Para-archives are informal accounts, idiosyncratic collections and poetic inventories of various excerpts
from the surrounding world. The prefix para- takes on several meanings here. As the etymology
indicates, coming from the Greek the term denotes that which happens
beside, is amiss and out of place. But para- might also mean a state of being
distant from and yet analogous to something or someone (as in paramilitary).
Here, the prefix para- is used primarily to indicate the parallel nature of
personal collecting and archiving in relation to other streams of everyday life, and also as
to differentiate them from other, official archiving practices undertaken
by, for example, memory institutions (such as state archives and museums),
concerned with the formalization, accumulation, preservation, and
administration of historical documents. Besides that, para-archiving can be seen as one that occurs parallel to other kinds of both
voluntary and non-voluntary, automated, imperceptible capturing and
micro-archiving practices and mechanisms inscribed deeply in the workings of today's computational technologies and network services.
If you engage in para-archival practices yourself, or know of someone
who does, and would like to collaborate on a booklet within the series, please get in touch directly via the same email address.
Also, do not hestitate to get in touch if you would like to organize a talk, presentation or workshop on para-archiving and
creative techniques of documenting everyday life.