Looking at the khmer rouge archives through the lens of the records continuum model: Towards an appropriated archive continuum model

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    Abstract

    Introduction. The records continuum model was developed in Australia in the 1990s to make sense of the multiple contexts in which records are created and managed. It has been applied to a variety of cases and contexts. The present article discusses its adequacy to represent the archival processes that take place in archives which are forcibly acquired following a violent regime change. Method. This article applies continuum modelling to the case of the Khmer Rouge archive of the Tuol Sleng interrogation and incarceration centre. This approach is supplemented by historical and historiographical research. Analysis. The analysis reveals some of the limitations of the records continuum model to explain the archival processes that took place at the time when the Tuol Sleng Archive was appropriated by the Cambodian government that succeeded the Khmer Rouge. Results. The author proposes an appropriated archive continuum model which better represents the processes involved in constructing a new political archive with records from an original archive. Conclusions. The appropriated archive continuum model presented in this article helps to explain the processes that occurred in the case of the Tuol Sleng Archive. More research is needed to ascertain whether it applies to other cases of politically appropriated archives.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number771
    JournalInformation Research
    Volume22
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017

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