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Archival echoes: too weak to survive or too far to travel?

Archival echoes: too weak to survive or too far to travel?

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Title: Archival echoes: too weak to survive or too far to travel?
Author: St.Onge, Anna
Abstract: The extensive archives of Lady Victoria Welby (1837-1912), the English self-educated philosopher and prolific letter-writer, have been held by York University in Toronto, Canada for over forty-five years. Yet, in that time, relatively little research has been conducted regarding her rich correspondence with over four hundred individuals (with notable exceptions). This presentation will address the history of the records themselves: their fragmentation due to the publishing efforts of Welby’s daughter, Nina Cust; the intervention of descendants to produce an attractive lot for sale to a North American institution; and the extraction of discrete correspondence by individual researchers in pursuit of their own scholarly goals. A speculative piece, I will attempt to identify historical and serendipitous factors that may have led to her exclusion from scholarly histories.
With the adoption of new tools and approaches to contextual information, as well as selective digitization of the archives, hitherto unexamined patterns and connections have surfaced in the remnants of Welby’s relationship with her vigorously cultivated network of correspondents. This presentation is part of a larger effort to boost awareness and visibility of the Welby archives in the scholarly community in order to actively insinuate her voice back into the scholarly discourse of late Victorian and Edwardian cultural studies. Overlaying this project is a question of the true impact of Welby: is her absence from the current canon of historical source material an accurate reflection of her contributions, or is it an unintended obscuration caused by the complex afterlife of her archives?
Subject: archives
Type: Presentation
Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10315/31067
Date: 2016-04-04

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Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada