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File/Life: We Remember Stories from Pennhurst

April 20 - April 23

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File/Life is a community-led creative exploration of the Pennhurst archives by seven archivists, all people with disabilities and/or family members, including two former Pennhurst residents. These community archivists share stories that made them listen, feel, imagine, and remember. In doing so, they ask the question: Can a file ever contain a life?

The material held in the Pennhurst archives includes administrative reports, court testimony, diagnostic forms, medical logs, field notes, and institutional correspondence. Some files include more personal documents, like letters from family members. The files  provide clues that we can use to try and understand the past, but they alone do not tell a complete story. Often, archival research is done by scholars, but archives belong to all of us. What new stories might we find in the archives if we have personal connections to the history in the files? In collaboration with artists, including a filmmaker, an oral historian, an archivist and a community arts producer, the File/Life community archivists spent two years learning, creating, and sharing stories from the Pennhurst files.

Thursday – Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Relaxed hours: Thursday – Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Admission is free. Ticket reservations are recommended.


Temple University Institute On Disabilities