December 30, 2008

LJP Series on Critical Multiculturalism and Librarianship

Series on Critical Multiculturalism and Librarianship

Isabel Espinal, Series Editor

Library Juice Press seeks book proposals and manuscripts for a new series, Critical Multiculturalism and Librarianship, edited by Isabel Espinal. This series aims to publish works from practical, theoretical and personal perspectives that critically engage issues of cultural and racial diversity, and cultural and racial equity, in library and information services.

We seek writings such as:

  • Books that offer tools and practical strategies for promoting cultural and racial equity in library services and personnel, including the areas of technology, management, funding, collections, outreach, literacy, and information and reader services to individuals and communities.

  • Histories and biographies of librarians, activists, and organizations that made strides in promoting cultural diversity or combating racism in library practices.
  • Analyses and explorations of library services to particular cultural groups and subgroups (e.g. African American, African American youth, Latina/o, Chicana/o, Asian American, Chinese American, Indigenous, etc. ). Books that discuss culturally oppressed groups in countries other than the United States are also welcome.
  • Analyses and explorations of racism in librarianship, both historical and current.
  • Books that illustrate how libraries and librarians work to eradicate and alleviate the problems caused by cultural and racial oppression in the greater society. Books that show how libraries and librarians partner with other organizations and professions to achieve these goals.
  • Discussions of multiculturalism in librarianship as it relates to: intellectual freedom, information access, institutional racism, gender inequities, sexuality, whiteness and white privilege, antiracism, materialist critiques, power analyses, social justice, transnationalism, international and intercultural social movements, and the future of library and information services.

Please submit queries, proposals, and manuscripts to Isabel Espinal,

December 27, 2008

Book of note: technological censorship

Edited Clean Version: Technology and the Culture of Control, by Raiford Guins.

This new book from University of Minnesota Press is about how media technologies are being built for consumers with features that allow them to do their own censorship. The author is talking about “TVs equipped with V-chips, Internet filters, editing DVD players, clean-version CDs and MP3s, and game consoles with parental control features.” (From the web page describing the book.)

Rather interesting from an IF point of view. I wonder if Guins deals with questions concerning the way the choices people make tend to be conditioned by the options that consumer society presents them with…

December 26, 2008

Melvil Dewey, RIP

Melvil Dewey died this day in 1931…

December 24, 2008

The Green Library Movement

Monika Antonelli has an important article in the new Electronic Green Journal called The Green Library Movement: An Overview and Beyond. Here is the abstract:

The creation of green libraries is approaching a tipping point, generating a Green Library Movement, which is comprised of librarians, libraries, cities, towns, college and university campuses committed to greening libraries and reducing their environmental impact. Constructing a green library building using a performance standard like LEED is a way some libraries are choosing to become green and sustainable. Environmental challenges like energy depletion and climate change will influence the type of information resources and programs libraries will provide to their communities.

Monika is an important pioneer who is leading the way to make libraries a core part of a more sustainable society, dovetailing the idea of libraries with emerging ideas from the permaculture movement. I’m glad to see this article and look forward to more. (Can you tell I’m hoping she’ll do a book with LJP?).

December 23, 2008

More on Black Wednesday has also published an article about Black Wednesday and the dire straits that the publishing industry is in: Read It and Weep, by Jason Book. (Click past the ad in the upper right of the page to get to the article.)

The end of days is here for the publishing industry — or it sure seems like it. On Dec. 3, now known as “Black Wednesday,” several major American publishers were dramatically downsized, leaving many celebrated editors and their colleagues jobless. The bad news stretches from the unemployment line to bookstores to literature itself.

December 22, 2008

Banned Librarian

Here’s a new blog worth noting: Amy Sonie’s Banned Librarian. Always happy to see a new Left librarian blog. Looks good indeed – substantial and interesting…

This is from the About page:

Amy Sonnie is the “banned librarian.” In 2002 the Texas Youth Commission banned Amy’s young adult anthology, Revolutionary Voices (Alyson, 2000), a collection of creative writing and art by queer youth. Proud to produce dangerous material, Amy continued to piss off all the right people as Associate Director of the Center for Media Justice from 2001-2007. Her second book (forthcoming from Melville House, 2010) traces the untold history of poor white activists allied with the Black Panther Party and Young Lords in the 1960s. Amy is a librarian living in Oakland, CA.

The banned librarian blog is for librarians who support social justice and activists who love their libraries.

December 21, 2008

Thanks are due…

Often when I send out business correspondence, I feel the necessity to use the first person plural to refer to Library Juice Press and Litwin Books, even though I have no employees, strictly speaking, simply because it is what people expect from a business entity. But when I reflect on all the people who have helped me publish the ten books I have published and the half dozen more that are near publication, I realize that saying “we” is actually a lot more honest than saying “I.” In addition to authors, I have had help from a lot of people, doing graphic design, editing, typing, marketing, indexing, web work, layout, writing prefaces and forewords, and other things – not to mention giving me indispensable advice and helping me get deals done. Now that I’m approaching the end of year three I’d like to list a bunch of people whom I wish to thank publicly for their assistance, whether it was a big help or a small help. Thanks to all of you:

Byron Anderson
Issa Asgarally
David Bade
Lisa Bayer
Jacques Bayle-Ottenheim
Marie Benoit
Cole Benson
Nicole Bretall
Jane Brodsky Fitzpatrick
Denise Carlson
Brooke Chaffee
Ed D’Angelo
Tony Dierkins
Kathleen de la Peña McCook
Georgie Donovan
Shiraz Durrani
Erik Estep
Robbie Franklin
Tim Gerlach
Michael Gorman
Heather Harrison
Nancy Kranich
Alison Lewis
Michelle Lyman Pierson
Topher McCulloch
Carissa Mikkelsen
Ellen and Tony Moore
Paul Nelson
Sarah Nichols
Jacki Nilssen
Wendy Prellwitz
Sarah Rudek
Cheryl Read
Sue Searing
Suzanne Stauffer
Sarah Sussman
Martin Wallace
Brett Wilson

Black Wednesday and On…

If you’re interested in changes that the publishing industry has been seeing recently, you’ll want to read Tom Engelhardt’s piece in the current issue of The Nation, titled “Reading in an Age of Depression.” His insider’s insight is chilling, in that things are worse than we thought. In his view, however, small independent publishers have an advantage….

December 19, 2008

The Izzy Award – Call for Nominations

From the site:

The Izzy Award is named after legendary maverick journalist I. F. Stone, who launched I. F. Stone Weekly in 1953 and exposed government deception, McCarthyism, and racial bigotry. Presented annually for “special achievement in independent media,” the Izzy Award will go to an independent outlet, journalist, or producer for contributions to our culture, politics, or journalism created outside traditional corporate structures.

The first Izzy will be awarded for work done in the 2008 calendar year. The award winner will be chosen by a panel of judges who have expertise in independent media. The winner’s name will be announced and the award bestowed each February or March.

Information on how to nominate someone here.

December 18, 2008

John Miedema reviews Library Juice Concentrate

John Miedema, of the Slow Reading blog and upcoming book, has reviewed my Library Juice Concentrate….

Thanks, John.

December 12, 2008

The 2008 Falsies Awards

If you’re like me, you’re a librarian in part because you have a passion for the right to information, and by information I mean truth rather than lies. One of the books that originally kindled that passion for me in terms of its social meaning was Toxic Sludge is Good for You: Lies, Damn Lies, and the Public Relations Industry, by John Stauber and Sheldon Rampton. The organization they work with, the Center for Media and Democracy, published a regular newsletter for years called PR Watch (it’s now the name of their website).

PR Watch has just come out with the 2008 Falsies Awards, which is their effort to “shine an unflattering light on those responsible for polluting the information environment over the past year.” The awards mention only a few examples of falsification perpetrated by the PR industry in the media sphere, but the PR Watch website has much more if you want to explore it.

If it sounds like I think we have an enemy, yes, you’re right, I think we do have an enemy, and it’s the PR industry.

Thanks to Susan Maret for sending the link to a listserv that I’m on.