The Southern Labor Studies Association will hold its bi-annual conference, Memory vs. Forgetting: Southern Labor and the Archive, April 7-10, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. The conference will also serve as LAWCHA’s annual meeting.
Students of colonial and post-colonial societies have thought about how the very materials historians rely on to reconstruct the past—“the archive”—themselves are constituted by that past, rather than a transparent window onto it.
To coincide with the 40th anniversary of the Southern Labor Archives at GSU, the 15th Southern Labor Studies Conference proposes to turn a similar self-critical gaze on the materials labor historians rely on to produce the field of “labor history.” How does the very process of locating, constructing, and organizing the “archive” of labor and working class history shape (and constrain) the very meaning of what historians and archivists treat as labor, the worker, or the working class? How have shifting archival fashions changed our understanding of labor's history? How has the “archive”, in the broadest sense, abetted or impeded the “struggle of memory against forgetting.”
The conference seeks to promote common dialogue among labor historians, the archivists they depend on to locate, construct, and organize the “archive” of working class history (especially in the U.S. South), filmmakers injecting labor stories into public culture, and the activists who keep alive a flame for labor’s future. How, we want to ask collectively, can preserving, interrogating, and making visible labor’s past help contribute to its potential future?
The conference will be at the Sheraton Atlanta (http://www.sheratonatlantahotel.com/), which has reserved a special room block for SLSA attendees. Rooms are $129/night (double, does not include taxes and fees) and can be reserved by calling 888-625-5144.
Too see the program and register, visit the following link: http://www.southernlaborstudies.org . Advance registration fees are $65 for SLSA members, $90 for non-members, and $40 for students. Early registration will end March 15, 2011.
Traci Drummond firstname.lastname@example.org
co-chairs, Conference Committee
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