Archives as Activism
(when in QUARANTINE)

Monday, April 13, 2020  /  5 pm - 6 pm

A Virtual Discussion

MIRANDA MIMS (co-founder of the Nomadic Archivist Project; Special Collections Archivist in the Department of Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation at the University of Rochester)

SHAWN(TA) SMITH-CRUZ (co-coordinator of Lesbian Herstory Archives; Associate Dean for Teaching Learning, and Engagement of NYU Libraries)

Moderated by:
STEVEN G. FULLWOOD (co-founder of the Nomadic Archivists Project; Project Director for the Center for Black Visual Culture-NYU)

How do we as activists, community members, practitioners, advocates, documentarians, artists, and researchers actively engage with archives and cultural histories during a pandemic and while in quarantine? The speakers will facilitate an open discussion on the challenges of community archival work in and outside of quarantine, with an aim to brainstorm and reimagine experiences and observations about new archival initiatives, and discuss the things we can do during this current historical moment.

Sponsored by:
The Institute of African American Affairs & Center for Black Visual Culture
New York University

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Meeting ID: 294 482 407
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MIRANDA MIMS is the Special Collections Archivist for Discovery and Access and Curator of modern literature and publishers, human rights and social justice, and local LGBTQ history and culture in the Department of Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation (RBSCP) at the University of Rochester. She is the co-founder of the Nomadic Archivist Project (NAP), an awardee of the Society of American Archivists Foundation (SAAF).  NAP is an initiative devoted to developing relationships and beginning conversations around preserving legacy, memory, connection, and trust in the African diaspora. Mims is formerly an archivist at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and at Catholic University's Department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literature and its Institute of Christian Oriental Research (ICOR).


SHAWN(TA) SMITH-CRUZ is a co-coordinator at the Lesbian Herstory Archives, and Chair of Archives for CLAGS: The Center for LGBTQ Studies at the Graduate Center.  She is also a Zinster, disseminating her Zine, Black Lesbians in the 70’s and Before: An at Home Tour at the Lesbian Herstory Archives. Her recent archival projects exhibit the Salsa Soul Sisters, the first lesbian of color organization in NYC, and digitized the newsletters of CLAGS, providing open access to LGBTQ academic history since 1991. Shawn has a BS in Queer Women’s Studies from the CUNY Baccalaureate Program, an MFA in Creative Writing/Fiction, and an MLS with a focus on Archiving and Records Management from Queens College. She currently serves as Associate Dean for Teaching Learning, and Engagement of NYU Libraries. You can learn more about her work at


STEVEN G. FULLWOOD, founder of the In the Life Archive (and moderator), is the co-founder of the Nomadic Archivists Project, currently serves as the project director for the Center for Black Visual Culture at New York University.



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