Women’s archival representation in rhetoric and writing studies has been flattened by the incremental circulation of their texts, projecting significant gaps in public canons from this era. Sometimes these gaps are caused by digitized university collections that represent too closely the interests of their donors. At other times, women faculty held contingent or untenured positions, making it harder to locate them in traditional venues such as conference programs, published textbooks, or faculty course lists. In response, LWP moves feminist historical inquiry towards a model of locatability: a flexible ecology that describes how histories get written as a result of historians’ interventions with them.
The question of how we chart feminist historiography seems fundamentally a question of how we chart the migration of intellectual capital, and in turn how we believe or assume this capital can shift or be moved. LWP joins several other digital projects that emphasize movement as a key historical methodology, although its movement paradigms are not guided exclusively by the circulation patterns of objects, but by references or ephemera. Specifically, LWP strives to present a migration paradigm that is guided by unprocessed, partially processed, or digitally obscure sources, rather than by the systematic circulation of published texts. In its final form, LWP will act as a user-contributed tool for preserving, analyzing, visualizing and making this information accessible, leaving greater possibilities up to the interpretation of its users.