An officer escorts five men from the Alexandria (Va.) Library in August 1939. They were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.

“I Always Will Refuse”

June 1, 2017

August 21, 1939. Five African-American men—William “Buddy” Evans, Edward Gaddis, Morris L. Murray, Clarence “Buck” Strange, and Otis Lee Tucker—walk into the whites-only Alexandria (Va.) Library (now the Barrett branch library). Strange’s younger brother Bobby, 14, serves as lookout and courier. The men, who range in age from 18 to 22, ask for library cards … Continue reading “I Always Will Refuse”

The many faces of the librarian stereotype. Illustration: Rebecca Lomax and Vlada Young/Shutterstock

The Stereotype Stereotype

October 30, 2015

The answers lie in understanding the history of stereotypes in our profession and also in looking outside the profession to larger social conditions. We cannot separate our understanding of library stereotypes from the history of librarianship that influenced their development in the first place. Librarians are not explicitly responsible for the creation and perpetuation of … Continue reading The Stereotype Stereotype

John Lewis

John Lewis’s March

June 30, 2013

That was only one of many stories US Congressman John Lewis (D–Ga.) told a packed room of librarians during his Auditorium Speaker Series speech on Saturday afternoon. His deep, sonorous voice scarcely needed a microphone as he recounted his early years in the Civil Rights Movement—as one of the original Freedom Riders in 1960, as … Continue reading John Lewis’s March