Traditions, archives and change
Chapter, Peer reviewed
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Original versionKvifte, T. Traditions, archives and change. In: Fiskvik, A.M. & Stranden, M. [Eds.]. (Re)Searching the Field. Festschrift in Honour of Egil Bakka. p. 289-300. Bergen: Fagbokforlaget, 2014
In the Nordic countries, there are several archives containing documentation of traditional music and dance. The ways in which the material in the archives are produced, distributed and used, may influence the very tradition that is docu- mented in various ways. The documentation practice has changed over the years since collection started: from relying mainly on writing as the medium of docu- mentation, to the use of audio-visual media. The development of media technol- ogy has, likewise, also affected the use and distribution of archival material. The author discusses the different processes of collecting, cataloguing, and accessing archival material, and ties this to a discussion of concepts relevant to the description of processes of tradition, with authors like Nyiri and Rolf as a point of departure. Focussing on music, the article argues that archives tip the scales in the direction of products rather than processes for several reasons, partly because of the more or less pronounced heritage from the national romantic view on art where products in the form of works of art are more important than the creative process, and partly because variational processes ??personal or regional ??are not very well documented in the archives.