“Queering Archives: Intimate Tracings” is the second of two themed issues from Radical History Review (numbers 120 and 122) that explore the ways in which the notion of the “queer archive” is increasingly crucial for scholars working at the intersection of history, sexuality, and gender. Efforts to record and preserve queer experiences determine how scholars account for the past and provide a framework for understanding contemporary queer life. Essays in these issues consider historical materials from queer archives around the world as well as the recent critical practice of “queering” the archive by looking at historical collections for queer content (and its absence).
This issue considers how archives allow historical traces of sexuality and gender to be sought, identified, recorded, and assembled into accumulations of meaning. Contributors explore conundrums in contemporary queer archival methods, probing some of them in essays on the Catholic Church and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This issue also includes a series of intergenerational interviews reflecting on histories of LGBT archives, a roundtable discussion about legacies of queer studies of the archive, and a closing reflection by Joan Nestle, a founding figure in the practice of international queer archiving.