Archiving in the Digital Age


Salman Rushdie donated his personal archive to Emory University’s Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (MARBL) in 2006. Much of Rushdie’s personal archive was digital, a form that creates new problems for modern librarians to contend with. Consider, for example, Rushdie’s PowerMac from the mid-90s. It still functioned when he donated it, but librarians had to create an emulator to allow visitors access to the delicate electronics. Outmoded technologies—think floppy disks—often create problems for archivists as innovation marches on.

Dan Rockmore explains further at the New Yorker.

Ian MacAllen is the author of Red Sauce: How Italian Food Became American (Rowman & Littlefield, April 2022). His writing has appeared in Chicago Review of Books, Southern Review of Books, The Offing, 45th Parallel Magazine, Little Fiction, Vol 1. Brooklyn, and elsewhere. He tweets @IanMacAllen and is online at More from this author →