I like to tell stories. There’s nothing more human than telling a story. I think that if you could find the substance that makes us human and distil it down to its individual components you’d find that narrative is a fundamental building block.
But a story is only human. Stories come from nowhere else in the universe, but they are hugely important: Especially history.
History is written by the victors. Or so the saying goes. It’s quite an unpleasant thought: That the history we know is mostly made up of the proclamations of the person with the bigger army. The person with more money. The person who has greater luck.
History is not a record, history is a gigantic, seething, stinking mass. It grows in places and shrinks in others. It disappears and reappears. It’s malleable and it’s imperfect. What makes move like this is YOU.
History is usually written by the victors, but there’s one other place where history may be written: a quiet, cold, still institution known as the archive. It’s a place where human production and records are quietly stowed away, with the confidence that it is of importance and that it will tell a story. As time passes, its selection of keepsakes mature into potent traces of a fleeting point in the human continuum. It begins to develop a narrative and before long history isn’t being directed with bloodshed, terror and coercion. It is instead nurtured and brought to light and able to read in a plethora of ways.