The public and the relational: The collaborative practices of the Inclusive Archive of Learning Disability History

Graham, Helen; Green, Victoria; Headon, Kassie; Ingham, Nigel; Ledger, Susan; Minnion, Andy; Richards, Rowena and Tilley, Elizabeth (2020). The public and the relational: The collaborative practices of the Inclusive Archive of Learning Disability History. In: Popple, Simon; Prescott, Andrew and Mutibwa, Daniel H. eds. Communities, Archives and New Collaborative Practices. Connected Communities. Bristol: Policy Press, pp. 219–234.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781447341895.003.0016

Abstract

This chapter discusses the Inclusive Archive of Learning Disability History. It points to a collaborative relationship between the political ideas derived from public political logics — public service, public sphere, ‘on behalf of the public’ and for posterity — and those that derive from relational and personal-centred politics. Rather than favouring one or the other, the chapter argues that for an archive to be an archive, and for it to be an inclusive one, an approach to archival practice that held both the public and the relational political traditions in dialogue needed to be developed. Both political traditions have a history of being very effectively expressed in the learning disability self-advocacy movement as speaking up and being heard, and of arguing for services to start with the individual by being more ‘person-centered’. As such, the chapter reveals that the task of this archive is to explore fruitful combinations and collaborations between the two political traditions.

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