Human and Machine Entanglement in the Digital Archive: Academic Libraries and Socio-Technical Change

This essay urges a broadening of the discourse of library and information science (LIS) to address the convergence of forces shaping the information environment. It proposes adopting a model from the field of science studies that acknowledges the interdependence and coevolution of social, cultural, and material phenomena. Digital archives and library collections are technocultural artifacts. To understand the entanglement of technologies, institutions, and practices in the production of the digital archive, we must transcend disciplinary divisions and engage in more nuanced and historically informed analysis. This work will provide an appreciation of the myriad ways in which tools shape and inflect the research process.