These concluding reflections assess how the contributors to this special issue intervene in key assumptions that shape the current field of archival studies. As the “archival turn” gains ground, forms of Euro- and state-centrism reappear in scholarship otherwise innovative in its attention to the textual remnants of the past. Here, instead, we explore the methodological stakes involved in defining both the “archive” and the historical power brokers who created and preserved a documentary record in pursuit of their varied social, cultural, economic, and political projects. The essay points to the resurgence of culturalist and civilisational indices for comparative archivistics, and follows the arguments collected in this issue to assert by contrast the often uneven and uneasy regional, administrative, and procedural definitions at work within preserved records. Identifying “mobility” as both a methodological tactic and a historical process, this conclusion presents a fluid rather than fixed textual landscape and presents an alternative frame for investigating preservationist practices.