Title Social Justice and Activism in Libraries
Subtitle Essays on Diversity and Change
Author Su Epstein, Carol Smallwood, Vera Gubnitskaia
ISBN 9781476672038
List price USD 55.00
Price outside India Available on Request
Original price
Binding Paperback
No of pages 228
Book size 178 x 254 mm
Publishing year 2019
Original publisher McFarland (Eurospan Group)
Published in India by .
Exclusive distributors Viva Books Private Limited
Sales territory India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, .
Status New Arrival
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“Should be used as the framework for a new curriculum in information studies; the most important contribution in a generation.”

Eino Sierpe, the Visual Library of Social Justice


“Practical, timely applications of theory to practice in the ongoing struggle for equity and justice.”

Karl Ericson, University of Detroit Mercy


“Authentic, real-life examples like these will move us forward as both keepers and providers of inclusive spaces and knowledge.”

Kristen Chinery, Walter P. Reuther Library, Wayne State University


“The topic of social justice and activism in libraries is both critical and timely, and there’s no more important aspect of this topic than moving beyond diversity to action.”

Aline Soules, Library Faculty, California State University, East Bay


Social Justice and Activism in Libraries is an essential handbook for those working to remake libraries into community spaces.”

Mira Tanna, Orange County Library System, Orlando, Florida.


In a changing world, with multiple and often conflicting voices, the library’s important role as a location of safety and inclusion as well as the crusader for knowledge cannot be overstated. It can be easy to reflect differing perspectives in our collections and displays, but if we do not practice our values, we are lacking. As leaders in our communities, librarians have an obligation to educate and inform; we must be ready to lead and model the principles we support. The question that arises for many is: how?

As an integral part of the community, libraries need to move beyond diverse collection development and social issues displays. Here, experienced librarians offer suggestions, guidance and inspiration to motivate librarians at all levels to consider the assumptions we may take for granted, seek out new creative paths, and work to support change in our organizations. Be it steps to create a book group for the intellectually disabled, partnering with social workers or advocacy for employees with disabilities from within, included in these chapters are both theoretical foundation and hands on practical ideas.


Foreword (Wanda Kay Brown)

Preface (Su Epstein, Vera Gubnitskaia and Carol Smallwood)


Part I: Bringing Underrepresentation to the Forefront

Literacy Support for the Intellectually Disabled: A New Frontier for Library Outreach (Matthew Conner and Leah Plocharczyk) • Prison Libraries and Social Justice: Helping Inmates Succeed (Andrew Hart) • Buttressed Beliefs, Informed Action: Black Lives Matter, an Academic Library and Building Critical Community Discourse (Ian Boucher) • Improving Everyday Lives: Free Administrative Legal Assistance and Critical Trans* Politics in Libraries (Elliott Kuecker)

Part II: Establishing Partnerships

Food for Thought: Feeding Mind and Body at Public Libraries (Amber H. Williams, Erica Freudenberger and Cindy Fesemyer) • Partnering for Social Justice: Social Work Students’ Placement at Public Libraries (Sarah C. Johnson) • Unidos por la Causa: Community-Driven Collection Development for Chicanx Archives
(Zoe Jarocki and Amanda Lanthorne)


Part III: Building Communities

Rethinking the Role of Libraries as Active Social Spaces (Carrie Fishner and Lisa Tessier) • Building Community in an Academic Library (Carolyn Frey and
Jami Powell
) • Critical Librarianship in Action: Supporting Campus-Wide Dialogues (Maureen Rust and Aimée C. Quinn)

Part IV: Administering with Diversity

Advocacy from Within: Employees with Disabilities (JJ Pionke) • Healing Justice: An Approach of Caring for Intersectional LIS Professionals
(Melissa-Villa-Nicholas, Tonyia J. Tidline and Tracy S. Drake) • Encouraging Social Justice Professional Development (Laura Francabandera) • Reflecting Diversity in the Library of Congress Subject Headings (Elizabeth Hobart)


Part V: Supporting Activism

The Archival Is Political: Archival Practice as Political Practice (Anna J. Clutterbuck-Cook and Jeremy Brett) • Hip Hop and Activism: Bridging Boundaries and Healing Through Hip Hop Pedagogy (Kai Alexis Smith) • Bringing Critical Race Theory to the Library Bill of Rights: From the Past to the Future
(Celeste Bocchicchio-Chaudhri) • Collaborative Justice: Gender-Based Activism in the University Library (Carrie Moran and Leandra Preston-Sidler)


Part VI: Generating Programming

Creating Communities Through Living Books: The Human Library Experience at Southern New Hampshire University (Heather Walker-White and
Joshua Becker
) • Check(Out) Your Privilege, or: How We Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Putting on a Diversity Event (Damon Campbell, Lydia Harlan and
Rachel Lilley
) • Moving Beyond Just Talk: Diversity Programming at an Academic Library (Martin L. Garnar) • Getting Serious in the Public Library with “Current Conversations” (Jamie L. Huber, Whitney R. Gerwitz, Heather M. Wefel and Melanie Foster)

Part VII: Expanding Teaching

Teaching Social Justice with Special Collections and Archives: Critical Information Literacy and Primary Source Analysis (Julie M. Porterfield) • Research Skills in International Issues and Social Justice Programs: Talking Points and Literature Review (Paul Jerome McLaughlin, Jr.) • Advocating for Diversity Through Embedded Librarianship (Faith L. Bradham)

About the Contributors


About the Editors:

Su Epstein is the director at the Saxton B. Little Free Library in Columbia, Connecticut. Her writing has appeared in several publications as well as the blog Public Libraries Online.

Carol Smallwood, a recipient of the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award and multiple Pushcart nominations, is the author of journal articles as well as editor of numerous books including one in Poets & Writers Magazine List of Best Books for Writers. A Michigan resident, her experience includes school, public and special libraries.

Vera Gubnitskaia has worked as a library manager, consultant, and reference librarian in public and academic libraries in Russia and the United States. During her career as a writer and editor, she contributed chapters to several professional publications, edited multiple anthologies, and published book reviews. She is currently an art fellow at Crealde School in Winter Park, Florida.

Target Audience:

This is an essential handbook for those working to remake libraries into community spaces.



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