Jefferson-Madison Regional Library in Charlottesville, Virginia (Photo: Billy Hathorn/Creative Commons license)

Charlottesville Violence Poses New Challenges for Libraries

August 18, 2017

Libraries at both the public and university level historically have developed response plans for natural disasters, but the Charlottesville demonstrations and similar white nationalist rallies planned for other cities have library administrators working not only to protect patrons and library infrastructure but to assist in relief efforts. Both the University of Florida and Texas A&M … Continue reading Charlottesville Violence Poses New Challenges for Libraries


Diversity, Equity, Inclusion armbands

ALA Condemns Racism and Violence in Charlottesville

August 15, 2017

“The ALA expresses our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those lost and injured during this weekend’s protests in Charlottesville, Virginia. We will not forget their efforts to enlighten and safeguard their communities from bigotry while opposing racist, anti-immigrant, anti-GLBTQ, and anti-Semitic violence. We stand in solidarity with the people of Virginia as … Continue reading ALA Condemns Racism and Violence in Charlottesville





Radio host Tom Joyner addresses the crowd at the 10th National Conference of African American Librarians in Atlanta on August 10.

NCAAL Opens in Atlanta

August 11, 2017

After listening to opening remarks from BCALA President Denyvetta Davis and an invocation from Reverend Lorraine Jacques White, attendees rose to participate in an a capella performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” also known as the “Negro National Anthem.” The lyrics urged listeners to “march on till victory is won,” and this line in … Continue reading NCAAL Opens in Atlanta


The convention floor at San Diego Comic-Con, held July 19-22.

Comics in the Classroom: Beyond Maus and Persepolis

July 28, 2017

One prominent theme at this year’s SDCCEL was how to “level up” comics readership and support in schools and libraries. How do we move beyond excellent but well-known titles like Persepolis and Maus to include more diverse titles and ensure systematic buy-in with key stakeholders like principals and school board members? The July 20 session … Continue reading Comics in the Classroom: Beyond Maus and Persepolis


A “book” who identifies as Palestinian converses with two “readers” at a Human Library event hosted by Williams College Libraries in Williams­town, Massachusetts.

If These Books Could Talk

June 1, 2017

“That’s cool,” Ménard thought, though she couldn’t imagine the initiative taking hold at her academic library. But that summer, another Williams professor also learned about Human Libraries while in Europe, and he later approached Ménard about collaborating on a campus event. That’s how, in 2012, Williams College became one of the first institutions in the … Continue reading If These Books Could Talk


Librarian's Library: Karen Muller

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

May 1, 2017

Creating Inclusive Library Environments: A Planning Guide for Serving Patrons with Disabilities, by Michelle Kowalsky and John Woodruff, begins with an overview of changes initiated because of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 and the follow-up ADA Amendments Act of 2008—changes designed to ensure a barrier-free environment. From there, the book covers policy … Continue reading Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion



Michelle Baildon, collections strategist for arts and humanities and a science, technology, and society librarian, presented a poster March 23 at ACRL titled “Creating a Social Justice Mindset.”

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: Dispatches from ACRL

March 24, 2017

Incorporating social justice into the academic library What would it look like if academic libraries incorporated more equity, diversity, and inclusion into their everyday work? Members of the Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice (DISJ) task force of the MIT Libraries’ Collections Directorate have explored this question, looking at library activities—including archives, technical services, collection development, … Continue reading Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: Dispatches from ACRL


Jelani Cobb speaks at the ACLU of Illinois luncheon, March 17, 2017.

Old Snake, New Skin

March 20, 2017

So when the ACLU of Illinois held its annual luncheon at the Hilton Chicago on March 17, FTRF and other staffers from the American Library Association (ALA) headquarters joined some 2,000 other like-minded individuals for its program on “Fighting for a More Perfect Union.” Although the topics addressed did not touch on libraries per se, … Continue reading Old Snake, New Skin