 25, 2015. https://hafiz2010.wordpress.com/ Rhys, O., and Z. Baveystock, eds. 2014. Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Richie, D. A., ed. 2011. The Oxford Handbook of Oral History. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Rogaly, B., and B. Taylor. 2009. Moving Histories of Class and Community: Identity, Place and Belonging in Contemporary England. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Samuel, R. 2012. Theatres of Memory: Past and Present in Contemporary Culture. London: Verso. Sharron, S. and J. Abraham. 2015. “The Role of Curiosity in Making up Digital Content Promoting Cultural Heritage.” Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences 184: 259–265. Smith, R., and O. Iversen. 2014. “Participatory Heritage Innovation: Designing Dialogic Sites of Engagement.” Digital Creativity 25 (3): 255–268. Srinivasan, R. 2013. “Bridges between Cultural and Digital Worlds in Revolutionary Egypt.” The Information Society 29 (1): 49–60. Srinivasan, R., K. Becvar, R. Boast, and J. Enote. 2010. “Diverse Knowledges and Contact Zones within the Digital Museum.” Science, Technology & Human Values 35 (5): 735–768. Thompson, P. 2000. The Voice of the Past: Oral History. London: Oxford University Press. UNESCO. 2015. Concept of Digital Heritage. Accessed October 9, 2015. http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communicationand-information/access-to-knowledge/preservation-of-documentary-heritage/digital-heritage/concept-of-digitalheritage/ van der Velden, M. 2010. “Design for the Contact Zone.” In Proceedings: Cultural Attitudes towards Communication and Technology, edited by F. Sudweeks, H. Hrachovec, and C. Ess, 1–18. Perth: Murdoch University. Veronesi, F. 2014. “Curating the Sensorial: Digital Mediation and Social Engagement with Place, Objects and Intangible Heritage.” In Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums, edited by O. Rhys and Z. Baveystock, 484–513. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Walker, B. M. 2012. A Political History of the Two Irelands. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Were, G. 2014. “Digital Heritage, Knowledge Networks, and Source Communities: Understanding Digital Objects in a Melanesian Society.” Museum Anthropology 37 (2): 133–143. Witcomb, A. 2003. Re-imagining the Museum. London: Routledge.",
year = "2016",
month = "5",
day = "30",
doi = "10.1080/13527258.2016.1190392",
language = "English",
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Making Digital Heritage about People's Life Stories. / Purkis, Harriet.

In: International Journal of Heritage Studies, Vol. 2016, 30.05.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Making Digital Heritage about People's Life Stories

AU - Purkis, Harriet

N1 - Reference text: BBC History Website. 2016. Accessed March 30, 2016. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/troubles Bennett, T. 2006. “Exhibition, Difference and the Logic of Culture”. In Museum Frictions, edited by I. Karp, C. A. Kratz, L. Szwaja, and T. Ybarra-Frausto, 46–69. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Blackburn, K. 2013. “The ‘Democratization’ of Memories of Singapore’s Past.” Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences of Southeast Asia and Oceania/ Bijdragen Tot De Taal-, Land-EnVolkenkunde 169 (4): 431–456. doi:http:// dx.doi.org/10.1163/22134379-12340064. Bouchard, D. 2009. “Museums, Cultural Heritage and Dialogue in Northern Ireland: Strategies for Divided Societies.” In Heritage and beyond, edited by D. Therond and A. Trigona, 91–100. Strasbourg: Council of Europe. Burgess, J., and H. Klaebe. 2009. “Digital Storytelling as Participatory Public History in Australia.” In Story Circle, edited by J. Hartley and K. McWilliam, 155–166. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. Carnegie, E. 2006. “‘It Wasn’t All Bad’: Representations of Working Class Culture.” Museum and Society 4 (2): 69–83. Council of Europe. 2009. Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society Treaty of Lisbon. Accessed October 9, 2015. http://conventions.coe.int/Treaty/EN/Treaties/Html/199.htm Crooke, E. 2007. Museums and Communities. Oxon: Routledge. Davis, P., H. Han-yin, and L. Wan-chen. 2010. “Heritage, Local Communities and the Safeguarding of ‘Spirit of Place’ in Taiwan.” Museum and Society 8 (2): 80–89. De Jong, S. 2012. “Who is History? The Use of Autobiographical Accounts in History Museums.” In Museums and Biographies: Stories, Objects, Identities, edited by K. Hill, 295–308. Newcastle: The Boydell Press. Dellios, A. 2015. “Marginal or Mainstream? Migrant Centres as Grassroots and Official Heritage.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (10): 1068–1083. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2015.1066410. Fleming, D. 2010. “Social History in Museums: 35 Years of Progress?” Journal of the Social History Curators Group 34: 39–45. Galani, A., and A. Moschovi. 2013. “Other People’s Stories: Bringing Public-generated Photography into the Contemporary Art Museum.” Museum & Society 11 (2): 172–184. Geber, K. 2006. “Digital Heritage News Participatory Digital Cultural Content.” Museum International 58 (1–2): 121–122. Gentry, K. 2015. “‘The Pathos of Conservation’: Raphael Samuel and the Politics of Heritage.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (6): 561–576. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2014.953192. Graham, H., R. Mason, and N. Nayling. 2013. “The Personal is Still Political: Museums, Participation and Copyright.” Museum and Society 11 (2): 105–121. Hamilton, P., and L. Shopes, eds. 2008. Oral History and Public Memories. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press. Harrison, R. 2013. Heritage: Critical Approaches. London: Routledge. High, S., J. Mills, and S. Zembrzycki. 2012. “Telling Our Stories/Animating Our past: A Status Report on Oral History and Digital Media.” Canadian Journal of Communication 37: 383–403. Hogsden, C., and E. Poulter. 2012. “The Real Other? Museum Objects in Digital Contact Networks.” Journal of Material Culture 17 (3): 265–286. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1359183512453809. Kaplan, D., and E. Chacko. 2015. “Placing Immigrant Identities.” Journal of Cultural Geography 32 (1): 129–138. Kavanagh, G. 1996. Making Histories in Museums. London: Leicester University Press. Lloyd, K. 2014. “Narratives of Belonging and Exclusion: The Negotiation of Heritage and Place in Young People’s Conceptualisations of National Identity in Scotland.” PhD thesis, Newcastle University. Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations, EBSCOhost viewed 25 November 2015. Lombardo, V., and R. Damiano. 2012. “Storytelling on Mobile Devices for Cultural Heritage.” New Review of Hypermedia and Multimedia 18 (1–2): 11–35. Museums and the Web. 2015. “The Museum as Digital Storyteller: Collaborative Participatory Creation of Interactive Digital Experiences Conference.” Chicago, IL, April 8–11. http://mw2015.museumsandtheweb.com/paper/themuseum-as-digital-storyteller-collaborative-participatory-creation-of-interactive-digital-experiences/. Navarrete, T. 2013. “Digital Cultural Heritage.” In Handbook on the Economics of Cultural Heritage, edited by Rizzo, I. and A. Mignosa, 251–271. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. Phillips, R. 2003. “Community Collaboration in Exhibitions: Introduction.” In Museums and Source Communities, edited by L. Peers and A. K. Brown, 157–170. New York: Routledge. Pietrobruno, S. 2013. “YouTube and the Social Archiving of Intangible Heritage.” New Media & Society 15 (8): 1259–1276. Pocock, C., D. Collett, and L. Baulch. 2015. “Assessing Stories before Sites: Identifying the Tangible from the Intangible.” International Journal of Heritage Studies 21 (10): 962–982. Pratt, M. L. 1991. “Arts of the Contact Zone.” Profession 91: 33–40. Purkis, H. 2014. “Collecting the Home in Different Ways: SAMDOK’s Ethnographic Method Compared to Other Approaches.” In Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums, edited by O. Rhys and Z. Baveystock, 170–209. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Radmilli, R. 2011. “Ilhna Beltin: Locating Identity in a Fortified Mediterranean City.” In Local Heritage, Global Context: Cultural Perspectives on Sense of Place, edited by J. Schofield and R. Szymanski, 173–186. Surrey: Ashgate. Rahaman, H. 2015. “Digital Heritage Interpretation.” Accessed November 25, 2015. https://hafiz2010.wordpress.com/ Rhys, O., and Z. Baveystock, eds. 2014. Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Richie, D. A., ed. 2011. The Oxford Handbook of Oral History. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Rogaly, B., and B. Taylor. 2009. Moving Histories of Class and Community: Identity, Place and Belonging in Contemporary England. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Samuel, R. 2012. Theatres of Memory: Past and Present in Contemporary Culture. London: Verso. Sharron, S. and J. Abraham. 2015. “The Role of Curiosity in Making up Digital Content Promoting Cultural Heritage.” Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences 184: 259–265. Smith, R., and O. Iversen. 2014. “Participatory Heritage Innovation: Designing Dialogic Sites of Engagement.” Digital Creativity 25 (3): 255–268. Srinivasan, R. 2013. “Bridges between Cultural and Digital Worlds in Revolutionary Egypt.” The Information Society 29 (1): 49–60. Srinivasan, R., K. Becvar, R. Boast, and J. Enote. 2010. “Diverse Knowledges and Contact Zones within the Digital Museum.” Science, Technology & Human Values 35 (5): 735–768. Thompson, P. 2000. The Voice of the Past: Oral History. London: Oxford University Press. UNESCO. 2015. Concept of Digital Heritage. Accessed October 9, 2015. http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communicationand-information/access-to-knowledge/preservation-of-documentary-heritage/digital-heritage/concept-of-digitalheritage/ van der Velden, M. 2010. “Design for the Contact Zone.” In Proceedings: Cultural Attitudes towards Communication and Technology, edited by F. Sudweeks, H. Hrachovec, and C. Ess, 1–18. Perth: Murdoch University. Veronesi, F. 2014. “Curating the Sensorial: Digital Mediation and Social Engagement with Place, Objects and Intangible Heritage.” In Collecting the Contemporary: A Handbook for Social History Museums, edited by O. Rhys and Z. Baveystock, 484–513. Edinburgh: MuseumsEtc. Walker, B. M. 2012. A Political History of the Two Irelands. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Were, G. 2014. “Digital Heritage, Knowledge Networks, and Source Communities: Understanding Digital Objects in a Melanesian Society.” Museum Anthropology 37 (2): 133–143. Witcomb, A. 2003. Re-imagining the Museum. London: Routledge.

PY - 2016/5/30

Y1 - 2016/5/30

N2 - Actively creating new digital heritage content about people’s life historiesis part of the democratisation of heritage engagement with the public. Theapproach of documenting unofficial histories is supported by a growingliterature. Unofficial stories contribute new perspectives on the heritageidentity of a region. The case study of the ‘Local People’ exhibition, curatedby the author in 2013 in the North West of Ireland, is used to discuss themethodology of a digital curatorial process, www.localpeopleireland.com.This article argues that gathering and presenting unofficial histories ofindividuals’ life experiences, can disrupt official narratives of The Troublesand challenge a regional identity based on conflict and division. The makingof digital history is analysed as a curatorial process, rather than the easeof use of technology. The methods used included: filmed interviews, newportrait photography and the digitisation of family photograph albums.A virtual exhibition was produced and new digital historical sources werecreated that transform intangible heritage by crystallising people’s voicesand images into ‘tangible’ digital objects. ‘Local People’ utilised Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/localpeopleproject/?fref=ts and Vimeo https://vimeo.com/album/2518991. It is argued that the digital space provides a‘virtual contact zone’ in which diverse, unofficial and personal narrativescan be presented together.

AB - Actively creating new digital heritage content about people’s life historiesis part of the democratisation of heritage engagement with the public. Theapproach of documenting unofficial histories is supported by a growingliterature. Unofficial stories contribute new perspectives on the heritageidentity of a region. The case study of the ‘Local People’ exhibition, curatedby the author in 2013 in the North West of Ireland, is used to discuss themethodology of a digital curatorial process, www.localpeopleireland.com.This article argues that gathering and presenting unofficial histories ofindividuals’ life experiences, can disrupt official narratives of The Troublesand challenge a regional identity based on conflict and division. The makingof digital history is analysed as a curatorial process, rather than the easeof use of technology. The methods used included: filmed interviews, newportrait photography and the digitisation of family photograph albums.A virtual exhibition was produced and new digital historical sources werecreated that transform intangible heritage by crystallising people’s voicesand images into ‘tangible’ digital objects. ‘Local People’ utilised Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/localpeopleproject/?fref=ts and Vimeo https://vimeo.com/album/2518991. It is argued that the digital space provides a‘virtual contact zone’ in which diverse, unofficial and personal narrativescan be presented together.

KW - Digital heritage

KW - virtual exhibition

KW - curation

KW - local

KW - people

KW - history

U2 - 10.1080/13527258.2016.1190392

DO - 10.1080/13527258.2016.1190392

M3 - Article

VL - 2016

JO - International Journal of Heritage Studies

T2 - International Journal of Heritage Studies

JF - International Journal of Heritage Studies

SN - 1352-7258

ER -