Institutt for arkiv, biblioteks- og informasjonsfag ved OsloMet deltar i prosjektet Polyvocal Interpretations of Contested Colonial Heritage (PICCH) som er et forskningsprosjekt finansiert under utlysningen Cultural Heritage, Identities & Perspectives: Responding to Changing Societies utført av Joint Programming Inititative (JPI) on Cultural Heritage i 2020. Prosjektet ledes av Sheffield Hallam University, UK, og har følgende partnere: Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (NL), Aix Marseille University (FR), selskapet VoiceInteraction - Tecnologias de Processamento da Fala (PT) og OsloMet (NO). Pia Borlund er PI ved OsloMet. I OsloMet teamet deltar også Nils Pharo, i tillegg skal det ansettes en seniorforsker. Prosjektet har budsjett på 1.228.278 euro og varighet fra 2021 til 2023.
Many memory institutions across Europe contain holdings connected with its colonial past which
for many years has been a focus of contestation from both communities of origin, ethnic
minorities and civil society at large. Challenging questions are being asked by
professionals in the field as to what to do with this problematic cultural heritage, from returning
items when appropriate, to rewriting the historical context surrounding them in a more critical
and inclusive way. This project aims to identify key instances of colonial audio-visual heritage
across the three archives involved, draw a common map of shared racialised representations
connected with their respective imperial contexts, identify problematic visualisation and
language and open up a dialogue between the archives and a variety of users, including
archivists, researchers, filmmakers, and grassroots organisations.
The digitised colonial audio-visual heritage is provided by three national archives: The
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision, the French Institut national de l'audiovisuel and Pitt
Rivers Museum in Oxford, UK. All these archives have a rich collection of original film and sound,
some of it produced at the height of empire, ranging from ethnographers' footage for
'educational' purposes to more direct propaganda films to bolster colonial ideologies. We will
explore how archival material created in a ‘colonial mindset’ can be re-appropriated and
re-interpreted critically to become an effective source for the 'decolonization of the mind' and
the basis for a future inclusive society.
The overall outcome of PICCH is to engender a polyvocality that can be incorporated into the
archive itself providing new ways to enter and explore the past via a contemporary
interpretative frame. To this effect advanced technologies will be used to study how to bridge
archival and contemporary languages, and to support transnational exploration of multiple
archives via a single interactive user interface.