This post is based on the original post on the Facebook page, “Archive of Tamils in Norway”, on 05th June 2020.
Tamils in Norway, as well as around other diaspora countries, are taking their own and private initiative to document and preserve their language, culture, history, migration, social structures, their life back home and their life in the diaspora.
Their documentation and preservation activities are carried out by private individuals and Tamil organisations in Norway. Those activities are much appreciated and have a huge role in society for present and future generations.
The purpose of documenting and preserving archival materials is to make them available for public access. When the archival materials are accessible and available for public use, the history will be remembered and will continue to live. Otherwise, the documentation will remain unknown and hidden and lost forever. The history will then be forgotten.
To prevent this, we have to preserve public access.
Public access can be given through digital access or physical access.
An example of public access in digital form is Noolaham Foundation.
Otherwise, public access can be secured by preserving our archival materials at Norwegian archival institutions. Sadly, there are no archival materials to tell about Norwegian-Tamil cultural heritage at Norwegian archival institutions.
I observed that Tamils have a variety of questions, doubts regarding how to document or preserve, and giving away their archival materials for long term preservation at archival institutions. Most of the time they are overprotected which can lead to hidden and lost history.
Please do not forget that you are keeping a piece of Tamil cultural and historical heritage at your home. Please give the public access to that heritage.