November 21, 2016
For American Library Association members, this past weekend was a firestorm of controversy around a series of press releases, retractions, and apologies having to do with the association’s posture toward the incoming Trump administration and the unshackled radically conservative 115th Congress. I want to avoid chronicling these events, but will refer you to two centerpieces of the weekend’s discussion, blog posts by Emily Drabinski and Sarah Houghton. If you haven’t read them yet, read them first so that I don’t have to spend time rehashing the events. I would add one thing to these statements though, which is to emphasize that the press releases came not from the ALA President, but from the ALA Washington Office, which is ALA’s lobbying arm and its site of relations with the government. These press releases were a statement of ALA’s intention to collaborate with the Trump administration and Congress to help them with some of their goals which ALA shares in common. The fact that they did not express any of ALA’s priorities that are in conflict with Trumpism was what enraged members. My personal reaction was disappointment and anxiety – anxiety that ALA will go down in history as collaborating with a fascist government rather than opposing it in any way. And my impression of the press releases was that they were driven by fear – fear, perhaps, that the Washington Office has to show it is willing to cooperate if it is to have any hope of preserving the LSTA and the IMLS. (The Library Services and Technology Act and the Institute of Museum and Library Services are the two major sources of Federal funding for libraries and have to be periodically renewed by Congress, so they are the main focus of the Washington Office’s activities as lobbyists.)
It is important to understand that the Washington Office operates with a lot of independence from ALA. ALA President Julie Todaro was quoted in their press releases with statements that reflect their cooperative and supportive attitude toward the Trump administration, but if you know about how press releases are produced you know that you can’t assume she came up with those words herself or that they represent her own personal views. Her role as ALA’s spokesperson is necessarily an impersonal role. So I don’t believe it is appropriate to put the heat on President Todaro as though the press releases represent her views. However, I consider her apology for the Friday’s retracted press release to be a bit of a misdirection, because in apologizing she was tacitly taking responsibility for it. In taking responsibility for it she deflected attention from the fact that the press release was a statement by the Washington Office with the government as its primary intended audience.
This morning, President Todaro issued a statement that was intended to cool off the weekend’s firestorm. In it, she reassures members that ALA stands for all things good, just like we want it to. It is important to keep in mind the fact that it does not retract last Tuesday’s press release, which is still sitting on the website as the Washington Office’s official statement of its posture toward the Trump administration. That makes it a misdirection. I want to try to put the focus where it belongs, on the Washington Office. So enough about Julie Todaro.
A few words about the Washington Office, because people should understand its role and its relation to the rest of ALA. ALA of course is an odd beast, an organization of 60 thousand members, a governance structure that is member-based, and lots and lots of employees, who have their own governance structure and call the shots in many ways. So there is tension between member governance and executive governance. Washington Office staff are employees of ALA, and they operate with a lot of independence, owing in part to the fact that other people can only understand their work with Congress and government offices so well. (The fact that their website has its own domain name for staff email addresses underscores their independence.) It is a rather arcane business, inside-the-beltway politics. But officially, the Washington Office is not supposed to set its own policies. It’s policies are supposed to be set by ALA’s Committee on Legislation, which is composed of ALA members and reports to ALA Council, which is ALA’s main governing body and is elected by membership. So through a supposedly democratic process, the membership, you and I, are supposed to determine the policies of the Washington Office, through the Committee on Legislation. In reality, it works that way only to a minimal extent (although arguably the potential exists for members to exert more control, which is the reason I am posting this). I served a term on ALA Council, and used to attend Council sessions for several years prior to that, and I can tell you that Council seldom if ever directed the Committee on Legislation in terms of what the Washington Office policies toward government would be. There were occasions when Council would make a political statement on an important issue through the resolution process, with instructions for the Washington Office to relay this message to Congress. This can be very significant, as it was with ALA’s statement against the USA PATRIOT Act. But more often than not, when ALA Councilors with connections to SRRT (ALA’s Social Responsibilities Round Table) made an effort to get a politically oriented resolution passed, the Committee on Legislation would push back, saying, “The Washington Office says this would make their work with Congress more difficult in terms of getting LSTA funding.” A valid point with some degree of truth that we can’t know without being a lobbyist ourselves, but two points come to mind in response. First, there are plenty of examples of precedents for taking a strong stand politically where no negative impact on LSTA funding was felt, for example, the Resolution on the USA PATRIOT Act. ALA took a risk, against the general guidance of the Washington Office that it does not pay to ruffle feathers, and the result was a statement that members are still proud of. And LSTA funding survived. Second, it is worth highlighting that the COL’s role on Council has primarily been to relay policy advice from the Washington Office, a staff organization, to Council, which is supposed to be the body that sets its policy. This is a reversal of the way the relationship is formally designed. (If you want to do some reading about the history of attempts to get ALA Council to make political statements and the politics surrounding those efforts, I highly recommend Elaine Harger’s book, Which Side Are You On: Seven Social Responsibilities Debates in American Librarianship, 1990-2015, published by McFarland earlier this year.)
So it is in the context of these relationships that you should read the press releases.
(Parenthetically, I do have a couple of questions about these press releases that maybe someone can answer in the comments. I wonder why last Tuesday’s press release didn’t attract any attention, and why it was not acknowledged by Todaro in her apology for Friday’s press release, which was practically identical to it. For that matter, why were there two nearly identical press releases in the first place? Why was Friday’s press release released at all?)
To reiterate, the Washington Office press release from last Tuesday still stands and still has to be taken as their official position on how they will relate to the incoming presidential administration and Congress, and to that extent it remains extremely disappointing and remains a problem that we have to deal with. We should shift the focus away from questions of the way the press releases were worded, and we should be careful to understand that a message from the ALA President about what the association stands for has no impact, in itself, on the Washington Office.
What we should do is this. We should communicate, through Council, that the Committee on Legislation has an important task – to review the overall policies of the Washington Office to ensure that those policies are well-aligned with the priorities of the association, as expressed in statement’s like President Todaro’s statement from this morning. And we should ask for a retraction of Tuesday’s press release and the crafting of a new one that puts ALA’s positive priorities front and center, as goals of its lobbying efforts. Statements of how ALA wants to cooperate with a few of the Trump administration’s goals can be secondary. (There are other associations to look to as examples. Lisa Hinchliffe brought this statement from the National Association of Social Workers to my attention as an exemplar we should look to, and also pointed out a similar situation that the American Institute of Architects are dealing with.)
It is also important to keep in mind through all of this that the context of the Washington Office’s work is changing radically. It is changing to the extent that what they have learned about lobbying in previous sessions of Congress may no longer be valid. Maximizing funding through LSTA and the IMLS may no longer be a concern if the LSTA and IMLS don’t exist anymore (and there is a very good chance that they will go away completely, as the 115th Congress promises to be an orgy of destruction). That might make it paradoxically easier for them to take a strong stand against the Trump administration and Republicans in Congress, or at least give them less of a reason to try to block political statements by Council. We don’t know what will happen yet, but we do know that Republicans in Congress have educational institutions in their crosshairs and they have expressed every intention to cut government activities radically. I do not envy Washington Office staff in this situation, and I feel for them. I wish I had a better understanding of how they do what they do, and how they look at all of this. Judging from the tone of the press releases from last week though, it is pretty evident that they are feeling afraid. I hope we can give them a sense of strength in having the association behind them, and that knowing we are behind them they can craft a stronger statement. But in offering them strength, we should also be assertive about the need for a new statement from the Washington Office, laying out ALA’s values and letting the contrast between those values and the Trump administration speak for itself.
Regarding the argument we are beginning to hear that ALA should indeed cooperate with the Trump administration where possible, if it means being better able to achieve some of our goals. I do not dispute this, but it shouldn’t be the sole message of ALA’s statement of its position with respect to the new government. The Washington Office should make it clear at the same time what ALA stands for. Personally, I don’t think we need to say that “ALA refuses to cooperate with the Trump administration and repudiates its fascist ideology,” but we can say what we stand for, and we can register what we are concerned about specifically, before mentioning possible areas of collaboration.
I am terrible at concluding blog posts, so I will just repeat my central point. Julie Todaro’s inspiring statement from this morning has no effect on Washington Office policy, and it is Washington Office policy that their press releases from last week have revealed to us and that we should be concerned about. And there are ways that we can influence that policy. To that end, I have to share Diedre Conklin’s wonderful list of relevant contact information. Use it to write your letters.
November 19, 2016
And this is the press release that was taken down, retrieved from a Google cache:
For Immediate Release
ALA Washington Office
WASHINGTON, DC — Today the American Library Association (ALA) released three briefs highlighting how libraries can advance specific policy priorities of the incoming Trump administration in the areas of entrepreneurship, services to veterans and broadband adoption and use.
“ALA is dedicated to helping all our nation’s elected leaders identify solutions to the challenges our country faces,” ALA President Julie Todaro said. “The briefs released today demonstrate the diverse range of programs and services provided by our nation’s 120,000 libraries, which together constitute a national infrastructure that can address some of the challenges identified by President-elect Trump.
“Libraries are hubs of entrepreneurship and small business development,” she continued. “We help veterans and others access valuable benefits and services they are eligible for. And libraries spur broadband adoption by increasing awareness and confidence in using online resources and services.”
Each paper features numerous snapshots of programs around the country illustrating libraries’ contributions to vibrant communities, as well as “takeaway” points for decision-makers:
One Small Business at a Time: Building Entrepreneurial Opportunity in America’s Communities (PDF)
Snapshot: A Maryland ice cream entrepreneur used library resources to write an award-winning business plan that led to $50,000 in seed money and the launch of her shop.
Takeaway: Leverage libraries in new policy initiatives to grow entrepreneurship and small businesses.
Libraries Help and Honor Our Veterans: Employment, Education and Community Connection (PDF)
Snapshot: A California veteran said the referral he received at the library led to him receiving medical benefits and back pay he was unaware he earned.
Takeaway: Libraries represent a proactive, cost-effective solution for extending outreach and services to veterans and their families.
America’s Libraries: Powering Broadband Access, Adoption and Use (PDF)
Snapshot: Families in public housing with school-aged children receive digital literacy training and access to online homework resources and other digital services at libraries.
Takeaway: Libraries bring a wealth of resources and expertise to partnerships like ConnectHome with the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development
Release of the snapshots coincides with a major policy event (Here Comes Everybody) on the same day held jointly by ALA and the Internet Association, which represents America’s leading internet companies and their global community of users. Focused on how to harness the internet and U.S. libraries to increase economic opportunity for all, the event features speakers from Yelp, Google and the two associations, followed by a policy hackathon.
“Virtually every community across the country is served by libraries,” said Todaro. “Given adequate resources and support, we can expand the scope and reach of the resources we offer.”
And here is the press release from a few days earlier, which is still (at this date) still on the ala website: http://libraryjuicepress.com/blog/?p=5418. As you can see, it’s not much different.
ALA’s Washington Office press release from yesterday has already been removed from the web – That’s the one that sane people found horribly craven for its eagerness in declaring ALA wants to collaborate with Trump’s government. An earlier press release that says essentially the same thing, also from the ALA Washington Office, is still on the web. Since it is logical to expect that it might also end up getting taken down, here it is for posterity, followed by a comment from me:
For Immediate Release
ALA Washington Office
WASHINGTON, DC — The American Library Association offers its expertise and resources to the incoming administration and the new and returning members of Congress from all parties elected on Nov. 8.
“The American Library Association is dedicated to helping all our nation’s elected leaders identify solutions to the challenges our country faces,” ALA President Julie Todaro said. “We are ready to work with President-elect Trump, his transition team, incoming administration and members of Congress to bring more economic opportunity to all Americans and advance other goals we have in common.”
Libraries themselves – 120,000 strong and embedded in the largest urban centers, small farming communities and school and university campuses – make up a robust national infrastructure immediately available to advance several policy priorities identified by the President-elect. As hubs of learning, literacy, job skills development and access to public services in virtually every community across the country, our nation’s libraries are ready and able now to expand the nationwide reach of these valuable services.
Some of these services are described in detail in a series of papers being released this week by ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy, including:
* One Small Business at a Time: Building Entrepreneurial Opportunity in America’s Communities
* America’s Libraries: Powering Broadband Adoption, Access and use
* Libraries Help and Honor Our Veterans: Employment, Education and Community Connection
We trust that these resources will assist the new administration and Congress in addressing several areas of national interest announced on the website for the White House Transition Team, specifically in:
Infrastructure: As many as 33 percent of American households lack home broadband connections. Libraries use broadband technologies to help citizens, especially in the most disadvantaged and rural areas, improve their education, find a job and start a business. Investments and public policies are needed to advance the deployment of widespread high-speed broadband capabilities to libraries and other community anchor institutions, as well as to the general population.
Education: Libraries provide opportunities for digital and traditional literacy training. From hosting technology camps to teaching coding skills to offering 3D printers, libraries foster the kind of computational thinking necessary for success in today’s world. Ensuring funding for federal block grants to states for the work of libraries will enable local governments to determine how to best meet the greatest needs in their own communities and make wise investments in education.
Serving veterans: Libraries help address many of the challenges experienced by members of the military when they return to civilian life. Libraries help veterans (and their families) search for a job, improve and translate job skills to the civilian context and navigate bureaucracies to receive the benefits to which they are entitled. Further collaboration with the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense will allow libraries to efficiently address the issues facing our returning veterans.
“Through new and strengthened collaborations, libraries are well-positioned to serve as an ever-stronger and flexible resource to advance critical national goals,” continued Todaro. “The U.S. library community looks forward to strengthening our partnerships with federal agencies, the new administration and other key stakeholders at all levels of government.”
That’s the press release. A few brief comments of my own for now. I hope to take this up soon, perhaps with an interview with someone on the ALA Committee on Legislation, which is charged with directing the Washington Office in matters of policy. First, it seems obvious that the “goals in common” that ALA shares with a Trump administration are vastly overshadowed by incompatibilities. To name two: Libraries are committed to inclusivity, and Trump and his team believe that the real America is white, male, heterosexual, and Christian. Second, libraries are committed to an enlightenment idea of intellectual freedom, understood as a process where the play of ideas in rational discourse leads to a democratic society governed by a collective wisdom and honest efforts toward truth, while Trump and his supporters have no respect for facts and view the public sphere as an arena where only fools observe the norms of adherence to reason and where might is right. Honest observers recognize that we are dealing with fascists, and we should be vocal in highlighting these incompatibilities, rather than for scurrying to find little areas where we can collaborate. I do not want my association to go down in history as collaborating with a fascist regime, not when we have such strong precedents for standing up to power. I think this issue is going to be front and center for ALA members for the next four years at least. I am hopeful that the Washington Office can be directed to change course and can be assigned a more oppositional stance. I think the response from members will be strong enough to do that.
And recovered now: the press release that was taken down: http://libraryjuicepress.com/blog/?p=5421
And incidentally, this press release, the earlier one that is still up, is open for comments from ALA members on the ALA website.
November 17, 2016
Martyn Wade email@example.com via infoserv.inist.fr
You may recall that IFLA has made a number of statements regarding Natalya Sharina – a Russian Librarian who is accused of inciting hatred by having “extremist” books on the shelves of the Library of Ukrainian Literature in Moscow. Donna Scheeder, IFLA President, has also written to the Russian authorities expressing our concerns. (See http://www.ifla.org/publications/node/10844, http://www.ifla.org/node/10488, http://www.ifla.org/node/9992) After being held under house arrest for over a year her trial has now commenced. (See this report on the BBC News website for more information: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-37852934)
Amnesty International have also raised concerns over the case against Natalya Sharina, calling her a prisoner of conscience. They are asking for supporters to write appeals to the Russian Prosecutor General and Chairman of the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation. For more information see the Amnesty website at https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/eur46/2900/2015/en/
IFLA remain concerned over the unnecessary and disproportionate treatment of Natalya and continue to be in touch with her lawyer and to monitor the situation.
Chair, IFLA FAIFE
November 14, 2016
Message from Al Kagan to the SRRTAC-L list:
We are excited to announce that Bill McKibben will be a featured speaker at ALA Annual 2017!
Bill McKibben is an author, environmentalist, and activist. His books have been published worldwide in over 20 languages. In 2014, he was awarded the Right Livelihood Prize, which is sometimes called the “alternative Nobel.” The same year he was recognized by biologists who named a new species of woodland gnat (Megophthalmidia mckibbeni) in his honor. McKibben is co-founder and Senior Advisor at 350.org, an international, grassroots climate movement that works in 188 countries around the globe to organize rallies and spearhead resistance to the Keystone Pipeline. This organization is also credited with beginning the fossil fuel divestment movement.
McKibben suggests that we conceptualize climate change as a threat on the order of World War III and respond accordingly. With this mindset we can make societal shifts similar to those experienced in the 1940’s wartime era and move to renewable energy, energy efficiency, and energy storage.
There is urgency to his message as climate change is happening more quickly than scientists anticipated. McKibben argues that the status quo and doubt are luxuries we cannot afford. The nonviolent war that McKibben proposes will save lives and has the potential to produce millions of jobs.
Sponsored by: ALA’s Social Responsibilities Round Table and Sustainability Round Table as well as the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association and the American Indian Library Association
Date, time, and location of McKibben’s featured address at ALA annual in Chicago are forthcoming.
CFP: Call for Proposals
CAPAL17: Foundations & Futures: Critical Reflections on the Pasts, Presents, and Possibilities of Academic Librarianship
CAPAL/ACBAP Annual Meeting – May 30 – June 1, 2017
Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences 2017
The Canadian Association of Professional Academic Librarians (CAPAL) invites you to participate in its annual conference, to be held as part of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, which lies in the territory of the Haudenosaunee and the Mississaugas of the New Credit River. This conference offers librarians and allied professionals across all disciplines an alternative space to share research and scholarship, challenge current thinking about professional issues, and forge new relationships.
In keeping with the Congress 2017 theme, From Far and Wide: The Next 150, our focus is CAPAL17: Foundations & Futures: Critical Reflections on the Pasts, Presents, and Possibilities of Academic Librarianship.
This conference provides an opportunity for the academic library community to critically examine and discuss together the ways in which our profession is influenced by its social, political, and economic environments. By considering academic librarianship within its historical contexts, its presents, and its possible futures, and by situating it within evolving cultural frameworks and structures of power, we can better understand the ways in which academic librarianship may reflect, reinforce, or challenge these contexts both positively and negatively.
How can “recalling, retelling, and scrutinizing” our stories help us to understand the present and envision the future of academic librarianship? What are the logics and practices that constitute and reconstitute our profession, and inform our assumptions and approaches?
This conference engages with current discussions surrounding what many consider to be a significant juncture in academic librarianship: the turn towards critically examining the contexts and roots of our profession. How for instance, do we as a profession integrate understanding of the pasts and presents of broader social contexts and engage meaningfully in these necessary conversations?
Papers presented might relate to aspects of the following themes (though they need not be limited to them):
– Critical reflections on librarian identity, agency, and representation (in areas such as gender, sexuality, race, decolonization/indigenization, professionalism, stereotypes)
– Critical reflections on core values: intellectual and academic freedom, access to information, privacy of information, preservation and curation, professionalism, etc.
– Bringing the oppositional practices of broader social mobilization around movements (e.g., Black Lives Matter, Idle No More, transgender rights, and others) to bear on our work
– Critical librarianship in practice: collections development and management, information literacy, reference services, and other areas of service (e.g., cultural bias in knowledge organization; absent histories, etc.)
– Critical reflections on career paths (e.g., early-career professionals, new and emerging roles, specializations, management, leadership, etc.)
– Unpacking of language, rhetoric, and discourse that influence and constitute our profession and services (e.g., buzzwords, military or business speak, oppositional discourses of past/future, print/digital, progressive/obsolete, etc.)
– Modes of knowledge creation, research dissemination, and engagement (e.g., oral traditions, co-creation, copyright, open access, and other forms of scholarly communication, etc.)
– Critical review of current educational requirements and training for academic librarians
The Program Committee invites proposals for individual papers as well as proposals for panel submissions of three papers. Proposed papers must be original and not have been published elsewhere.
Individual papers are typically 20 minutes in length. For individual papers, please submit an abstract of no more than 400 words and a presentation title, with a brief biographical statement and your contact information.
For complete panels, please submit a panel abstract of no more than 400 words as well as a list of all participants and brief biographical statements, and a separate abstract of no more than 400 words for each presenter. Please identify and provide participants’ contact information for the panel organizer.
Please feel free to contact the Program Committee to discuss a topic for a paper, panel, or other session format. Proposals should be emailed as an attachment as a .doc or .docx file, using the following filename conventions: Lastname_Keywordoftopic.docx
Proposals and questions should be directed to the Program Chair, Courtney Waugh at firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for Proposals is: the 23rd of December, 2016
Further information about the conference, as well as Congress 2017 more broadly, will be available soon.
November 8, 2016
The School of Library and Information Science, along with the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, is offering a study-abroad opportunity in CUBA!
If you are interested in exploring new cultures, and particularly learning more about young people (“Generation Z”) and how they consume culture in another country, this class is for you.
This four-week open learning course is scheduled for May 15-June 10, 2017 — online for three weeks, with one week of travel in Cuba (May 29-June 3, 2017).
YOU ARE INVITED to attend an information session for this course on Thursday, Nov. 10, at 6 p.m. in Franklin Hall, room 340, at Kent State University. If you are not in the Kent, Ohio, area you can participate in the session remotely:
JOIN WEBEX MEETING
Meeting number: 715 199 653
JOIN BY PHONE
1-650-479-3208 Call-in toll number (US/Canada)
Access code: 715 199 653
The session will be recorded and later posted to this site: https://www.kent.edu/ccistudyabroad/cuba. A course overview and travel itinerary are located on that page as well.
Course description: “The Real World” Cuba: Examining Gen Z Pop Culture Across Borders
Being a teen has clear implications across the globe. This course will examine how adolescence is defined transnationally, as well as young people’s relation to culture. What does “culture” mean to contemporary young adults living in the U.S. compared to those living in other countries? What is produced for this generation in each place? How do young people consume such culture? How do they interact with it? How do they produce, claim, and consume the culture they create for themselves? And subsequently, what can we learn about transnational cultural production, dissemination, and consumption for and by young people? This course will introduce students to Generation Z and the impact of culture on their lives, comparing the US and Cuba in these respects.
The trip to Cuba includes three cities (Havana, Cienfuegos, Trinidad) and a lot of Cuban culture. We’ll spend three days in Havana, immersed in Cuban pop culture with top Cuban artists from various art, film and music collectives and interact directly with Cuba’s Gen Z. From there we’ll travel to two of Cuba’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites which will show, among other things, “true masterpieces of human creative genius.”
For more information, including course objectives and a travel itinerary, visit https://www.kent.edu/ccistudyabroad/cuba.
This course is co-taught by SLIS Assistant Professor Marianne Martens, Ph.D. (for graduate students) and JMC lecturer Wendy Wardell (for undergraduates).
Marianne Martens, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor in Kent State University’s School of Library and Information Science (SLIS). Her research and teaching cover the interconnected fields of youth services librarianship and publishing, with a special focus on Digital Youth. She is the author of Publishers, Readers and Digital Engagement: Participatory Forums and Young Adult Publishing (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). Prior to her academic career, Martens worked in children’s publishing in New York. You can read more about her at mariannemartens.org.
Wendy Wardell, an Instructor in JMC’s Advertising sequence, has more than 14 years of B2C experience in the advertising industry. She has worked for local, national and international ad agencies including Ogilvy, Malone Advertising, WB Doner and Liggett-Stashower. She has experience in planning, directing and executing programming designed to drive sales, and she has a proven track record of increasing consumer brand loyalty. She has implemented product launches for ZYRTEC and HUGGIES and has also managed integrated communications plans for global consumer brands including Glade, Ziploc, Windex, BENADRYL and TYLENOL.
All the best,
Marketing Communications and Public Relations Specialist
School of Library and Information Science
Kent State University
I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library. — Jorge Luis Borges
October 21, 2016
Call for Proposals
Data & Ethics
Information Ethics Roundtable 2017
Proposals Due: January 2, 2017
Notification of Acceptance: January 30, 2017
In our knowledge society, our networked selves continually create and are created through data. In light of the ubiquity of data in the contemporary world, the ethical creation, dissemination, use, and storage of data continues to be an area of concern. The focus of the 2017 roundtable will be on all aspects of data (writ large) and ethics.
The Information Ethics Roundtable is a yearly conference which brings together researchers from disciplines such as philosophy, information science, communications, public administration, anthropology and law to discuss ethical issues such as information privacy, intellectual property, intellectual freedom, and censorship.
Suggested areas of inquiry include, but are not limited to:
• The primacy of data over the individual
• Reinforcement of personal preferences through surveillance of personal data
• Responsibilities and ethical obligations for data curation and sharing
• Privacy and surveillance (including the NSA disclosures)
• “Big Data” research and the ethical treatment of human subjects
• Moral implications of the Quantified Self
• Ethics in data science instruction/pedagogy
• Social justice and data collection
We invite both individual and group proposals:
(1) For individual paper proposals, please submit a 500-word abstract of your paper.
(2) For panel, fishbowl, or group proposals, please identify participants with a 100-250 word biography and submit a 1500 word abstract of your topic and treatment.
Proposals should be sent to email@example.com.
Deadline for Proposals: January 2nd, 2017
Notification of Acceptance: Monday, January 30, 2017
Conference Dates: April 21-22, 2016
Conference Organizing Committee:
Emily J.M. Knox, Assistant Professor, University of Illinois
Emily Lawrence, Doctoral Student, University of Illinois
Shannon M. Oltmann, Assistant Professor, University of Kentucky
Allen Renear, Dean and Professor, University of Illinois
School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign
Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities
University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Department of Philosophy, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Illinois Informatics Institute
October 14, 2016
Library Juice Press and Library Juice Academy are looking for someone, or maybe a couple of people, to help us out with our presence in the exhibits hall during ALA Midwinter in Atlanta, January 20th to 23rd. Compensation is $20/hr, with likely 20 hours of work over the four days (flexible). Transportation to Atlanta and lodging are your responsibility. The primary responsibility is to talk to attendees of the conference about our books and online classes. The main qualification is familiarity with our work. Please send a cover letter and resume to Rory Litwin, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
October 11, 2016
Call for Papers
Urban Library Journal (ULJ) is an open access, double-blind peer-reviewed journal of research that addresses all aspects of urban libraries and librarianship.
Urban Library Journal invites submissions in broad areas such as public higher education, urban studies, multiculturalism, library and educational services to immigrants, preservation of public higher education, and universal access to World Wide Web resources. We welcome articles that focus on all forms of librarianship in an urban setting, whether that setting is an academic, research, public, school, or special library.
Possible topics may include, but are not limited to:
– Reference and instruction in diverse, multicultural urban settings
– Radical librarianship, social justice issues, and/or informed agitation
– Intentional design / “library as space” in an urban setting
– Physical and/or virtual accessibility issues
– Open education resources in urban systems
– Innovative collaboration between academic departments, other branches, or community partnerships
Completed manuscript length should fall between 2,500 and 5,000 words. Full author guidelines can be found on the ULJ website: http://academicworks.cuny.edu/ulj/author_guidelines.html
The submission period is open now and closes on January 1st, 2017.
For more information about ULJ and to see the latest issue: http://academicworks.cuny.edu/ulj.
Tonight’s #critlib discussion is about the “history of critical librarianship.” The moderators give some suggested readings and additional ones for further exploration, a couple of which I would not have thought of. There is a lot out there that relates to the history of critical librarianship. I’ve just gone over to my collection and pulled out a few things I want to add to the list of books for “further exploration.” First I’ll copy the ones the moderators suggest, so that they will be stick with my suggestions here:
Morrone, M., & Friedman, L. (2009). Radical reference : socially responsible librarianship collaborating with community. The Reference Librarian, 50(4).
Harger, E. (2016). Which Side Are You On? : Seven Social Responsibility Debates in American Librarianship, 1990–2015. (especially the Introduction and chapter 1)
For further exploration:
Pettigrew, K., Fidel, R., & Bruce, H. (2001). Conceptual frameworks in information behaviour. Annual Review of Information Science and Technology, 35, 43–78.
Pettigrew, K., & McKechnie, L. (2001). The use of theory in information science research. Journal of the Association of Information Science and Technology, 52(1), 62–73.
Kagan, A. (2015). Progressive Library Organizations: A Worldwide History.
Samek, T. (2001). Intellectual Freedom and Social Responsibility in American Librarianship, 1967-1974.
Here are the readings I suggest in addition. These include studies of critical librarianship historically and memoirs and biographies of people involved in it, but mostly classic examples of critical writing in librarianship from the 60s, 70s, and 80s. They are in no particular order. It’s not an exhaustive list by any means, just a short list I compiled by going over to my bookshelves.
Bundy, M. L, & Stielow, F. J. (1987). Activism in American Librarianship, 1962-1973.
Schuman, P. G. (1976). Social Responsibilities and Libraries: A Library Journal/School Library Journal Selection.
Peattie, N. (1989). A Passage for Dissent: The Best of Sipapu, 1970-1988.
West, C. & Katz, E. (1972). Revolting Librarians.
Berman, S. (1971, 1993). Prejudices and Antipathies: A Tract of LC Subject Headings Concerning People.
Berman, S. & Danky, J. (1982/1983-2000/2001). Alternative Library Literature: A Biennial Anthology.
Horn, Z. (1995). Zoia! Memoirs of Zoia Horn, Battler for the People’s Right to Know.
Kister, K. F. (2002). Eric Moon: The Life and Library Times.
Progressive Librarian (1990-present).
October 1, 2016
October 1, 2016
Library Juice Press is happy to announce the winner of the Fourth Annual Library Juice Paper Contest. Lisa Sloniowski’s paper, titled, “Affective Labor, Resistance, and the Academic Librarian,” published in Library Trends, was judged by the award jury to be the best paper out of 19 submitted in this year’s contest. The award jury consisted of three members and evaluated papers in a blind process. The jury wrote,
“‘Affective Labor, Resistance and the Academic Librarian’ extends the traditional analysis of librarianship as a feminized profession by drawing on Marxist and Autonomist conceptions of labor to make an important and urgent argument for the role of affective labor in librarianship generally, and reference and liaison librarianship specifically. This immaterial, affective work is increasingly subject to post-Fordist metrics that devalue or disregard the emotional and intellectual subtleties underpinning the work of librarians; baked into the long conversations with students and faculty who may “leave [our] office[s] in tears” (647); or the nuance and care required to develop and curate an intellectually honest research collection. Underscoring the value of librarianship in the digital age and in the context of the neoliberal university we are reminded that we need be mindful of the decisions we make as we move forward as stewards of libraries and librarianship and offered potential modes of resistance.”
Ms. Sloniowski is Associate Librarian at York University in Toronto.
The award for honorable mention goes to Anne Gilliland and Michelle Caswell’s “Records and Their Imaginaries: Imagining the Impossible, Making Possible the Imagined,” published in Archival Science.
The Library Juice Paper Contest winner receives an award of $1000. The intention of this contest is to encourage and reward good work in the field of library and information studies, humanistically understood, through a monetary award and public recognition. Papers submitted may be pending publication, or published (formally or informally) in the year of the award. Any type of paper may be entered as long as it is not a report of an empirical study. Examples of accepted forms would be literature review essays, analytical essays, historical papers, and personal essays. The work may include some informal primary research, but may not essentially be the report of an empirical study.
The critera for judgment are:
– Clarity of writing
– Originality of thought
– Sincerity of effort at reaching something true
– Soundness of argumentation (where applicable)
– Relevance to our time and situation
Entries in next year’s award are due August 1st, 2017.
Library Juice Press is an imprint of Litwin Books, LLC specializing in theoretical and practical issues in librarianship from a critical perspective, for an audience of professional librarians and students of library science.
PO Box 188784, Sacramento, CA 95818
September 24, 2016
Litwin Books provides financial support to scholars in LIS and related fields for travel to conferences they attend, domestically or internationally. Travel grants are limited to $500 for domestic conferences and $1000 for travel to a conference outside the recipient’s home country. No more than one grant is available per recipient per year, and grants over the course of the year are limited to available funds.
Applications should include a CV, the accepted abstract for the presentation, or the paper itself if available, as well as any information about the conference that may be helpful. Evaluation will be based in part on the paper’s “fit” with the publishing program of Litwin Books and its associated imprints. Applications are evaluated by a panel of three judges.
Except in unusual circumstances, funds will be a reimbursement of travel and lodging expenses up to the award amount, based on documentation of the expense and evidence that you participated in the conference (nametag, program, tweets, etc.)
Applications may be sent to email@example.com by November 1st of each year. Recipients of the travel grant will be notified on December 1st.
We ask that you acknowledge the travel grant in your presentation and on your CV.
Natalie Baur, to travel from Mexico City to Portland, Oregon, as co-organizer of a one-day forum on community archives during the Society of American Archivists meeting in 2017. $1000
Jamila Ghaddar, to participate in a panel titled, “Archival interventions: Anti-violence and social justice work in community contexts,” at the Association for Information Science and Technology Annual Meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2016. $500
Nathaniel Moore, to present his paper, “Speaking Truth to Power: Archives, Community Engagement and Advocacy,” at the Northwest Archivist Annual Conference in Denver in 2016. $500
Jen LaBarbera, to present her paper, “History in the Making: How Archives and Activists Can Work Together,” at the Gender & Sexuality in Information Studies Colloquium in 2016. $500
Marika L. Cifor, to present her paper, “Blood, Sweat, and Hair: The Archival Potential of Queer and Trans Bodies,” at the Gender & Sexuality in Information Studies Colloquium in 2016. $500
Julie Winkelstein, to present her paper, “Safe in the Stacks: Public Libraries Serving LGBTQ Homeless Youth,” at the Public Library Association Annual Conference in 2016. $500
Nathaniel Enright, to present his paper, “The Austerity of Literacy: The Financialization of Information and the Politics of Debt,” at the Canadian Association of Professional Academic Librarians in 2015. $1000
Anna Wilson, to present her paper, “Comparing Indigenous Approaches to Autism with Western Approaches to Autism,” at the Canadian Association of Professional Academic Librarians in 2015. $500
September 20, 2016
CHICAGO – The ALA Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services (ODLOS)is launching Intersections, a new blog that highlights the everyday work of library and information science workers as they advocate for equity and inclusion as they relate to diversity, literacy and access among membership, the field of librarianship and the communities they serve.
The blog invites submissions from across the library profession that feature support for those from historically and disadvantaged racial and ethnic groups; those who experience socioeconomic barriers, people experiencing hunger, homelessness and poverty; immigrants, refugees and new Americans; those discriminated against based on nationality or language; those who are geographically isolated; those experiencing barriers in regards to access to literacy; and new and non-readers.
“We envision Intersections to be a vibrant and thriving place for our members to share their stories,” said ODLOS Director Jody Gray. “We’ll also be sharing exciting news from ODLOS and our many constituencies, including information on conferences, initiatives, grants, and much more.”
For more information, including submission information, please visit www.ala.org/intersections.
The ALA Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services supports library and information science workers in creating safe, responsible, and all-inclusive spaces that serve and represent the entire community. To accomplish this, we decenter power and privilege by facilitating conversations around access and identity as they impact the profession and those we serve. We use a social justice framework to inform library and information science workers’ development of resources. We strive to create an association culture where these concerns are incorporated into everybody’s everyday work.
John L. Amundsen, MLIS
Program Officer, Outreach and Communications
Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services
American Library Association
50 East Huron Street
Chicago, IL 60611
T 312.280.2140 | F 312.280.3256
firstname.lastname@example.org | www.ala.org/diversity
September 16, 2016
Message from Michael Matthews, Progressive Librarian Book Review Editor:
Dear Progressive Library Workers:
Do you like balmy summer late afternoons, listening to the crickets chirp as you paddle a canoe along a mountain stream while watching a mother moose and her adorable calf drink clear, unpolluted water as an eagle swoops down, clutching a PCB-free trout in in its talons?
Because if you do, I would stop reading this message now and book your vacation plans for Never-Never Land. I’m looking for book reviewers for Progressive Librarian #46 as well as for recently published titles in the following fields of interest:
LGBT, queer, and feminist perspectives on library work
Late (neoliberal) capitalism and the politics of information
Libraries, neoliberal ideology, and social reproduction
Poverty, homelessness, and the role of libraries (in either mitigating the circumstances of poverty or exacerbating them)
Libraries, information technology, and the proletarianization of library workers
Climate change, the Anthropocene, and the challenge for libraries in the Age of the (not-so-immediate) Sixth Extinction
Library management discourse, the future of libraries, and performativity
Scholarly communication and the role of libraries in supporting the supremacy of publishers—or their possible role in subverting them
And…as Ron Popeil would say, “much, much more!” If you can find a book that fits these criteria or might even share a shaded portion of the circle within a Venn diagram, then please forward it to my attention. And if you would like to review such a book (or another book, which I may forward to your attention) then so much the better!
We will also entertain reviews of books (or other works) that cleverly torpedo the pretensions of our profession’s self-appointed “thought leaders”, and pitilessly reduce their arguments to a burning pile of wreckage—with eloquence, wit, and substantive scholarship, of course.
Your friendly neighborhood book editor, social raconteur, and mad gadabout,
Head of Serials & Media/
Associate Professor of Library Science
Northwestern State University Libraries
Natchitoches, Louisiana 71497