This chapter has two objectives. It is first of all about a certain kind of unintended archive or, let us say, a certain institution that I shall choose to think of as an archive, an institution that seems to me paradigmatic of all archives. It is paradigmatic because an analysis of its practices must rely upon the insights included by psychoanalysis, which, as Derrida insists, “aspires to be a general science of the archive, of everything that can happen to the economy of memory and to its substrates, traces, documents, in their supposedly psychical or technoprosthetic forms …” (Derrida 34). Not only is the unconscious an archive, but archives can be said to function like the unconscious. I hope this relationship between the one and the other will prove to be something more than a conceit.

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Keywords Communist Party, Special Collection, Front Organization, Fellow Traveler, American Film
Persistent URL
Faulkner, C. (2008). An archive of the (political) unconscious: Jean Renoir at the FBI. In Modernism on File: Writers, Artists, and the FBI, 1920-1950 (pp. 163–179). doi:10.1057/9780230610392