Barry Amiel and Norman Melburn Trust 2021

Barry Amiel and Norman Melburn Trust Archive

An online archive of radical writings from the last 70 years of social change.
A screenshot of the archive website’s home page

To make change, social movements must understand their past. Only by learning from the past can we be inspired by previous struggles, avoid mistakes and rejoin long abandoned pathways to liberation and justice.

We were thrilled to help the Barry Amiel and Norman Melburn Trust build a new version of their online archive. The archive contains almost 70 years of radical writing, including writings by Stuart Hall and E.P. and Dorothy Thompson.

Titles like Red Rag illustrate the richness of feminist history. Race & Class considers the complex interaction of these forms of oppression. Black Dwarf writes from the heady days of the late 1960s. The whole archive of the influential Marxism Today considers how theories of political and social change adapt to how society itself has changed – the often controversial 'New Times' hypothesis.

Screenshot of the archive, showing the collection of Marxism Today publications, with a blurb discussing the publication.
Screenshot of the archive, showing an article named 'And Not A Shot Fired' from Marxism Today.

A fresh, clear and lightweight design and a new technology stack bring the archive into the 21st century. The design centres the vibrant cover art across the collection and this new technology provides search tools that now allow organisers and researchers to explore the work in detail.

Screenshot of banm archive, showing archived covers of New University

We used:

Using PostgreSQL directly limited technical complexity of the site and the cost of hosting cost.

The source code of the archive is open source to allow other archives to build upon the work.