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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The record keeping practices of women’s organizations : a case study of three organizations in Vancouver, British Columbia Buhlmann, Jana Patricia


Examination of the context of record creation, maintenance, and use is a valuable tool which allows the archivist to build a body of knowledge regarding archival records and their creators. Such knowledge enables the archivist to make informed decisions in all realms of archival practice. This discussion focuses upon the women's organization, undertaking a case study of three organizations in Vancouver, British Columbia in order to provide information about their record keeping practices. The case study employs open-ended focus interviews, observation, and document analysis, where provided. Participants are selected based upon their involvement in the creation, maintenance, and use of records in their respective organizations. They are asked to provide information as to the administrative history of the organization and to describe the processes by which they receive, create, use, organize, maintain, and destroy records. Participants are also asked to characterize their organization and its record keeping practices as they relate to the concept of a women's organization. A framework for analysis is established, which allows for further characterization of each women's organization. This framework addresses the voluntary nature of most women's organizations, as well as their unique processes and forms. Three models are presented which allow for further characterization of the history, structure, and practices of each organization. The distinctive internal processes, forms, and record keeping practices of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, the Western Businesswomen's Association, and the West Coast Women's Legal Education and Action Fund are presented. The thesis concludes by providing recommendations regarding further explorations of record creation, maintenance, and use and their value for the archival profession.

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