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RECORDS AND THE UNDERSTANDING OF VIOLENT EVENTS: ARCHIVAL DOCUMENTATION, HISTORICAL PERCEPTION, AND THE NO GUN RI MASSACRE IN THE KOREAN WAR

Sinn, Donghee (2008) RECORDS AND THE UNDERSTANDING OF VIOLENT EVENTS: ARCHIVAL DOCUMENTATION, HISTORICAL PERCEPTION, AND THE NO GUN RI MASSACRE IN THE KOREAN WAR. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh.

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    Abstract

    The archival community has long shown an interest in documenting history, and it has been assumed that archival materials are one of the major sources of historical research. However, little is known about how much impact archival holdings actually have on historical research, what role they play in building public knowledge about a historical event and how they contribute to the process of recording history. The case of the No Gun Ri incident provides a good example of how archival materials play a role in historical discussions and a good opportunity to look at archival contributions. This dissertation examines how archival materials were discovered and used in the process of identifying the controversies raised in No Gun Ri research by examining the earliest to the most recent publications, their authors¡¯ patterns of conducting their research and their perceptions on using archives. In doing so, a content analysis of No Gun Ri publications was employed and interviews with No Gun Ri researchers were conducted for this study. In No Gun Ri research, archival documents were essential source materials for details about the incident and a major player in stimulating heated controversies and discussions and, consequently, provided the impetus for further publications by No Gun Ri researchers. Archival documents were especially critical for specific details of the incident as well as a good source for background and circumstantial information. General record keeping situations - such as missing documents - also provided a circumstantial context of the incident. However, No Gun Ri researchers agreed that oral history was the most valuable and influential evidence for their major ideas and used archival documents to provide hard facts about the details of oral history. There are some unique research patterns of No Gun Ri researchers identified in this study which are different from typical assumptions of archivists.Archival programs should have an accurate understanding about how their holdings are used (or not used) and why; consequently, this study regarding the use of archival materials in the evolution of the discussion of the No Gun Ri massacre will provide the fundamental information within an empirical framework.


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    Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
    Creators/Authors:
    CreatorsEmailORCID
    Sinn, Dongheedhsinn@yahoo.com
    ETD Committee:
    ETD Committee TypeCommittee MemberEmailORCID
    Committee ChairCox, Richard Jrcox@sis.pitt.edu
    Committee MemberDetlefsen, Ellen Gellen@sis.pitt.edu
    Committee MemberBastian, Jeannette Ajeannette.bastian@simmons.edu
    Committee MemberGracy, Karen Fkgracy@pitt.edu
    Title: RECORDS AND THE UNDERSTANDING OF VIOLENT EVENTS: ARCHIVAL DOCUMENTATION, HISTORICAL PERCEPTION, AND THE NO GUN RI MASSACRE IN THE KOREAN WAR
    Status: Unpublished
    Abstract: The archival community has long shown an interest in documenting history, and it has been assumed that archival materials are one of the major sources of historical research. However, little is known about how much impact archival holdings actually have on historical research, what role they play in building public knowledge about a historical event and how they contribute to the process of recording history. The case of the No Gun Ri incident provides a good example of how archival materials play a role in historical discussions and a good opportunity to look at archival contributions. This dissertation examines how archival materials were discovered and used in the process of identifying the controversies raised in No Gun Ri research by examining the earliest to the most recent publications, their authors¡¯ patterns of conducting their research and their perceptions on using archives. In doing so, a content analysis of No Gun Ri publications was employed and interviews with No Gun Ri researchers were conducted for this study. In No Gun Ri research, archival documents were essential source materials for details about the incident and a major player in stimulating heated controversies and discussions and, consequently, provided the impetus for further publications by No Gun Ri researchers. Archival documents were especially critical for specific details of the incident as well as a good source for background and circumstantial information. General record keeping situations - such as missing documents - also provided a circumstantial context of the incident. However, No Gun Ri researchers agreed that oral history was the most valuable and influential evidence for their major ideas and used archival documents to provide hard facts about the details of oral history. There are some unique research patterns of No Gun Ri researchers identified in this study which are different from typical assumptions of archivists.Archival programs should have an accurate understanding about how their holdings are used (or not used) and why; consequently, this study regarding the use of archival materials in the evolution of the discussion of the No Gun Ri massacre will provide the fundamental information within an empirical framework.
    Date: 31 January 2008
    Date Type: Completion
    Defense Date: 09 July 2007
    Approval Date: 31 January 2008
    Submission Date: 03 December 2007
    Access Restriction: No restriction; The work is available for access worldwide immediately.
    Patent pending: No
    Institution: University of Pittsburgh
    Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
    Refereed: Yes
    Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
    URN: etd-12032007-154818
    Uncontrolled Keywords: archival contribution; archival documentation; archival user study; historical conception; korean war records
    Schools and Programs: School of Information Sciences > Library and Information Science
    Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 15:07
    Last Modified: 16 May 2012 13:18
    Other ID: http://etd.library.pitt.edu/ETD/available/etd-12032007-154818/, etd-12032007-154818

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