Reparative Description: Fundamentals

  • Luke, S. M. (Invited speaker)
  • Sharon Mizota (Invited speaker)

Activity: Talk typesInvited talk


Do your archives contain legacy finding aids that employ outdated or derogatory language? Are you planning to embark on a descriptive project representing an underrepresented group of people? Describing records related to women, people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals and communities, and those with disabilities can present a challenge to traditional archival values like “neutrality” (which was never really neutral) and “objectivity” (impossible!). With the recent rise in attention to issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility in description, many archivists are interested in redressing the harms and erasures caused by inaccurate and disrespectful language. This webinar provides practical guidelines for embarking on a reparative description project. Through examination of real-life examples and a review of existing resources, we explore the key issues and best practices for making your collection descriptions more accurate, representative, and respectful of the people they represent and serve.
PeriodJun 8 2022
Held atSociety of American Archivists
Degree of RecognitionNational


  • reparative description
  • archives
  • digital collections
  • diversity
  • inclusion
  • equity
  • metadata