At Pop Up Archive, we’re collecting old sounds and making them searchable. As we watched the headlines roll in last year, we couldn’t help but notice how often sounds from the past are echoed in today’s news. So, for your listening pleasure, here are some of our favorite archival complements to the year’s biggest stories:
- In March, Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg’s controversial treatise on women in leadership roles, was released. In this episode of The Broad Experience, women from generations X and Y come together (with wine) for a thorough vetting of Sandberg’s advice.
- August marked the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. In this 1975 speech, MLK Sr. reflects on civil rights and the death of his son.
- The U.S. government plays an annual game of chicken with government shutdown. This year they took it over the edge. Flashback to 2011 in this episode of Democracy Now as the government narrowly avoids calamity.
- November 22 was the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas, Texas. Listen to reporter Charlie Meyerson’s interview with lawyer Howard Willens, who supervised the Warren Commission investigation.
- Healthcare.gov made its (halting) debut. From the 2004 presidential domestic policy debate, John Kerry and George W. Bush spar over the then far-off idea of universal health care. (Things get health-y around 7 minutes in.)
- Nelson Mandela died at age 95 on December 5. In Mandela: An Audio History, Radio Diaries compiled rare archival audio, including a lost recording of the 1964 trial that resulted in Mandela’s life sentence.
- Following Edward Snowden’s leak of classified documents, a federal judge upheld the National Security Agency’s right to collect U.S. phone data. Surveillance isn’t new: listen to a 1983 examination of technology for nationalistic purposes.
- On a lighter note: Beyoncé unexpectedly dropped a self-titled album in December that went platinum within a week. WBEZ’s Sound Opinions reviews Beyoncé and closes out 2013.
Stay tuned to the Idea Lab for blog posts from Pop Up Archive in the coming months about digital audio rights issues and advances in speech-to-text technology.
Anne has worked with independent producers The Kitchen Sisters and national grant agencies to identify preservation and access opportunities for independent radio. She holds a Master’s degree from the University of California Berkeley in Information Management and Systems, where she focused in digital archives and the sociology of technology. She contributed to the creation of The Discipline of Organizing, a textbook in use at I Schools nationwide that unites perspectives about organizing from engineering, library science, and other fields. She is a 2012 SoundCloud Community Fellow and winner of the 2012 Knight News Challenge: Data. Before arriving in California, Anne lived in France, and managed a historic newspaper digitization project at Brown University.