2022/10/11 (TUE)

Online Seminar on Archival Activism for Environmental Justice (2022/11/03) organized by Research Center for Cooperative Civil Societies

Focusing on the topic of environmental justice, 4 archivists and a historian from South Africa and Japan will talk about their efforts to collect, preserve, provide access to, and promote use of the records and archives of grassroots movements.

Information on the Seminar

Date:November 3, 2022(Thu) Johannesburg 9AM-11AM, Tokyo 16PM-18PM
Language: English and Japanese with simultaneous interpretation
Zoom URL and other connection details will be sent by e-mail after registration

Gabriele Mohale, Acting Head, Historical Papers Research Archive & Wits Digitisation Centre, University of the Witwatersrand

Originally trained as a typesetter in Berlin, she studied Printing Technologies in Leipzig, and subsequently worked in that field for several years. Coming to South Africa in 1991, she completed a BA (Information Science) at the University of South Africa, and a MA (Heritage Studies) at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2009. Working at the Historical Papers Research Archive since 2007 as an archivist and since 2017 Acting Head, she was part of various archival and related digitisation projects. In recent years, she was also involved and became increasingly instrumental in accentuating the role and status of archives in civil society, in partnership with academic departments and civil society archives and organisations. Since 2020, she serves as a Bureau member of the Section on University and Research Institution Archives (SUV), of the International Council on Archives (ICA).

Debora Matthews, Contract Archivist, South African History Archive (SAHA), University of the Witwatersrand
She started her archival career at the Alan Paton Centre & Struggle Archives on the Pietermaritzburg campus of the University of KwaZulu-Natal in the early 1990s. Her growing interest in archives led her to complete a post-graduate course in archival studies during this time. SAHA’s archivist from 2009-2016, she became an archival consultant in 2017, working primarily with the Public Affairs Research Institute (PARI) and the GALA Queer Archive (in collaboration with GALE Publishing), before returning to SAHA in 2021 to supervise the relocation of SAHA from Constitution Hill back to Wits University. She currently manages the day to day running of the archive. Debora has a special interest in archival activism and its crucial role in shaping South Africa’s archival landscape.

Hatsue Koizumi, Staff member, Minamata Disease Center Soshisha
Born in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture in 1991. While studying on environmental issues as a student at College of Asia Pacific Studies (APS) at Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, her research topic did not include Minamata disease. However, after visiting Minata following advice from her thesis supervisor, she took interest in the ongoing issues in the once-pollution-affected city. She moved to Minamata upon joining Minamata Disease Center Soshisha in 2015. As a staff member of the Center established in 1974 to support Minamata disease victims, she is involved in a variety of enterprise such as the sales of organic orange produced in the area or coordinating school visits. She is also active in managing the Center’s huge archival collections related to the Minamata disease and acquired the qualification as a museum curator in 2021 after completing a course by distant learning at Osaka Art University. At present, she is also involved in Minamata: Eyes of the Photographers project, aiming at preserving and making available the photographic legacy of 9 renowned photographers who reported on Minamata.

Izumi Hirano, Archivist, Research Center for Cooperative Civil Societies, Rikkyo University
She is an “accidental” archivist whose life was changed by finding a part-time job organizing a grassroots movement’s records in 2001. Enchanted by the human aspects and complexity of archival work, she studied Archival Science at Gakushuin University and became an archivist at the Research Center for Cooperative Civil Societies at Rikkyo University in 2010. While her work at present is focused on traditional records and other information resources created by a variety of agents in civil society since the mid-20th century, she is also interested in preparing her organization for digitally acquiring and preserving records of civil society organizations or transient activism.

Noor Nieftagodien, Professor of History, the South African Research Chair in Local Histories and the Head of the History Workshop at the University of the Witwatersrand

He is the co-author, with Phil Bonner, of books on township histories (Alexandra – A History and Kathorus - A History) and urban history (Ekurhuleni – The Making of an Urban Region). He has also published books on student politics (The Soweto Uprising and Students Must Rise) and co-edited books on liberation movements (One Hundred Years of the ANC – Debating Liberation Histories Today and the forthcoming Labour Struggles in Southern Africa, 1919-1949: New Perspective on the Industrial and Commercial Workers' Union). His current Public History projects are on the Congress of South African Students and the South African Council on Sport, respectively the leading high school student and sports movement in the struggle against apartheid. The History Workshop is also a partner in various community history and archives projects, which focus on co-producing histories (collecting of life history interviews, exhibitions, websites and publications) and archives.

Archives Hub (Witwatersrand University: Wits History Workshop, Historical Papers Research Archive and South African History Archive(SAHA))
Research Center for Cooperative Civil Societies, Rikkyo University

Registration is now open at https://forms.gle/ELV5bUhtmKKQ8Fup6
For more information, please contact
Izumi Hirano at kyousei@rikkyo.ac.jp

Witwatersrand University, Historical Papers Research Archive

Witwatersrand University, South African History Archive

Witwatersrand University, History Workshop

Minamata Disease Center Soshisha

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