The role and the associated practices of the archivist are attuned to notions of facilitation. Archivists facilitate people's engagement with the historical record by providing access to records in context: a context instantiated through archival classification, arrangement, and description. In the second of a two-part article, the author draws from the archival literature to present a historical overview of the factors that contributed to evolving notions of archival classification and arrangement from the 1960s to today. A review of the literature of this time frame provides its own context for understanding how, why, and through whose influence competing understandings and implementations of core classification ideas persist. In the process, the author highlights classification as a historically situated interpretive act, drawing attention to the implications of various disciplinary influences and analytical perspectives on the present status and future conception of, and possibilities for, the American archival profession.

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