The purpose of this work is to recognize the lack of queer of color lens within the archival profession that determines the appraisal, preservation, and impeding access. Queering the archive transforms the institution with possibilities of inclusivity for social justice and the rewriting of histories. Traditionally, the archival institution has reaffirmed hegemonic power structures by erasing and ignoring histories of marginalized communities. A way to disrupt this is to queer these archival institutions to confront these power dynamics and make interventions against the racist, sexist, classist and heterosexist structures that maintain them. Thus, this paper focuses on how processing through a queer of color lens can transform archival institutions by contextualizing and uncovering erased archival histories. Specifically, I will discuss the Sarah S. Valencia Collection, a manuscript collection of a Mexican-American woman and her family dating back to the 1860s in Tucson, Arizona. As a queer Chicana feminist archivist with a queer of color lens, I read many of the contents of the archive differently. Through a visual representation of photographs, a seemingly heterosexual woman, shows moments of queerness that could have only been discovered through a queer of color lens.
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"Queering the Archive: Transforming the Archival Process,"
disClosure: A Journal of Social Theory: Vol. 27, Article 17.
Available at: https://uknowledge.uky.edu/disclosure/vol27/iss1/17