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Roelof Hol

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Sharing Archives: Nation State and National Identity in a Global World. The Mutual Cultural Heritage Program of the Nationaal Archief of the Netherlands
Roelof Hol

Archives without borders
August, 30th 2010
Peace Palace, The Hague

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Roelof Hol

  1. 1. What is Mutual Cultural Heritage : framework regarding nation and national identity <ul><li>Definition </li></ul><ul><li>“ MCH we define as remnants of a past that the Dutch shared with others: buildings, archives, schipwrecks, museum object and immaterial heritage This might be heritage in other countries dating from the time of VOC (Dutch eats indies company) and the WIC (West Indian Company or from our colonial past in Asia, Africa and South-America </li></ul><ul><li>International archival aspects: </li></ul><ul><li>*since 70ties reports by Unesco, ICA, CITRA on shared memory, joint heritage </li></ul><ul><li>*1995 ICA: View of the archival community settling disputed archival claims </li></ul>
  2. 2. Countries involved Mutual Cultural Heritage
  3. 3. <ul><li>Conservation & preservation </li></ul><ul><li>Strengthening & training local capacities </li></ul><ul><li>Dissemination of knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Enlarging the awareness of mutual history </li></ul><ul><li>Enlarging the accesability MCH-archives </li></ul><ul><li>Stimulating the research in MCH-archives </li></ul>Targets MCH-program Mutual Cultural Heritage
  4. 4. <ul><li>Financed by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs </li></ul><ul><li>Each year: 2 M euro, 1 by the heritage institutions and 1 by the Dutch embassy in MCH-country </li></ul><ul><li>Relevant projectproposals by national or local institutions through embassies and heritage institutions </li></ul><ul><li>Heritageinstitutions: no direct money, expertise, manpower, training etc. </li></ul>Finances Mutual Cultural Heritage
  5. 5. MCH-Program: Dutch institutions involved Program NA Program ICN ProgramRcE
  6. 6. Multilateral Projects: example Paleografie <ul><li>Archival records written in Dutch from the 17th and 18th century: incomprehensible for local researchers </li></ul><ul><li>Inventorisation of problems and solutions on paleography and the Dutch language </li></ul><ul><li>Coöperation with archival and university institutions necessary </li></ul>Mutual Cultural Heritage
  7. 7. MCH-Program: future <ul><li>MCH-conference in November 2010: development international portal in cooperation with Dutch heritage Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>Lasting relationships between countries involved in the MCH-program but also broadenin g of the geographiccal scope </li></ul><ul><li>Main targets: lasting cooperation, durability preservation of archives and global accesability through digitzation </li></ul>Mutual Cultural Heritage
  8. 8. Sharing Archives: nation and national identity in a global world: principles <ul><li>Decolonisation: issues of transferring archives, returning archives </li></ul><ul><li>Administrative, historical, emotional reasons for debate </li></ul><ul><li>Report Unesco 1976: sharing memories, joint heritage, </li></ul><ul><li>ICA 1995; view of the archival community on settling disputed archival claims: </li></ul><ul><li>1. inalienability of archives </li></ul><ul><li>2. inalienability of provenance </li></ul><ul><li>3. the right of access </li></ul><ul><li>4. international coöperation </li></ul><ul><li>Code of ethics: art. 2 </li></ul>
  9. 9. Sharing archives: nation and national identity in a global world: practical issues <ul><li>History: differences between colonial countries regarding keeping the colonial records: over ther or @ home </li></ul><ul><li>Preservation issues: tropical situation </li></ul><ul><li>Quality process of seperation </li></ul><ul><li>Practical considerations: some Dutch examples </li></ul><ul><li>1. Seperation Kingdom of Belgium and The Netherlands </li></ul><ul><li>2. Returning occupied German territories after WW II </li></ul><ul><li>3. Private archive of refugee from Austrian-Hungary </li></ul><ul><li>Seperate actions on exchanges of historical documents or repatriation after WW II </li></ul><ul><li>Line of treaties prevailed </li></ul>
  10. 10. Sharing archives: nation and national identity in a global world: case study Indonesia <ul><li>Historical background: Landsarchief around 1880 </li></ul><ul><li>Historical background: independance 1945-1949 </li></ul><ul><li>Process of separation: difficult </li></ul><ul><li>Phase I: returning material </li></ul><ul><li>Phase II: preservation, microfilming, accessability </li></ul><ul><li>Cooperation Arsip Nasional Republik Indonesia and Nationaal Archief: microfilming, training archivists </li></ul><ul><li>Historical material colonial period: about 10 km </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions: archivistic principles and innterests of researchers prevailed, continuous cooperation (TANAP, MCH) </li></ul>
  11. 11. Sharing archives; nation and national identity in a global world: case study Suriname <ul><li>Historical background: no specific archival building in 19th century </li></ul><ul><li>Endangered archives: transfer of archives to the Netherlands in 1916 and later years </li></ul><ul><li>Agreement on returning the archives in 1916 </li></ul><ul><li>Conditions: housing according to standard, trained staff </li></ul><ul><li>Program returning Archives: 3.8M Euros, 7 years, ca. 800 meters </li></ul><ul><li>Phase 1; conservation and preservation of damaged material </li></ul><ul><li>Phase 2; Digitization of all the archives that are returned </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions: no principle issue on returning archives, prevailing interests of researchers as well as in Suriname as in The Netherlands </li></ul>
  12. 12. Sharing archives: nation and national identity in a global world: fuutre developments and possibilities <ul><li>Dutch Antilles: dissolution of the Dutch Antilles and archival issues </li></ul><ul><li>Policy Nationaal Archief: continuity existing plans </li></ul><ul><li>Solutions to possible issues: digitization </li></ul><ul><li>Sensible to emotional values relevant to national identity </li></ul><ul><li>Mutual heritage: just heritage? </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Thank you for your attention </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Questions? </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 13. New Nationaal Archief Suriname

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