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The Black Caucus of the American Library Association serves as an advocate for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources to the nation's African American community; …

The Black Caucus of the American Library Association serves as an advocate for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources to the nation's African American community; and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians.

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  • 1. Febrary/March 2012 Volume 39, No. 4 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 G R E E T I NG S F ROM P RE SI DEN T J O S N . H O L M A N “Spring is in the air!” spring, which as a scientific Depending on where you live, fact will naturally arrive, we there are definite signs that must work with and through spring is imminent. The un- this transition for BCALA. seasonably warm weather We will have to develop, many of us have enjoyed this plan, organize, and conduct winter now transitions into our annual spring election spring and provides a sense of using a reliable electronicINSIDE THIS ISSUE: hopeful exuberance with signs format that produces an hon- of spring all around us. An- orable and valid secure, and nuals bursting through the honorable election. We needNCAAL 8 Committee 2-3 earth, the greeting of the to assemble a crop of enthusi- become a more vibrant or-Chairs Directory grass, buds on the trees, and astic and engaging new offi- ganization, we must be en- the smell of blossoms in the cers and executive board gaged in its work. What bet- air. Spring is a definitive time members. We need to utilize ter time to be engaged thanBCALA Members Run for 5 of transition that most of us the talents and expertise ofALA Offices during this transition? easily see, readily accept, and our new organizational con- Anne Bradstreet, in gladly enjoy. sultant to fully construct a her Meditations Divine and “Spring is in the air!” virtual office that serves ourReflections of a Librarian 6-7 Moral said, “If we had no for BCALA as well as prepa- members, supporters, andin Jim Crow Alabama winter, the spring would not rations are being made for an partners. We need to finalize be so pleasant: if we did not administrative transition. On and unveil a new website that sometimes taste of adversity, a cyclical basis, all organiza- integrates social networkingEye-Opening Visit to a 14-15 prosperity would not be soHaitian Library tions and volunteer associa- in a way that enhances com- welcome.” It’s true, we are tions go through transitions. munication and delivers infor- always glad to escape the So it is time for BCALA as mation among our member- winter and so, “spring is in well. The transition will en- ship. the air! In this transitionalSupport Our Sponsor 16 compass our first electronic As BCALA mem- time, BCALA has the oppor- election, new officers, new bers, I believe that you can tunity to enjoy the pleasant- executive board members, a see the transition that is upon ness of spring and the pros- new organizational consult- us. I would encourage you toWhy Black History 18-19 perity that comes with it. I ant, and a new website. not only see it but to partici-Today? encourage you to embrace As president, I easily pate in it in whatever way you this time of transition as we see the transition, readily ac- can. To make it through this make plans, continue cept it and look forward to transition and continue to be aAward Winning Essays 22-26 projects, and together cele- enjoying it. Yet, I know that successful organization, it is brate future successes. the transition will be very imperative that our members challenging because it will be involved in the transition. require a lot of work. Unlike To go beyond our success and
  • 2. Page 2 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 8 T H N AT I O NA L C O N F E R E N C E OF A F R I C A N A ME R I C A N L I B R A R I A N S A U G U S T 8- 1 2 , 20 1 3 , C OV I N GTON , K E N T UC KY ( M E T RO C I NCI NNAT I ) P L A N NI N G C O M M I T T E E D I RE CTO RYConference Co-Chairs Conference Proceedings ExhibitsFannie Cox Gladys Smiley Bell Rudolph ClayLibrarian William R. & Norma B. Harvey Library Head of ReferenceOutreach and Reference Services, Main Hampton University Washington University LibrariesCampus 130 E. Tyler St. Campus Box 1061 Hampton, VA 23668 One Brookings, DriveAssociate Professor Voice:(757) 727-5371 St. Louis, MO 63130University of Louisville - Ekstrom Li- Fax: (757) 727-5952 Voice: (314) 935-5059brary Email: rudolphc@wustl.eduLouisville, Ky 40292-0001 Email: 852-2705 (voice mail) Carolyn Neal Lavonda Broadnax(502) 852-8736 fax Library of Congress 2303 Allison Rd.E-mail: University Hts, OH 44118 4710 Queens Chapel Ter., NEDenyvetta Davis Washington, DC 20017 Voice: (216) 320-9391Metropolitan Library System Voice: 202/707-0901 Email: cvaneal@att.net300 Park Avenue Fax: 202/252-3116Oklahoma City, OK 73102 Email: Fundraising(405) 606-3729 voice mail(405) 606-3722 fax Conference Treasurer Iris L. HanneyE-mail: President Unlimited Priorities LLC Stanton Biddle 1930 SW 48th LaneCommittees: BCALA Cape Coral, FL 33914 P.O. Box 174 Voice: (239) 549-2384Awards & Honors New York, NY 10159-0174 Fax: (239) 549-3168 Phone: (212) 933-1652 Email: Email: iris.hanney@unlimitedpriorities.comJannie R. CobbThe National Labor College Emily Guss Kelvin WatsonThe George Meany Memorial Archives Li- Head of Access and Technical Services Voice:(734) 834-8290brary University of Illinois – Chicago10000 New Hampshire Avenue Email: Library of the Health SciencesSilver Spring, MD 20903 1750 West Polk StreetVoice: (301) 431-5447 Chicago, IL 60612 MC763 Job Placement Co-ChairsFax: (301) 628-0161 (312) 996-8970Email: Email: Vivian Bordeaux Librarian Bridgeport Public LibraryJohn S. Page Evaluation 925 Broad St.Washington, DC 20008 Bridgeport, CT 06604Voice: (202) 363-4990 Dr. Sylverna Ford Voice: (203) 576-7418Email: Dean of University Libraries Fax: (203) 576-7137 126 Ned R. McWherter Library Email: vbor-Cheryl Neal (Emerging Leader) Memphis, TN 38152 deaux@bridgeportpubliclibrary.orgLibrary Information Associate Senior Voice: (901) 678-2201University of Arizona Libraries Fax: (901) 678-8218 Email: Michael WalkerDelivery, Description and Acquisitions Associate Librarian for Public ServicesTeam Virginia State University Karen LemmonsOffice: (520)621-6439 Library Media Specialist 849 West Wythe St.Fax: (520)621-4619 Howe Elementary School Petersburg, VA 2600 Garland Voice: (804) 524-6946 Detroit, MI 48214 Fax: (804) 524-5482 Voice: (313) 642-4801, ext.109 Email: Fax: (313) 642-4802 Email: (continued on Page 3)
  • 3. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 3N CA AL P L A N NI NG C O M M I T T E E ( C O N T I NU E D F RO M PAG E 2 )Local Arrangements Public Relations Langston Charles BatesMichelle McKinney Purdue University Pam GoodesReference/Technology Librarian Black Cultural Center Librarian Associate Editor, News ALAUniversity of Cincinnati 1100 Third Street American Library AssociationRaymond Walters College Library West Lafayette, IN 47907 50 E. Huron St.Muntz 115C Voice: ( 765) 494-3093 Chicago, IL 60611-27299555 Plainfield Road Email: bates17@purdue.eduCincinnati, OH 45236-1096 Email: pgoodes@ala.orgVoice: (513) 936-1546Fax: (513) 745-5767 Programs Registration Co-ChairsEmail: Julius Jefferson, Jr. Joanne EldridgeKim Thompson Information Research Specialist DirectorChildrens Librarian Library of Congress Lorain Public Library SystemMary Ann Mongan Library 5740 3rd Stress NW 351 Sixth Street502 Scott Blvd Washington DC 20011 Lorain, Oh 44052Covington, KY 41011 Voice: (202) 707-5593Voice: (859) 962-4060, ext 4256 Voice: (440) 244-1192 ext. 227 jcjeffjr@verizon.netEmail: Fax: (440) 244-4888 Email: Eboni StokesLogistics Senior Children’s Specialist DC Public LibraryJason K. Alston 126 Webster St., NE. #2Student Lynne Simpson Harding Washington, DC 20011University of South Carolina Voice: 202-277-8209 Science and Engineering DivisionVoice: (803)777-6493 Email: Edmon Low Oklahoma State University Voice: 405-744-2135Annie Marie Ford Danielle Walker Email: lynne.simpson@okstate.eduUniversity of Illinois, Chicago Voice: (301) 504-5904801 S. Morgan Fax: (301) 504-5243Chicago, IL 60607 Email: Danielle.Walker@ars.usda.govVoice: (312) 996-7353Email: BCALA UNITES WITH THE AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION AND OTHERS TO OPPOSE RESTRICTION OF ACCESS TO ETHNIC MATERIALS IN THE STATE OF ARIZONA tion of learning materials used in the program from Tucson stu- During its regular membership meeting at the American dents.Library Association’s Midwinter Conference in Dallas, Texas in A March 5, 2012 article in the Arizona Republic indi-January 2012, the Black Caucus of the American Library Associa- cates that, despite national attention and massive citizen outcry,tion (BCALA) joined ALA and the other major ethnic library cau- the program has not been reinstated. Additionally, a federal judgecuses in opposing a move by the Tucson (AZ) Unified School Dis- in Tucson has rejected a legal request from Tucson families totrict to remove educational materials from the schools associated force the district to reinstate its Mexican American Studies pro-with the district’s Mexican American Studies classes, which the gram.district had eliminated. Multiple media outlets reported that the Tucson Unified BCALA formally issued support of ALA’s resolution op- School District eliminated its Mexican Americans Studies pro-posing the district’s actions, which reportedly included confisca- gram on January 10, 2012 due to pressure from state officials associated with the Tea Party Movement.
  • 4. Page 4 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 N C A A L 8 P L A N N E R S TO B C A L A : W E N E E D YO U ! ! ! !Co-Chairs Fannie Cox of the University of Louisville and Denyvetta Davis of the Metropolitan Library System, are lookingfor volunteers to make this conference happen. They want to build a team of enthusiastic, dedicated, talented, and detail ori-ented individuals to plan, coordinate, and pull off our next conference. Sponsored by BCALA, Inc. and set in Covington,Kentucky in August of 2013, hundreds of people interested in the issues associated with Black librarianship will gather forcontinued education, professional development, naturally occurring networking, and of course loads of fun. It will take agreat team to accomplish this monumental task and the conference co-chairs are meticulously building that team.The intent will be to involve as many people as possible. Hopefully, you are interested in being involved and will respond tothis invitation to participate. Please contact Fannie and Denyvetta to let them know you are willing and able to work forBCALA, Inc. and its 8th National Conference. Please consider joining one of the following conference committees: Conference Gladys Smiley Bell Proceedings Lavonda Broadnax Exhibits Rudolph Clay Carolyn Neal Evaluations Sylverna Ford Karen Lemmons Fundraising Iris L. Hanney Kevin Watson Job Placement Vivian Bourdeaux Michael Walker Local Michelle McKinney Arrangements Kim Thompson Logistics Annie Ford Jason Alston Registration Joanne Eldridge Lynne Simpson Harding Conference Fannie Cox Co-Chairs Denyvetta Davis
  • 5. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 5T EM I TO P E T O R I O L A A N NO UN C ES A L A C O U NC I L C A N DI DAC Y BCALA member erty. I am a Technical Services While completing myTemitope Toriola is running for Librarian. I received my MLIS MLIS, I also had anotherALA Council. What follows is from the University of Pitts- unique opportunity to work onsome background information burgh in 2008. an independent project. I wason the candidate: While in library granted course credit for my I have been an active school I participated in a field project which is called ZooWikimember of ALA since begin- research project at the Pentagon (see http://www.zoo-wiki.comning library school in 2007. I Library in the Technical Ser- andam an intern member vices department. the Committee for During my timeProfessional Ethics at the Pentagon ZooWiki is a Wiki database ofand a 2011 Emerging Library I was able wildlife. It consists of imagesLeader. to work in several and information on various I am a PhD departments on wildlife species.student at Purdue University various projects, although thestudying Information Security. majority of my time was spentMy research is e-book piracy on original and copy catalog-and Digital Intellectual Prop- ing. EBONI STOKES ANNOUNCES ALA COUNCIL CANDIDACY District of Columbia Library Association- Childrens, YA, and School Media Specialist, Chairperson, 2006-2011Eboni M. Stokes, BCALA Executive BoardALA since: Member of Statement of Professional Concerns: 2004Current Position I have worked professionally for 7 years for D.C. PublicSenior Childrens Specialist, 2009, District of Columbia Library, starting out as a Children’s Librarian and movingPublic Library, Washington, DC up to my current position as Senior Children’s Specialist with expertise in Professional Development. I have beenPrevious Positions: working in libraries for over ten years, starting out as a workSenior Librarian, District of Columbia Public Library, June -study student at Tuskegee University’s department of in-2007-October 2009 terlibrary loans. I have worked in academic, special, andChildrens Librarian, District of Columbia Public Library, public libraries however the public library setting as beenAugust 2004-June 2007 the most rewarding. I have shown remarkable leadershipArchive Assistant, Atlanta History Center, May 2004-August capabilities in various organizations, as evidence by my2004 roles within BCALA, ALA, ALA-APA,Degrees and Certificates: ALSC and DCLA.Tuskegee University, BA, 2002; Clark Atlanta University, My concern is willMLS, 2004 ALA be able to ad- dress the lack of li-ALA and/or ALA-APA Activities: brary services to lowNew Members Round Table- Member. 2003-2009 income and literacyALSC- Chair for Local Arrangements Annual Conference in communitiesWashington D.C. 2007 across the nationALSC, Member, 2004-2009 during these hardPLA, Member, 2005-2009 economic times. WillALA-Childrens Book Council Joint Committee, 2010-2011 they continue to pro- mote and see theOffices held in the ALA-APA, state, & regional library need for diversityassociations, and other associations (include DATES): throughout the libraryALA-APA- Appointed Member, 2010-2011 profession.ALA-APA- Appointed Chairperson, 2011-2012
  • 6. Page 6 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 REFLECTIONS OF A LIBRARIAN AND STUDENT DURING THE JIM CROW ERA IN ALABAMA The following was presented by Charlcie Pettway On June 29, 1955, the NAACP secured a court order preventingVann of Jacksonville State University at the at the first the University from rejecting the admission applications of LucyMulticultural Information Roundtable Workshop of the and her friend based upon their race. Days later, the courtAlabama Library Association Feb. 22, 2012 at UAB amended the order to apply to all other African-American stu-Sterne Library: dents seeking admission. On the very eve of the day Lucy and her friend (who had married to become Pollie Myers Hudson) were to I am truly thankful to be here. I am also extremely thankful to register, the University Board of Trustees rejected Hudson on thethe pioneer librarians, educators, civil rights leaders and concern grounds of her "conduct and marital record", but reluctantly al-citizens of Alabama and the nation that allowed me and people of lowed Lucy to register. The University had the women investi-all colors to jointly participate in workshops (like this one today), gated and found out that Mrs. Hudson had became pregnant be-conventions, conferences and meetings held in public institutions. fore she married and they decided that her conduct was not oneApproximately 48 years ago, I would not have been allowed to that wanted in one of their students. I wonder how many otherenter the premises of any public or state institution of Alabama potential students were investigated. Hmmm I am just saying.not designated “Colored Only” due the Jim Crow Laws. The term Lucy she was barred from all dormitories and dining halls. At"Jim Crow" came from a white minstrel performer in the 1830s, least two sources have said that the board hoped that withoutThomas “Daddy” Rice. Rice darkened his face and sang and Hudson, Lucy would voluntarily choose not to attend. But Hud-danced ridiculously silly in a routine making fun of a black per- son and the community strongly encouraged her, and on Februaryson, called "Jim Crow." By the 1850s, this Jim Crow character was 3, 1956, Lucy enrolled as a graduate student in library science,one of several stereotypical images of black inferiority in Amer- becoming the first African American ever admitted to a whiteica’s pop-culture and was a standard act in the minstrel shows of public school or university in the state.that era. I am unaware of how the term “Jim Crow” became syn- On the third day of classes, a hostile mob assembled to preventonymous with the segregation, violence and abuse of African Lucy attending classes. Can you image the names she was called?Americans in the nineteenth and twentieth century. What is How scared she had to be and how brave she was to attemptknown is that by 1900, the term “Jim Crow” identified with those something that had not been done before by a man or woman.racist laws and actions that deprived people of African descent of The police were called to secure her admission but, that evening,their civil rights by defining them as inferior to whites. the University suspended Lucy on the grounds that it could not Beginning in 1875, Alabama Constitution requires separate provide a safe environment. Lucy and her attorneys filed suitpublic schools for black citizens. On May 18, 1896 the United against the University to have the suspension overturned. How-States Supreme Court rules in favor of “separate but equal” facili- ever, this suit was not successful and was used as a justificationties for blacks in Plessy v. Ferguson. The ruling allowed state law- for her permanent expulsion. University officials claimed thatmakers to enforce segregation in schools, libraries, hotels, hospi- Lucy had slandered the university and they could not have her astals, prisons, theaters, parks, bathrooms, trains, buses, cemeteries a student.and anywhere where people of all races may come together. The University of Alabama finally overturned her expulsion in As a librarian, I appreciate all those that paved the way for 1980, and in 1992, she earned her Masters degree in Elementaryequality for all men, women, black, white, Latino, Asian, to access Education from the University that she had applied to decadesinformation. Any success or opportunities I have experience is earlier.not due to my efforts alone, it is due to those who had to fight Four years ago after attending an Alabama Library Association“Jim Crow” and his buddies for me to have the opportunities I Convention, I emailed a fellow librarian that I had the pleasure ofand all librarians experience today. “Jim Crow” hindered many meeting. Neither he nor I are natives of Alabama, yet we bothblacks from learning from outstanding white teachers, professors realize Alabama is rich in culture and history. He encouraged meand librarians as well as it hindered many whites from learning to start a petition asking members of the Alabama Library Asso-from terrific black teachers, professors and librarians which could ciation interested in starting an information roundtable grouphave enriched their lives greatly. Today I can lawfully enter any focusing on sharing information of various cultures. We bothpublic library in Alabama and this nation without any violence knew that when people from diverse backgrounds gather together,and without breaking any laws. not only is information shared, knowledge is gained. After learn- Autherine Juanita Lucy was the first black student to attend ing the proper procedure in starting the petition, we were on ourthe University of Alabama, in 1956. Along with a Miles college way. I thought, surely gaining the acceptable number of signa-classmate, Pollie Ann Myers, Ms. Lucy decided to attend the Uni- tures would not be a difficult task. Who would not want to sign aversity of Alabama as a graduate student but, knowing that admis- petition to have multiple cultures give information about topicssion would be difficult due to the Universitys admission policies, they know? It would be a breeze right?she and Myers approached the National Association for the Ad- Wrong. It took a little longer than I anticipated. I assumed thatvancement of Colored People (NAACP) for help. Thurgood Mar- all of my colleagues would sign and that would not leave manyshall, Constance Baker Motley, and Arthur Shores were assigned required external signatures. It is not wise to assume. The oldto be their attorneys. While they started preparing her case, she saying is true, “The only sure things in life are death and taxes.”worked as a secretary. Court action began in July 1953. All subjects can be interpret in (CONTINUED ON PAGE 7)
  • 7. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 7 R E F L E C T I O N S, C O N T I N UE D F RO M PAG E 6different ways and just because I think that a multicultural group a good idea does not mean others think the same. Since I am In 1927, Delaney and the patients began broadcasting thethe only African-American librarian at my place of employment, I library activities on the local radio station. The patients partici-was in search of a diverse group of professionals I could learn pated in book and art fairs, displaying their work and deliveringfrom as well as possibly collaborate with for future projects. talks about books. They were given numerous opportunities andMonths went by and finally we got the names needed to be to pre- choices for a creative outlet with the various activities available.sent to the executive counsel of the Alabama Library Association Delaney also started the Disabled Veterans’ Literary Society,(ALLA). The petition was accepted and approved. Wonderful!!! which received acclaim from the Veterans Administration.Finding individuals of diverse backgrounds that are members of Delaney was active in many professional associations.the ALLA that would be willing to work on the roundtable has She served on the advisory board for the National Association forbeen a challenge for me and my friend. Yet the challenges I face the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) for five years. Sheare real yet they are not like those challenges of educator Ms. Au- was a member of the International Library Association and thetherine Lucy Foster. She faced Jim Crow head on and opened the American Library Association (ALA), where she served on thedoors of opportunity for women and people of all races in the field Council from 1946 to 1951. Delaney was elected councilor of theof librarianship and education. ALA Hospital Library Division in 1947. She was also a member of Before Mrs. Lucy, Mrs. Delaney, the chief librarian of the Veter- the Library of Congress Committee for Work with the Blind.ans Administration Hospital in Tuskegee, Alabama in 1924 also Delaney worked to join the Alabama Library Association, whichfaced racism and discrimination. She was the chief librarian for did not allow African Americans into its membership at that time.the next 34 years. She is known as the pioneer for her work with She was eventually invited to join by the president of the Alabamabibliotherapy. I can relate to Mrs. Delaney because she was a Yan- Library Association; however, on April 15, 1951, when the nextkee that lived in Alabama and so am I. She was born in NY in president took over, her dues were returned and her membership1889, and I was born in NJ in 19??, She graduated from the Col- was discontinued. The Association suggested that she start anlege of the City of NY in 1919, also graduated from a city school, African American chapter. She cited examples of other profes-St. Peter’s College (20 minutes from NYC) in 1991. She was an sional organizations that had integrated, including library associa-African American woman and so am I. However, I have never tions in other southern states. Delaney tried again to join the Ala-been told that I could not join an organization because of the color bama Library Association in 1953 and was rejection again.of my skin. Students from University of Illinois, University of North Mrs. Delaney defined bibliotherapy as, “the treatment of pa- Carolina and Atlanta University were sent to observe and learntients through selected reading.” from Delaney at the Veterans Administration Hospital. Librarians According to Wikipedia, Delaney used bibliotherapy extensively from Europe, South Africa and around the United States alsoin her work. She defined bibliotherapy as, “the treatment of pa- came to observe Delaney and her use of bibliotherapy. Her librarytients through selected reading.” She was an advocate of giving was used as a model for other Veterans Administration hospitals.the patients individual attention in order to learn their interests. She was invited to give speeches at American universities, com-She could use this knowledge to help pair them with books that munity churches and a conference in Rome in 1934.would engage them. To help choose appropriate books for pa- In 1948, she was named Woman of the Year by the Iotatients, Delaney would consult with the doctors and medical staff. Phi Lambda sorority. She received the same honor again in 1949She spoke of the value of having a librarian at medical meetings by the Zeta Phi Beta sorority, and then in 1950 by the Nationalregarding patients. She also reviewed books, especially those that Urban League. Also in 1950, an honorary doctorate was bestowedwere written by or depicted African Americans. When choosing upon her by Atlanta University. She was honored with a testimo-books for the library collection, Delaney took patient interests into nial banquet at the 1950 American Library Association conven-consideration. She also tried to maintain information on current tion, and the US Veterans Administration awarded her their topevents and reference materials. award for excellence in 1956. Mrs. Delaney accomplished all of this during the height To complement her work with books and bibliotherapy, Delaney of “Jim Crow” in Alabama. When I am discouraged at the Refer-developed many special programs for the patients. She instituted ence Desk or if one of my library instruction sessions is demand-book talks, monthly program meetings, a story hour and a variety ing, instead of complaining, I am going to think of Mrs. Sadie Pe-of other clubs. She could share her own interests in some of the terson Delaney and dig in a little deeper and keep teaching andgroups, such as the stamp and coin collecting clubs. She tried dili- listening to become better. When only four people show up forgently to get all of the veterans involved with clubs and library our Library Lunchtime Lectures I coordinate, I will think aboutactivities. She ran a book cart program so that patients confined to how Mrs. Delaney did not assist her patrons to get large numberstheir beds still had access to reading material. For those unable to for her statistics, but she was an outstanding librarian and shehold a book, Delaney arranged for the books to be projected on the creatively met the informational needs of her patrons.wall. The patient could turn the pages with a single button. She The struggle still continues yet we must stay con-also sang familiar songs and read poetry to help the patients feel nected as librarians and people that have a strong legacymore relaxed. of triumph over adversity. She continued her work with the blind by teaching Brailleat the hospital. Delaney acquired talking books for the blind pa-tients. Delaney taught more than 600 patients how to read Braille.They were also encouraged to join the clubs and programs thatwere run, giving them the same opportunities as the other
  • 8. Page 8 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 BLOGS ABOUT CHILDREN’S AND YOUNG ADULT’S AFRICAN AMERICAN BOOKS Submitted by Karen Lemmons, a library media new posts. You will also understand why this blog was nominatedspecialist with Detroit School of the Arts as one of the most fascinating blogs of 2012. Blogs and blogging continue to be one of the best re- The HappyNappyBooksellersources for all kinds of information: social, political, educational, cultural. The blogs listed below focus on children’s andyoung adult’s African American literature. These blogs include A blogger since 2008, this bookseller has written hun-book reviews, author interviews, reading challenges, and more. dreds of reviews on books ranging from picture books to middleOne or two target a particular genre and/or age group; the rest are grades. Also on her blogs are author interviews and guestmore general. There are probably more blogs written by African bloggers.Americans about children’s and young adult’s African Americanbooks. If you know of more, please let me know. I will be happyto write about it! MissDomino, Warrior Library Media Specialist, Lover of Street Literature The Brown Bookshelf Founded by several children’s and young adult’s litera- Miss Domino and the Warrior Librarian are two blogsture, "The Brown Bookshelf is designed to push awareness of the created by K.C. Boyd, Library Media Specialist with the Chicagomyriad of African American voices writing for young readers. Our Public School district. In her introduction, she writes: “Hi, Stu-flagship initiative of is 28 Days Later, a month-long showcase of dents and books are my business! I am a lover and supporter ofthe best in Picture Books, Middle Grade and Young Adult novels African-American Fiction and Street Literature for teens andwritten and illustrated by African Americans. The founders of The adults. This blog is a way that I can share some of the events thatBrown Bookshelf are: Paula Chase Hyman, Varian Johnson, Don take place in the Library Media Center at my school. Feel free toTate, Kelly Starling Lyons, Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, drop in from time to time and join the conversation.”Tameka Fryer Brown, Gwendolyn Hooks, If you have not “dropped in”, you are missing out onAnd Crystal Allen. information on the current and older urban literature for young Not only is the Brown Bookshelf famous for its 28 Days adults. She includes students‘ comments, interviews, as well asLater Initiative, this blog also her own personal reviews of the books she features.Features numerous reviews and other literary events. Reading in Color Cracy QuiltEdi Ramblings of an urban high school librarian 2011 Winner of the Best Teen Blog, Reading in Color is Edi writes: “I’m a high school librarian who works to created by MissA,improve the literacy of teens of color. While reading is the basis a high school student. She states “Reading in Color is a book blogfor all literacies, to me it also includes technology, financial and that reviews YA/MG books about people of color (poc). There is aother literacies which are necessary to navigate the world around serious lack of books being reviewed by teens that are YA/MGus.” about people of color, I hope my blog is one step closer to filling in Her blogs include book reviews, literary events, and this void.booklists. I started Reading in Color after I discovered the wonderful world of book blogs. I loved being able to discuss books with fellow book lovers. But I soon noticed that very few books about POC were digibooklibrarian being reviewed. I wanted recommendations of YA books POC, sometimes I got tired of reading about the white norm. So I started this blog to get recommendations about YA POC and share them with others. After all, I couldnt be the only teen of color who digibooklibrarian was created by kYmberly Keeton. In felt this way? Since starting my blog, Ive been including MG thatthe about section of her blog she writes: “I am a writer, entrepre- features POC.neur, artistic socialite, and future librarian. I created this blog to In addition to hundreds of book reviews, she also posts readingdocument my experiences as an African American graduate stu- challenges, and writedent in Library Science & Information Technology. editorials to publishers about poc. My blog features news, events, advocacy, and humor. Ibelieve that this is the only way that I will be sane for the next twoyears, is by sharing what I have learned with others.”If you have not visited kYmberly’s blog, you should. Filled withinformation on e-books, events, history, and other relevant e-information, you will want to subscribe to receive notifications of
  • 9. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 9 AUTHOR ASHANTI WHITE TACKLES LIBRARIAN STEREOTYPES Some people believe that perception is reality. Others oppose Some librarians think that we should simply ignore thethis idea. No matter where we stand, we must admit that perception can stereotypes perpetuated in film and on television, but those images arehave wide reaching effects. The librarian profession is experiencing more than fodder. They bleed into the public mind, stopping the youngthose effects in the current recession. child from seeking help. The ill-High schools in Wichita, Kansas elimi- informed ideas dissuade minorities fromnated 278 positions, including 10 librar- entering librarianship, further perpetuat-ian jobs. Superintendent John Allison ing underrepresentation. Most impor-boasts that the change will save nearly tantly, the lawmakers believe the nega-$410,000 and will not adversely affect tive images, cutting our funding becausestudents. However, the librarians will be anyone can do it.replaced with library clerks who are only Rather than accept the popularrequired to hold a high school diploma perceptions, librarians have to take anand will not receive training on proper active role in challenging them. Someresearch techniques, the principles of have, creating blogs, acting as lobbyists,librarianship, or assisting multiethnic and getting from behind the desk and outcustomers. Likewise, the Charlotte- into the community. I have written aMecklenburg (NC) school district re- book, Not Your Ordinary Librarian:cently committed to 739 layoffs that left Debunking Popular Perceptions of Li-20 schools without trained librarians or brarians, that highlights some of thesemedia specialists. Charlotte-Mecklenburg measures in addition to offering otherSuperintendent Peter Gorman explained, ideas for exposing the diversity and"When we say, Dont cut a classroom necessity of librarians. It also traces theteacher, thats what you end up with. You history of librarian stereotypes, demon-cut media specialists or other things." strates how we have been portrayed in Librarians are educators, sup- the media, and discusses the truth behindporting instructors and acting as gate- some of the myths and the resultingkeepers to information that might other- detriment. Practical for professionals,wise be overlooked by the individuals students, recruiters, and administrators, Ithat need it the most. Sadly, most people, hope that this book serves as a founda-including superintendents and legislators tion for understanding the ridiculousnessare ignorant of our responsibilities. They of stereotypes while simultaneouslyassume that we sit behind a desk and read serving as catalyst in challenging imagesall day. They think that we shush customers and don’t want to be both- of librarians.ered. And if you aren’t a middle-aged white woman with glasses, we White, Ashanti. (2012). Not your ordinary librarian: Debunk-are easily relegated to the sexy librarian who also sits behind a desk and ing popular perceptions of librarians. Oxford: Chandos Publishing.shushes; you just do so seductively. ISBN 978-1843346708. PAN-AFRICAN STUDIES JOURNAL INVITES SUBMISSIONS As editor of The Journal of Pan African Studies ject in Zimbabwe via the Zimbabwe Pan African Youth Agenda ( I have the opportunity to communicate (see our 4.8 issue for more details). with national and international scholars and activist engaged in expressing themselves in relation to the life, history and cultureIn this mix, most recently I issued a call for a comprehensive of people of African heritage around the world. In this process I annotated bibliography of the work of Yosef A.A. Ben- have encouraged librarians to participate in the workings of the Jochannan, a call that is still open and waiting for a person or journal, and thus far, I have been successful. Past issues have group to fill which involve sending me a sample of at least five featured articles by librarians Sylvia A. Nyana (The Pennsylvania citations on the topic. In academia, the difference between ten- State University), Jocelyn Poole (Georgia State University, ure, promotion and general success often depends on being pub- Statesboro), and Texas Tech University librarians Susan Hidalgo lished, so I suggest to all seeking those goals, or those simply and Robert G. Weiner. seeking self/group fulfillment to contribute to our journal, and other similar enterprises that will advance new knowledge and Therefore, our forward thinking publication welcome your con- social responsibility. tributions as we acknowledge the insights of librarians on all aspects of our operation which include two library professionals Sincerely, on the editorial board, Kathleen E. Bethel of the Northwestern University Library, Ismail H. Abdullahi of the School of Library and Information Sciences at North Carolina Central University, Itibari M. Zulu, editor of The Journal of Pan-African Studies and space for contributors to participate in a youth library pro-
  • 10. Page 10 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 COLORFUL VOLUMES: A LIST OF BIOGRAPHIES ON AFRICAN AMERICAN LIBRARIANSBy Michele Fenton Morris: Stories of Family, Community, and History, 1908-2010.Ardizzone, Heidi. An Illuminated Life: Belle da Costa Greene’s Baltimore: PublishAmerica, 2010.Journey from Prejudice to Power. New York: Norton, 2007. Sinnette, Elinor D. V. Arthur Alfonso Schomburg, Black Biblio-Boyd, Melba J. Wrestling with the Muse: Dudley Randall and the phile & Collector: A Biography. New York: New York Public Li-Broadside Press. New York: Columbia University Press, 2003. brary, 1989.Cooper, Izetta R. and Kyra E. Hicks. Liberia: A Visit through Thompson, Julius E. Dudley Randall, Broadside Press, and theBooks. N.p.:, 2008. Black Arts Movement in Detroit, 1960-1995. Jefferson: McFarland, 1999.Davis, Thadious M. Nella Larsen: Novelist of the Harlem Renais-sance: A Woman’s Life Unveiled. Baton Rouge: Louisiana Uni- Tolbert, Odie Henderson. New Chicago and Beyond: The Autobi-versity Press, 1994. ography of Dr. Odie H. Tolbert, Jr. Jonesboro: Grant House, 2009.Hewitt, Vivian D. and Ann Rothstein-Segan. The One and Only:Vivian Ann Davidson Hewitt. San Francisco: Blurb, 2010. Torrence, Missouri L. Dulcina DeBerry: Door Opener. Hunts- ville: Golden Rule, 1996.*Hildenbrand, Suzanne. Reclaiming the American Library Past:Writing the Women in. Norwood: Ablex, 1996. Wilkin, Binnie T. African American Librarians in the Far West: Pioneers and Trailblazers. Lanham: Scarecrow, 2006.Hutchinson, George. In Search of Nella Larsen: A Biography ofthe Color Line. Cambridge: Belknap of Harvard University Press, *Women of Color in Librarianship: An Oral History. Ed. Kath-2006. leen de la Pena McCook. [Chicago]: ALA, Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship, 1998.Jones, Kirkland C. Renaissance Man from Louisiana: A Biogra-phy of Arna Wendell Bontemps. Westport: Greenwood, 1992. *Although these two books aren’t exclusively about African Americans, they do contain biographies of notable African Ameri- can librarians.Josey, E.J. and Ismael Abdullahi. E.J. Josey: An Activist Librar-ian. Metuchen: Scarecrow, 1992. Michele Fenton is a catalog librarian at the Indiana State LibraryMealy, Todd. Aliened American: A Biography of William How- in Indianapolis, Indiana. She received her MLIS from the Univer-ard Day. Baltimore: PublishAmerica, 2010. sity of North Carolina at Greensboro, and is the editor/compiler of the annual compilation Little Known Black Librarian FactsMorris, Christine W. and Barbara J. Sorey. Christine Wigfall and its companion blog of the same name. Dr. Miles M. Jackson, a retired professor at the Univer- sity of Hawaii’s School of Library and Information Sci- ence, has released a documentary film about the his- tory and experiences of African-Americans in the state of Hawaii. To learn more about the documentary, enti- tled, “Holding Fast the Dream: Hawaii’s African- American Experience”, please visit
  • 11. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 11 PUBLIC LIBRARIES NEED THE MIDDLE CLASS Submitted by Jason Alston public libraries where my parents reside. It appears in all these cases that libraries are being used by the down-and-out. I don’t One great thing about listening to liberal pundits such as see a lot of kids with computers at home coming to the library toBill Maher, Rachel Maddow, and the like is that they almost never work. The reference stacks aren’t as busy as they used to be. Andtake aim at benevolent service professions such as mine and cause the periodicals? Well, they tend to be in mint condition theseme to question my worth to society. days, not like the bent-up, cut-up magazines I remember. Few middle class people could afford to subscribe to all the periodicals ALMOST never. Maher, however, did just that during an they may want to read when I was a kid, but with periodical con-October episode of his HBO show, Real Time with Bill Maher. He tent (or sufficient complementary material) now available largelywas discussing societal spending decisions with guest and fellow for free on the ‘Net, visiting the library to read periodicals is ancomedian/author Penn Jillette, who mentioned libraries as facili- option that doesn’t even occur to most middle class folks.ties that citizens may lobby to have constructed in their communi-ties. Maher responded by saying libraries were a bad example and Providing services to the less fortunate is a noble thing,that he didn’t, “know anyone who’s gone to a library since 1998.” but in the class-warring current political climate of our nation, IJillette defended libraries and mentioned his own family’s use of fear that it can’t be the only thing public libraries seem to do. Cer-them, but Maher was visibly not swayed. tain voices on the right have successfully cultivated a large follow- ing of people who see as welfare any taxpayer service from which I took immediate offense to Maher’s remarks, so much they don’t directly benefit. And as governments that collect taxesthat I mentioned them to a few University of South Carolina pro- continue to be in dire straits, people will continue headhunting forfessors during a SLIS department social the following weekend. services that they can cut. What better a target than these bookThey offered the typical responses to questions of modern library warehouses with the computer labs? If I have to pay for my Inter-relevance, including that public libraries are serving record num- net, why should anyone else get to use it on my tax dollar?bers of patrons in these times of economic distress. But whatreally struck me was when a journalism professor also in atten- There will always be people who don’t use public librar-dance said I’d need to remember that Maher moves through well- ies, and that’s okay. But there needs to be something in it for theoff social circles where libraries wouldn’t be in high demand. middle class. Right now, I see the middle class as a confused lot. The liberal middle class fights on behalf of the poor and blames That’s when it hit me, and my offense became concern. the rich for the nation’s problems. The conservative middle classPublic libraries are doing some really great things right now: help- fights on behalf of the rich and blames the poor for the nation’sing people find jobs, offering people free classes to improve their problems. Eventually though, I think – rather, I hope – that theliteracy and technology skills, and providing a host of other ser- middle class will reclaim its political position of power and oncevices. But – unless my perspective is horribly jaded – it seems the again fight for its own interests. But when the middle class startsservices offered by today’s public library are used largely by peo- calling the shots again, there will be many among its ranks whople in unfortunate economic and social situations: the homeless, call for ending services that disproportionately benefit the lessunemployed job seekers, the working poor, and people attempting fortunate. If public libraries continue to be one of these services,to earn high school equivalency degrees or degrees from the myr- they will continue to be targets for downsizing, even when theiad of online, for-profit colleges. economy rebounds. The people we seem to lose more and more, and who I don’t know what we can offer that will entice middlehappen to be the people we still need, are middle- and upper-class class patronage, but I know that we as a profession are smartpatrons. People really started gaining widespread home access to enough to come up with something. Local history and genealogythe World Wide Web during my latter middle school and early are good starts and topics with which many public libraries havehigh school years in the mid-to-late 1990s. Before this, no matter assisted for decades. But we’ll need more, and we’ll need it soon,your economic status, you were headed to the library when you and we’ll need middle class people to know about everything we’rehad to do a report, and you’d see your schoolmates there, even offering that’s new. We need to start thinking of programmingwell-off ones. You’d also see people there who had come by to and services we can offer with the middle class specifically inread newspapers, or sports and cultural magazines. You’d see mind; they will be the decision-makers.people visiting reference to get information about weather, farm-ing, and out-of-town phone numbers. And people always seemed When even progressives like Bill Maher publicly ques-to be in the stacks, presumably searching for obscure facts. Pa- tion the relevance of libraries, we need to take it as a warning.tronage was not restricted by economic status. Otherwise, if the economy is back on its feet in 2024, you’ll hear a lot more than just one talk show host saying, “I don’t know any- If this is still true today, I’m not seeing it. I was employed one who’s been to a library since 2012.”at a public library until late last summer and I still visit the publiclibraries wherever I am, be it the town where I go to school, or the
  • 12. Page 12 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 KATHLEEN E. BETHEL PRESENTS A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF 2011 BLACK STUDIES REFERENCE BOOKSAaseng, Nathan. African-American Athletes. Rev. ed. New York: Guthrie, Dorothy Littlejohn. Integrating African American Lit-Facts On File, 2011. erature in the Library and Classroom. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2011.Aaseng, Nathan. African-American Religious Leaders. Rev. ed. New York: Facts On File, 2011. Handbook of African American Health: Social and Behavioral interventions. Anthony J. Lemelle, Wornie Reed, andThe African-American Almanac. 11th ed. Detroit: Gale Research, SandraTaylor, editors. New York: Dordrecht: Springer, 2011. 2011. Historically Black Colleges and Universities: An Encyclopedia. F.African American Eras. Segregation to Civil Rights Times. 4 vols. Erik Brooks and Glenn L. Starks. Santa Barbara, CA: Detroit: UXL, 2011.. Greenwood, 2011.Bader, Philip. African-American Writers. Rev. ed. by Catherine Hornsby, Alton. Black America: A State-by-state Historical En- Reef. [Series: A to Z of African Americans] New York: cyclopedia. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2011. Facts On File, 2011. In Honor of: Libraries Named for African Americans. CompiledBankston, Carl L. Great Lives from History. African Americans. 5 by George C. Grant; with prefaces by Andrew "Sekou" vols. Pasadena, CA: Salem Press, 2011. Jackson & Loretta Parham. Jonesboro, AR: GrantHouse, 2011.Beckford, Geraldine Rhoades. Biographical Dictionary of Ameri- can Physicians of African Ancestry, 1800-1920. Cherry King, Stewart R. Encyclopedia of Free Blacks and People of Color Hill, NJ: Africana Homestead Legacy Publishers, 2011. in the Americas. New York: Facts On File, 2011.Carey, Charles W. African American Political Leaders. Rev. ed. Otfinoski, Steven. African Americans in the Visual Arts. Rev. ed. [Series: A to Z of African Americans] New York: Facts [Series: A to Z of African Americans] New York: Facts On File, 2011. On File, 2011.Controvich, James T. African Americans in Defense of the Na- Rummel, Jack. African-American Social Leaders and Activists. tion: A Bibliography. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, Revised by G.S. Prentzas. Rev. ed. [Series: A to Z of Afri- 2011. can Americans] New York: Facts On File, 2011.Encyclopedia of African American Music. Emmett G. Price III, Wallenfeldt, Jeffrey H. Black American Biographies: The Jour- executive editor. 3 vols. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, ney of Achievement. New York: Britannica Educational 2011. Pub., in association with Rosen Educational Services, 2011Encyclopedia of African American Popular Culture. Jessie Car- ney Smith, editor. 4 vols. Santa Barbara, CA: Green- Who We Are: Blacks. By the New Strategist editors. 2nd ed. wood, 2011. Ithaca, NY: New Strategist Publications, 2011. World of a Slave: Encyclopedia of the Material Life of Slaves in the United States. Martha B. Katz-Hyman and Kym S.Gilmore, Al-Tony. The Presidents and Executive Directors of the Rice, editors. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood, 2011. National Educational Association and the American Teachers Association: A Biographical Directory. Wash- ington, DC: National Education Association, 2011. Prepared By Kathleen E. Bethel African-American Studies LibrarianGray, John. Jamaican Popular Music, From Mento to Dancehall Reggae: A Bibliographic Guide. Nyack, NY: African Di- Northwestern University Library aspora Press, 2011. Evanston, IL 60208 ©
  • 13. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 13 NEWS FROM NC CENTRAL UNIVERSITY SLIS!NCCU SLIS RECEIVES 3RD CONSECUTIVE IMLS GRANT NCCU’s School of Library and Information Sciences. “Extensive research shows that poor literacy skills among young African-The School of Library and Information Sciences at North Caro- American males have lifelong negative consequences. Librarieslina Central University received a third grant in 2011 from the and librarians have always played an important role in promot-IMLS in the amount of $358, 431.00 to recruit students to its ing literacy, and yet there is no coordinated national effort toprogram. Seventeen students were selected as IMLS Scholarship address this persistent socio-economic problem.”recipients. Each student will receive tuition anda stipend for the fall, spring, and first semester The conference will focus on three areas:of summer school. Recipients will also be • Research — Reviewing what is known about thefunded to attend the 2012 Annual conference of literacy development and needs of young blackthe American Library Association (ALA) in Ana- males.heim, California. In the spring of 2012 before • Programs and Services — Examining the pro-attending the ALA conference the students will grams that support literacy development, and iden-hold a colloquium on the campus of North Caro- tifying what gaps exist.lina Central University to address topics highly • Resources — Identifying the resources needed torelevant to Library and Information Sciences. enable school and public libraries to remedy theSince 2006 the School of Library and Informa- literacy gap.tion Sciences has received approximately twomillion from the IMLS. The findings will be summarized in a white paper that will serve as a call to action. Owens said theNCCU AND UNC CHAPEL HILL PLAN JOINT paper will inform a broad range of stakeholdersSUMMIT ON BLACK MALE LITERACY about the extent of the crisis and offer recommenda- tions for addressing it. Dr. Irene Owens, Dean, NCCU SLIS “This will not be a one-shot program,” Owens said.The School of Library and Information Sciences “An essential goal of the summit is to establish aat North Carolina Central University is also part- means of sustaining the initiative. We have a magnifi-nering with the School of Information and Library Sciences at the cent partnership between two Library and Information SciencesUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on another grant programs, and together we look forward to addressing this im-from the IMLS to hold a summit on June 3-5, 2012, to address portant challenge to our society.”the topic: “Building a Bridge to Literacy for African-AmericanMale Youth,” which will take place in Chapel Hill June 3-5, 2012. Key participants from NCCU, in addition to Dr. Irene Owens, willAmong those expected to attend are members of the library and include Dr. Jonathan Livingston, a psychologist who has con-education community, researchers, representatives of organiza- ducted extensive research involving African-American males; Dr.tions focused on the needs of African-American youth, publishers Pauletta Brown Bracy, a longtime professor in the School of Li-and young black males. brary and Information Sciences and a specialist in children’s re- sources and services; and Dr. Kevin Rome, vice chancellor of“The IMLS grant is a welcome acknowledgement of the urgency student affairs, who oversees several initiatives at NCCU promot-and importance of this challenge,” said Irene Owens, dean of ing the success of black male students. A Few BCALA Briefs ● Beginning with this issue, the BCALA newsletter will ● Please be aware that BCALA will move to a paperlessbe willing to run candidate statements for financial BCALA mem- ballot process for the 2012 BCALA elections. It is imperative thatbers who are running for elected positions in professional organi- your membership be current and your email address correct tozations outside of BCALA, including ALA. Candidates wishing to participate in the election. Past President Andrew Jackson willsubmit a candidacy statement will need to contact the BCALA oversee the election. We hope that you will consider running fornewsletter editor. an office with BCALA. We cannot be an effective organization without you. More information will be forthcoming. ● Due to some confusion, BCALA wishes to stress thatthe site of the Eighth National Conference of African American ● The current newsletter committee consists of editorLibrarians (NCAAL), slated for August 8-12, 2013, is in walking Jason Alston, and BCALA members Tiffany Spragans, kYmberlydistance of Cincinnati, Ohio. Conference goers will be able to eas- Keeton , and Natasha Smith. If you have questions or concernsily access the attractions of Downtown Cincinnati. Worry not, about the BCALA newsletter, please contact the editor atthere will be plenty of fun activities for those who attend!! or BCALA president Jos N. Holman at
  • 14. Page 14 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 AN EYE-OPENING VISIT TO A HAITIAN LIBRARY We are sitting in the balcony of an out- When the American Library Association to film the trip. Both have accompanieddoor restaurant in Delmas, Haiti, the sound returned to New Orleans last year, a group me to Haiti to tour libraries and supportof music from the restaurant challenging of librarians in New Orleans founded Bib- the recovery.the noise from the evening traffic below as liotheque Parrainage (Library Sponsor).the sun slowly gives up the day. It is our Our purpose was to adopt a library in Haiti Menard has provided us with a driverfinal night in Haiti. Over the past few days and help with its recovery. That is our pur- and for the last few days, he and Michelwe have visited li- pose but not our plan. have taken us to libraries throughout Haiti;braries in several Our plan is to let the peo- some of these libraries did not experienceHaitian cities deter- ple of Haiti determine the earthquake, yet are still in need of as-mining how we can how that should take sistance. They’ve shown us footage of thebe of assistance in place. And so we’ve trav- earthquake taking place in the Nationalthe recovery of the eled here to identify their Library that was captured by the library’slibraries there. needs as determined by security cameras. They’ve introduced us to the Director of the Na- the mayor of one small town, the president Our host has been tional Library. of a major district, and the Minister of Cul-overly kind to us. ture, whose domain covers the libraries inEmmanuel Menard, Joseph Hector Louis Haiti. We’ve seen libraries in total darknessDirector of Biblio- Jeune, the Contact Liai- and libraries with light provided by the sun.theque Nationale, son for Bibliotheque Par- We’ve spoken to library managers aboutthe National Library rainage, is President of their collections, their library’s history, andof Haiti, and his staff the Board of the New Or- the challenges they face. The challengeshave taken us to leans Haitian Relief Task are many and the financial resources quitelibraries in coastal Force. Louis Jeune is limited.cities and nearby from Jacmel, Haiti andCroix des Bouquet lives in New Orleans. He Haiti and New Orleans historically haveand have given us a tour of their national and Mr. Menard’s executive assistant, Jo- been connected and influences in food,headquarters. hannes Lause Michel are our translators. music, art and language are present in our Michel lost her brother and father in the cultures. The obvious connection stems In the towns of St Louis du Sud, Caval- earthquake. Joel Vilmenay is from Wash- from the impact of the Haitian Revolutionlion, Aux Caye and Croix des Bouquets ington, DC and is one generation removed on the selling of the Louisiana Purchase towe’ve seen small libraries housing collec- America. Planta-tions that are outdated, yet free for loan to tion owners whoresidents of the town. These libraries have escaped the revo-been established by residents of the city lution settled inand at some point became part of the Na- New Orleans withtional Library public library system. They their slaves. Theare testimonies to the value and desire for 1811 Slave Revolteducation in Haiti and Menard wants to in Louisiana wastransform these small semblances of librar- planned with theies into educational centers that can have a assistance of for-positive impact on education in the coun- mer slaves of thetry. Most of these libraries don’t have elec- Haitian Revolu-tricity and patrons sit in the warm build- tion. In presentings reading newspapers, books or even day Haiti, theusing laptops with access to the Internet names of heroesvia stem cards. of the Haitian revolution are He wants to professionally groom his engraved aroundstaff by sending them to library schools in the wall in theAmerica then having them return to Haiti from being a native of Haiti. He is Presi- Museum of the Founding Fathers. Many ofto train other staff. There aren’t any library dent of the New Orleans Haitian Relief these names are quite common in Louisi-schools in Haiti. That is a need that must Task Force and has secured a videographer ana today. (Continued next page)be filled.
  • 15. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 15 EYE-OPENING VISIT TO HAITIAN LIBRARY (CONTINUED) Having gone through Hurricane Katrina broke, angry and in some cases dehuman- to Haiti to help them through their recov-and witnessed firsthand how a library can ized, these wounds did scar us. Haiti is still ery, I have helped myself to understandbe used as a disaster relief center for the living with their wounds. just have far I’ve come in my own recoverycommunity process and how limited my struggle hasfollowing a On this final been.natural dis- night of ouraster, I rec- visit, I feel in- Valencia Hawkins is the Associate Di-ognize the formed, grateful rector of Central Public Services for theimportance and humbled by New Orleans Public Library. She is presi-of a library what I have dent of Bibliotheque Parrainage, a non-to a devas- seen over the profit organization based in New Orleanstated com- past few days. to assist libraries in Haiti. The organiza-munity with As we are driven tion works closely with the New Orleansno financial back to our ho- Haitian Relief Task Force, whose boardresources. tel, we make a president is a member of BibliothequeWhen Hurricane Katrina devastated the stop to drop off one of the staff members Parrainage. Donations for libraries inCity of New Orleans, the New Orleans Pub- who lives in Delmas. Driving away from Haiti can be sent to Bibliotheque Parrain-lic Library became an immediate part of its the business district of Delmas, the lights age, P.O. Box 57418, New Orleans, La.recovery. The Main Library was leased by on the streets get fewer and fewer as weFEMA to establish a disaster relief center, enter the residential neighborhood untilproviding assistance to residents for FEMA finally there are no lights at all except forapplications, SBA applications, tarps for headlights of the truck wehouses, bottled water and more. The Main are in. A woman and aLibrary provided Internet use, faxing and a teenager walk in this dark-collection of books, DVDs, music and other ness and our driver turnsresources for homeless residents scattered off the lights perhaps not toabout a torn city and living in trailers, ho- blind them with the beam.tels, and cruise ships or if they were lucky, We are now in total dark-in one of the rare neighborhoods that es- ness, but there is a lightcaped the flood. But in Haiti, these sup- that goes off in my head.portive government agencies do not exist For several months and inand resources are limited. some cases years, there were no lights in parts of New Orleanians returned to a city full of New Orleans following Hur-flood swept homes and barren neighbor- ricane Katrina, but for peo-hoods and found themselves displaced, ple in Haiti, this is an every-overly exposed to the loss of human life, day reality. In reaching out READERS’ ADVISORY GUIDE TO STREET LIT WINS AWARD Vanessa Irvin Morris, a professor with the Drexel University College of Information Science and Technology, has won the 2012 Zora Neale Hurston Award for her book, “The Readers Advisory Guide to Street Literature.”
  • 16. PRESENTS … A J O U R N EY TO S O U TH A FRICA A ND Z A M BI A Traveling with our Group is Author Pamela Samuels Young. She will do a Book Signing in South Africa with local Avid Readersand Librarians invited as our guests. You get a FREE copy of her new book once you register. Pub. July 2012 April 18 - 27, 2013 PRICE IS $4,995 PER PERSON, PLUS AIRFARE DEPOSIT IS $1,000.00 PER PERSON, DUE APRIL 18, 2012 YOUR $1,000 DEPOSIT MUST BE RECEIVED TO LOCK IN THIS LOW PRICE INCLUDES: ALL HOTEL STAYS IN 5-STAR DELUXE HOTEL FACILITIES, BASED ON TWIN SHARE International Flight from New York City and local Africa flights Transfers between airports and hotels with professional Guides. Meals. All hotels serve lavish buffet breakfasts, most lunch and dinners are included Sightseeing by deluxe motor coaches with Professional Guides Cape Town – City tour, Table Mountain, Robben Island Cape Winelands – Wine tasting Tours Johannesburg – City Tour , Apartheid Museum, Soweto Zambia - Victoria Falls, Big Game Drives, Sunset Cruise along the Zambezi River on the African Queen Great shopping, wonderful restaurants, traveling with a small group of people adds to the lovely experience Partial payments (by personal check only) are expected and encouragedContact us today to receive our day-by-day itinerary with pictures of the hotels and sights. AVIVA TRAVEL GROUP POST OFFICE BOX 06259 CHICAGO, IL 60606-0259 Website: Email Address: Telephone: 1-815-267-7828
  • 17. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 17 MY FIRST EXPERIENCE AT ALA MIDWINTER 2012 By kYmberly Keeton Starbucks was right in the middle of the literary traffic as I maneuvered through the traffic. This was too much for me. I was able to foot the bill and travel to Dallas, Texas in I attended the following conference sessions including:January for my first experience at the American Library Associa-tion’s Midwinter Conference. I was nervous due to all of the crazystuff that has been going on with me since the beginning of thesemester. However, I knew that this was just ● Lita 201 Interest Groupwhat I needed to further acknowledge that what I ● Re-Imagining the Public Library in a Postam doing is what is right for my life. Recession Economy I remember when I wanted to become ● The Midwinter Conversation: Understand-an anthropologist; I was able to travel to Phila- ing Your Communitiesdelphia, PA, to visit their national conference. I ● History Librarians Interest Groupcourted several universities, rounded up a couple ● Midwinter Wrap-Up, featuring Lisa Loebof mentors, and was ready to enter in to the pro- Undoubtedly, the best part of thefession without looking back. After some things conference was the ALA Conference Exhibit.were revealed to me, I came to realize that being There were a lot of technological aspects in thean anthropologist was not in my destiny. I sat for field that I learned about and tested. In addi-a year and thought about where I wanted to be in tion, I was able to get free posters, books,the world of academia and my career profession. bags, t-shirts, and tips. I also met a lot of in- At the beginning of 2011, I was sitting at teresting people that I am going to stay in con-my computer and the word “librarian” came to tact with for the duration of my mind. I immediately started researching what Lastly, I won a scholarship (the E. J.librarians were all about and I was amazed. I Josey Academic Scholarship) through thefound my niche. As I walked in to the Dallas Con- Black Caucus of the American Library Associa-vention Center, I began to feel what I felt when I tion for an essay I wrote during my first semester of gradu-first started researching the field of librarianship. This time ate school. I was honored at the Dallas Marriott Hotel dur-around, I had a similar image as all of my peers: They All Read ing the conference and accepted the $2000.00 award withBooks. All of the conference attendees had their own unique a smile. The American Library Association’s Midwinterstyles and glasses too. The entire confer- Conference 2012 put a stamp of approval on what I haveence was interactive. As I entered the conference, there was an wanted to do all along with my life.ALA greeter who offered me the daily newspaper. Then, I wasable to download my schedule at the ALA Computer Station. JCLC 2012 IS COMING, REGISTRATION NOW OPEN!!! The second Joint Conference of Librarians of Color JCLC will provide a unique opportunity for learning with(JCLC), September 19-23, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri, will truly over seventy concurrent sessions including panel discussions,be a conference for everyone! Sponsored by the five associations presentations, workshops, and roundtables. Programming is di-of ethnic librarians—the American Indian Library Association vided into five tracks—Advocacy, Outreach and Collaboration;(AILA), the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association Collections, Programs and Services; Deep Diversity and Cultural(APALA), the Black Caucus of the American Library Association Exchange; Leadership, Management and Organizational Develop-(BCALA), the Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA), ment; and Technology and Innovation. Three pre-conferencesand REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and will provide more focused exploration of diversity leadership de-Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking— velopment, diversity action plans, and advocacy in diverse com-attendees will come together under the theme, “Gathering at the munities.Waters: Celebrating Stories, Embracing Communities.” Kansas City, newly revitalized and richly diverse, will The excitement for JCLC is already building, just visit provide an ideal backdrop for this gathering, with the beautiful Emmy winner Sonia Manzano, voted symbol of fountains set throughout the landscape and luxuriousone of the most influential Hispanics by People en Espanol for her accommodations — at attractive conference rates — provided bywork playing Maria on Sesame Street, has been announced as the the Crown Center. Kansas City offers numerous cultural opportu-opening keynote speaker. There will be numerous opportunities nities, including a culinary scene set apart by world-famous bar-to network and socialize, including an opening reception at the beque and nightlife fueled by a vibrant jazz community.beautiful Kansas City Public Library’s central branch. Two authorluncheons will allow attendees to get up-close and personal with JCLC is an experience like no other. Learn more aboutyouth authors Lauren Myracle and Sharon Flake and adult author JCLC by visiting Registration opensJulie Otsuka. And a busy exhibit hall will feature the latest from March 1, 2012. See you in Kansas City!library vendors and partners.
  • 18. Page 18 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 Why Black History Today?By Andrew P. Jackson (Sekou Molefi Baako) I think of those conversations because they should not have hap- pened. Following the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend Ireceived a telephone call from a Texas journalist asking my cur- Over the last two weekends, I’ve attended home going celebra-rent view on a topic I had been interviewed on in a 2006 newspa- tions for a prominent activist Baptist minister of forty-two yearsper. The question posed then and now reads, “Is Black History and a retired school board member who served for thirty years.Month Still Necessary?” Based on my response to her questions, I At each of their services, I spoke about the impact of their life’snever received the follow up call I expected. As I’m writing out work and efforts to improve the quality of life in our communities,these thoughts, I realize we’re entering the third week of our and that they were role models for all of us who grew in theirshortest month (even with an extra day for Leap Year) and our shadows. In less than a month, we’ve lost two cultural giants,children are off from school on winter recess. I wonder what les- Don Cornelius and Whitney Houston. Their contributions tosons they received or guest speakers or assembly presentations American and World culture are timeless and cannot be meas-they had in the first two weeks of our month? From what I’ve ured. I’m also reminded that Black History Month begins withseen, it doesn’t appear Black history is taught in large numbers of the birthday of one of our most important literary figures,schools, in the curricula or appears on standard examinations. Langston Hughes. So, any opportunity to bring Black history into classrooms is Last week a retired educator talked to me about a televisedlimited to three weeks during the month of February as schools panel discussion out of Boston on the pros and cons of Black His-are closed one week for winter intersession. Now for those tory Month today. So, the question has greater appeal than withschools that integrate our history into their curriculum this does- only one journalist. Maybe the question is not why Black Historyn’t apply. For those homes that speak black history in discussions Month is still necessary but why isn’t BHM still necessary?as part of the family dinner, this article does not apply. For those Should the criteria for celebrating hundreds of years of black con-churches that include black history into the service, Sunday tributions to American and World history and civilization be ig-school or youth activities, this does not apply. My fear is too oftennored or become passé only because of time or access to the infor-black history is not in these conversations as often as they should mation? If all things were equal and the vast amount of historicalbe. So far too many of the accomplishments by our people are information was included in our children’s textbooks and curric-still not on those pages from World and American history books ula does that mean we should no longer celebrate and discuss it,students read each day. recognize those heroes and sheroes who sacrificed and overcame, suffered and died on our behalf? Should we no longer search for Not long ago, I mentioned the name Paul Robeson to an under- the truth in history about our African roots and ancestors, orgraduate class and not one of the 34 students - freshman to sen- those incidents and events that affected the lives of black peopleiors, some recently out of high school and others returning adults, worldwide?knew who he was. On another occasion, a high school studenthad no idea what Dr. King’s “Dream” was and asked why he had a Recently, I participated on a panel discussing a new documen-holiday just because he had a dream. A middle school student tary, Before They Die The True Story of the Survivors of the 1921needed me to clarify what the “Underground Railroad” was be- Tulsa Race Riot and Their Quest for Justice. The few living survi-cause she thought I was referring to the NYC subway system. I vors range from 95-109 years in age. After eight years of legalcan remember a middle school daughter of a librarian colleague battles with the help of some of the most recognized legal mindsreceived an F grade on a paper written on Hannibal because her in this country, led by Harvard Law Professor, Charles J. Ogletree,teacher thought he was White. When I asked a recent college Jr., the City of Tulsa and State of Oklahoma have not officiallygraduate who earned her degree at a HBCU about black history accepted responsibility for the destruction of the entire Blackcourses taken while in attendance, she said none as they didn’t Greenwood community, every Black owned business and homesrelate to her studies or chosen profession. or the lives of over 300 black residents at the hands of White citi- zens. 10,000 black residents were displaced and homeless the day While sitting in an assistant principal’s office waiting to be led after their prominent community within the City of Tulsa wasto the classroom for another series of high school Black History destroyed. No one has been charged with a crime. No form ofMonth class visits, I spotted a black history textbook and teacher’s justice or compensation has been made to the living survivors orguide published two years earlier. This text was expressly written their families. The Supreme Court of this nation has yet to hearfor use in middle and high schools. I was familiar with it and knew their case. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”that copies were sent to every middle and high school in the City Dr. King once said, and this is a clear case of racial hatred, ex-by the publishing company. When I opened the book, the spine treme envy and injustice. Did you know about this “incident”cracked, letting me know it had never been opened. When I asked that happened on May 31, 1921 as a result of a lie about a blackthe principal about the books, he told me the administration had youth who allegedly accosted a white women elevator operator?not yet included them in the curricula. I still shake my head when
  • 19. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 19 Why Black History Today? (Continued from previous page) Before They Die… accompanies The Help (2010) and Red Tails nent inventions by black inventors like Granville T. Woods or(2011) released in the last two years. Earlier films including Lewis H. Latimer when we learned about Alexander Graham BellRosewood (1997), Something the Lord Made (2004), Proud and Thomas Edison? Why weren’t we taught that African slaves(2004), Tuskegee Airmen (1995), The Buffalo Soldiers (1992), built the capital? Why was there no mention of the African pres-Glory (1990), Panther (1995) and From These Roots (1974) il- ence in European history?lustrate movies and documentaries that inform us of historicalevents textbooks may have overlooked or books many never read. It is a sad commentary that in the second decade of the 21st century, progress of an even playing field of equal access and theThe bottom line is that it is not America’s responsibility alone todecide whether our history is important or relevant enough to presentation of history is still unequal. Yes, the information isinclude in textbooks or school curricula, taught or celebrated. accessible by book, database and computer, but the books onThere is an African proverb that says, “Until lions have their ownWorld and American history have not been re-edited to presenthistorians, tales of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.” As an inclusive history, with all of its chapters, the good and the bad,Richard Rubin states in the third edition of his library science his-story and our-story as it happened from the beginning. Itextbook, Foundations of Library and Information Science, remember a question by an Asian classmate in our 1983 under-“History is shaped most often by the victors and the historical grad black history class. “Why are you just learning this? Thisinterpretation varies by the position of the teller…” (pg. 58). was in our high school world history class.” Unfortunately not much has changed since that 2006 article! Until change occurs, Today, most schools have a multicultural student body. Often Black History Month is as necessary now as it was in 1926 whenadministrators conveniently use the smoke screen of Dr. Woodson started it in Dunbar High School in Washington,“Multiculturalism and Diversity” to not host Black History Month D.C.or Latino Heritage Month programs. One administrator told me,“If we have a Black History Month program then we should have “History is a clock that tells a people their historical time of for White History as well.” My response was, “You already It is a compass that people use to locate themselves on the mapdo, with world history beginning in Europe instead of Africa, and of human geography. A people’s history tells a people whereby excluding Black history from your American history curricula, they have been and what they have been, where they are andfor the most part all we’ve learned has been white history since what they are. More importantly, a proper understanding offirst grade. And even some of that isn’t accurate.” Why didn’t history tells a people what the still must be and where they stillwe learn George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were slave must go…” Dr. John Henrik Clarke. (Notes for An African Worldholders while learning how they founded an American democ- Revolution Africans at the Crossroads, pg. 342)ratic government? Why didn’t we learn about the many promi- Jefferson to be Appointed Member, National Historical Publications and Records CommissionFrom: Whitehouse.govKaren L. Jefferson is the Records Manager at theRobert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta UniversityCenter. She has over 35 years of experience as an ar-chivist working at Howard University, Duke Univer-sity, and the National Endowment for the Humani-ties. Ms. Jefferson is an active member and Fellow ofthe Society of American Archivists and a foundingmember of the Academy of Certified Archi-vists. Ms. Jefferson received a B.A. in Historyfrom Howard University and an M.S. in LibraryScience from Clark Atlanta University.
  • 20. Page 20 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 DEBORAH R. HARRIS OF CHARLESTON CO. (SC) PUBLIC WINS 2011 S.C. OUTSTANDING LIBRARIAN OF THE YEAR AWARD Deborah Rollerson Harris, employed with the Charleston trative approval to create an area with job and career related re-County Public Library as the Branch Manager for the Otranto sources, dedicated computers for job searches. The Center alsoRoad Regional Library was named recently the Outstanding Li- offers fax and scanner services. Since the Center opened, the com-brarian of the Year by the South Carolina Library Association puters in this area have been used nearly 2400 times, the fax ser-(SCLA). The Outstanding Librarian of the Year Award is pre- vice used more about 300 times, and the scanner nearly 400sented each year to a librarian who has initiated or developed an times. The fifteen other available computers with Internet accessimaginative or creative pro- at the Otranto Branch have hadgram, service, or work of more than 35,000 uses for theenduring value, for the ef- year.fective use of or increased Harris was surprised, but honoredinterest in libraries or a to be librarian of the year. Sheparticular library. said she is humbled because she is Harris was nominated being recognized for doing whatfor this honor by the entire she loves. “I am fortunate to havestaff of her branch. In their such an outstanding staff. Theynomination, the staff are the ones who make it happen.”praised her as an The Award was presented to her“exemplary, compassionate, at the annual South Carolina Li-and visionary leader”, who brary Association Conference heldinspires them to excel. They at the North Charleston Conven-praised her communication tion Center by Rayburne J.and organizational skills, Turner, Immediate Past SCLAher leadership and commit- President, and Reference Servicesment to the community. Manager at the Otranto Road Re- The nomination high- gional Library. Turner stated thatlighted her efforts as a “Harris’ demeanor exemplifiesbranch manager, she is the professionalism, precision, orderlongest serving branch and accuracy. She has a willing-manager of one of the four ness to go the extra mile for heroriginal Regional facilities branch, the success of area librar-that opened in 1992, her ability to oversee the branch’s renovation ies, and the Charleston County Public Library System as a whole. Iin 2007, her efforts as a professional mentor to new branch man- proudly introduced my mentor as the recipient of this prestigiousagers, and her role on numerous community and library commit- award.” Turner was the 2007 recipient of the Outstanding Librar-tees. One key highlight was Harris’ leadership, with the help of ian Award.her staff to open the only Employment and Career Center within a Doug Henderson, Executive Director for Charleston Countybranch library in South Carolina. The Center opened in February Public Library said the highlight of the conference was the an-after recognizing the branch was facing an increased demand nouncement that Otranto Road Regional Manager Deborah Har-from job-seeking customers. Harris was able to obtain adminis- ris was selected as S. C. Outstanding Librarian of the Year. We’re This edition of the BCALA newsletter was made possible in part by: Website: Email Address: Telephone: 1-815-267-7828 Please support our sponsors!!
  • 21. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 21 BCALA SPONSORED EMERGING LEADERS ATTEND MIDWINTER The 2012 Class of the American Library Association (ALA) Project LEmerging Leaders (EL) convened for a full day of activities dur-ing ALA Midwinter 2012 held in Dallas, TX. EL is a twelve- This project was part of a multi-year initiative and involvedmonth program where selected participants with a wide range of new strategies for Library Leadership and Management Associa-skills and positions acquire hands on experience in project man- tion (LLAMA), a division of the ALA, student recruitment andagement, leadership development, networking and more. In greater collaboration with library and information science (LIS)groups, EL participants work face to face and virtually to com- schools. Angiah Davis, Reference Librarian at the Atlanta Uni-plete their assigned project. BCALA provided $2,000 to sponsor versity Center Robert W. Woodruff Library will work on this pro-two participants to attend ALA Midwinter and Annual. ject with team members: Kristin J. Henrich, Assistant Professor, Reference and Instruction Librarian, University of Idaho, Sherry The EL morning began with breakfast, group introductions, Machones, Library Director, Edgerton Public Library, Willieand sessions on intentional leadership and creating successful Miller, Assistant Librarian, Indiana University-Purdue Universityprojects. Participants discussed their leadership ability and the Indianapolis and Laksamee Putnam, Research and Instructioncircumstances surrounding this leadership opportunity to allow Librarian/Science Librarian, Towson to be successful. Some of the responses included communi-cation plans, clear objectives, and a support system. Benefits of ALA Emerging Leaders There were many highlights of the day such as meeting project If you’re interested in becoming an ALA Emerging Leader,mentors over lunch, fun group photo, leadership reflection, and check out our 10 Reasons to attend ALA Emerging Leaders Pro-talks from ALA Leadership such as the Association of College and gram below:Research Libraries (ACRL), ALA Chapter Councilors, and ALANew Members Roundtable (NMRT). Another highlight of the EL Learn more about ALA’s organizational structureday might have been the project team exercise where groups were Explore ALA divisions, roundtables, etc.instructed to create secure, tall, tower-like objects with straws Meet ALA officers, movers and shakers, etc.using only the materials supplied which included two types of Develop presentation skillspush pins. Teams had 10 minutes to plan without touching anyof the materials then 20 minutes to construct the object. This Enhance leadership skillsexercise taught the teams how to communicate, collaborate, and Collaborate with peerscreate as well as allowed the teams to connect and form that Networkneeded network of support. Project Management That evening EL participants were invited to join ALA Presi- Build Resumedent Molly Raphael and President-elect Maureen Sullivan at re- Keep up with current and emerging trendsception in the Omni Dallas Hotel. Participants mixed and min-gled amoung themselves and ALA leadership. The Emerging Leaders posters presentations will be held on Fri- day, June 22nd at ALA Annual in Anaheim, CA. For more infor-Emerging Leader Projects mation about the ALA Emerging Leaders Program, visit this link: I emergingleaders. This projects works with the International Relations Roundta-ble (IRRT) Advisory Award Committee on the ALA PresidentialCitation for Innovative International Library Projects which as- left: Photo ofsists ALA presidents with the nomination, selection, and award- straw tower ating of three Citations each year. The Emerging Leader Team of 2012 ALAEdward Bodewes, Head of Circulation, River Forest Public Li- Emerging Leadersbrary, Melissa Chiavaroli, Adult Services Librarian, Seekonk Pub-lic Library, Amanda Click, Doctoral Student, University of North program.Carolina, Valeria Gallo Stampino, Librarian, Vancouver PublicLibrary, Karen Holt, Communications Librarian, University of Article submittedTexas at Austin and Derek Mosley, Archivist and Assistant Direc- by Angiah Davistor, Ernest J. Gaines Center, University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Derek Mosleyare tasked with creating a sustainable promotion plan to increasevisibility of the nomination process and the Citation recipients,with particular attention to promotion channels that are not di-rectly managed by IRRT.
  • 22. Page 22 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 EJ JOSEY SCHOLARSHIP WINNING ESSAY: JAMEKA LEWIS Social networking sites can be defined as web-based ser- of the mouse for an identity thief to have access to a user’s name,vices that allow individuals to (1) construct a public or semi- birth date, address and/or general location. Many times, when apublic profile within a bounded system, (2) articulate a list of user clicks on these advertisements, their personal information isother users with whom they share a connection, and (3) view and automatically entered into forms that appear on the advertisedtraverse their list of connections and those made by others within company’s website. So if a user forgets to close that website or logthe system (Boyd & Ellison 211). In short, social networking sites out of their social media profile, their information is now madeare platforms for users to share their experiences, whether per- available to anyone who may use the computer after they leave.sonal or professional. With this sharing of personal experiences The annual losses as a result of identity ‘theft’ in theand information comes risks and dangers that users must be in- United States since 2003 are estimated at $50 billion (Jaquet-formed of and educated on by information professionals. Chiffelle et al. 1). We can combat the likelihood of the theft of the We’re living in an era where identity theft is at an all- personal information of our patrons, friends and communitytime high; many identity theft tools, such as phishing scams, can members by discussing how their information can be stolen. Inbe attributed to the exposing of personal information, often on addition, we can inform users about taking advantage of the pri-these social networking sites. As information professionals, it is vacy controls that social media sites may offer. However, manyour duty to inform and educate our patrons on both the benefits times the privacy settings of these sites are confusing to noviceof social networking and the precautions that should be taken users and the settings change often. By keeping ourselves abreastwhen using these sites. of the changes and procedures of privacy settings and controls According to a 2010 study on the use of Twitter (a popu- and informing our patrons and others of these changes, we canlar social media site), Smith & Rainie reveal that minority Internet help decrease the chance that someone will be a victim of personalusers are more than twice as likely to use Twitter as are white information infringement and theft.internet users (4). In addition, the study found that urban resi- Online Reputation and Online Identitydents are roughly twice as likely to use Twitter as rural dwellers A second major issue found with the large availability ofand that women and the college-educated are also slightly more personal information available on social networking sites is thelikely than average to use the service (Smith & Rainie 4). With development of an “online reputation” or “online identity”. WithAfrican American usage of social media sites increasing, it is im- people sharing so much personal information on public sites, it isportant that we as information professionals ensure that our users easy for an employer or other professional to find someone’s pro-are educated about the purpose and dangers of using social me- file and thus form their opinions about that person. The posting ofdia. inappropriate (or what some deem inappropriate) personal infor- This essay will discuss several ways that we can inform mation (especially pictures) online has been detrimental to theour users and others in our community about social networking; careers of several professionals. For example, several teachersinforming people on the basic purposes (and dangers) of social have been reprimanded or fired because of the personal experi-networking, using our own personal social profiles as educational ences or feelings they have shared on their blogs and other socialplatforms and developing awareness campaigns are all ways that media sites. We must educate patrons on how to maintain a posi-we can teach our patrons and others in the community about us- tive online social media safely. Our patrons should be informed that not everything is meant to be online; once something is on the Internet, it is thereSocial Media Sites: Large Databases of Personal Infor- forever; even if that person believes they have deleted the com-mation ment/picture/blog, someone somewhere has seen it and may have Combating Identity Theft copied what they saw and saved it for future use. Employers, pri- vate and elite school admissions departments and others are in- The basic premise behind social networking sites is the creasingly using social media sites in their background checks forexchange of personal information and experiences. Sites like potential employers and recruits. In just a few short years, em-Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn may have different tools and ployers have gone well beyond just Googling job applicants tolooks, but all of the sites share the basic purpose of information learn more about their prospective employees than what is re-exchange. While Facebook may be used for more personal use vealed in résumés or job interviews. Employers are able, either on(although business and professional use is on the rise due to ad- their own or with the aid of specialized services, to mine a broadvertisements and business profiles) and LinkedIn tends to focus array of personal data from online social network sites (Spragueon professional networking, both of these sites have the same 3). We should inform our customers, friends and communitygoal: to provide a place where people can reveal things about members of the importance of developing a positive online repu-themselves. tation. We can do this by offering suggestions as to what to post One major issue that arises from this large amount of and what not to post and by using our own profiles as examples ofinformation that is exchanged is that it makes the user vulnerable developing and maintaining good online identity and people who want to steal the personal information of the usersof the sites. Several social media sites contain advertisements thatare based on the user’s browsing histories. These sites track and Information Professionals: Examples of Using Socialstore information about what their users look for/at and “like”, Media Responsiblyand thus display advertisements that users can see on their pro- In addition to educating others on the premise and dan-files. The problem with this is that many of these advertisements gers of social media, information professionals can use their owncan appear to be legitimate, thus making the user believe that personal social media sites as examples for others to follow. Inwhat is being advertised is safe. However, all it takes is one click short, we should be the example of safely and efficiently using social media. We can do this by posting articles and discussions
  • 23. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 23 JAMEKA LEWIS (CONTINUED)about how people can use their privacy settings and encouraging the community. Librarians can teach patrons and communitypeople to develop and maintain positive online identities. This members that all social networking is not negative; teaching peo-does not mean that our own sites should be without our own per- ple how to positively use the advantage of having access to a largesonal flair; it is possible to post personal experiences online amount of information is also key when educating people aboutsafely, all while being a good example of using social media for social networking.your benefit and not detriment. As information professionals, we With the increasing usage of social media in the Africanshould yearn to educate people in various arenas; why not use American community, it is the duty of information professionalsour own sites as platforms to educate our friends and contacts to educate those in our communities on using these sites safely,about using social media? The information may be better re- carefully and responsibly. Although the presence of privacy con-ceived from us as an information professional and friend/ trols exists, many of these controls can be confusing to users,associate, versus through a static educational medium. especially those who are new to the respective social media site. Information professionals and specialized librarians However, librarians can serve as interpreters to users, helpingpromote continuous learning and knowledge sharing through them to understand the importance of online identity as well asinnovative technology and education practices (Lachance 1). This the privacy implications (Ovadia 299). By using our expertise andcontinuous learning can extend to the professional’s personal education to help those in our communities, we can act as buffersprofiles and social networking practices. We should want to help and help prevent our community members from becoming vic-our social media contacts browse and use social media responsi- tims of identity theft, and negative online representation andbly; we can do this by offering tips and advice for responsible reputation, all while promoting continuous and creative educa-browsing on our own sites, blogs and profiles. tion techniques. Utilizing our own profiles as examples of good social networking is an example of creatively educating those onDeveloping a Social Networking Awareness Campaign our friends’ lists; this kind of creative exposure and marketing is Lastly, information professionals should develop mar- needed in order to combat the increase of negative social net-keting and advertising campaigns that educate users on social working and increase the awareness of the positive aspects ofnetworking. As information professionals, we often educate our social media, such as using the sites for marketing and advertis-patrons on using the Internet safely; this education should in- ing for businesses, or for personal/career development of indi-clude social networking in the list of Internet tools to use respon- viduals. A mixture of education and leading by example will pro-sibly. Although we can use more formal means of assisting mem- vide members of our communities with the tools that they needbers of our community with using social media, we should ex- in order to enjoy their social networking experiences.plore other creative options outside of classroom teaching. Work-ing with local information technology professionals, we can de- Works Citedvelop marketing materials that offer tips, advice and warnings Boyd, Danah M. and Ellison, Nicole B. “Social Network Sites:about the pitfalls and dangers of using social networking sites Definition, History, and Scholarship.” Journal of Com-irresponsibly. puter-Mediated Communication 13.1 (2007): 210-230. With the rise in the use of social media, a social media campaign should be included in the library’s marketingand publicity plan. Since these plans are tailored to meet the Jaquet-Chiffelle , David-Olivier, et al. "A Typology Of Identity-needs of the community, the increasing need for social media Related Crime." Information, Communication & Soci-safety should be addressed through flyers, brochures, postings on ety 12.1 (2009): 1-24. Academic Search Complete. Web.the library’s website and social media profiles and word of 15 Dec. 2011.mouth. A librarian or other information professional can simplymention a component of using these sites safely while helping a Lachance, Janice R. “The Role of Information Professionals inpatron troubleshoot an issue that they may be having with one of the Digital Age: Improving the Visibility of Informationthese sites. Libraries should also use their own Twitter, Facebook Professionals.” Special Libraries Association,and other social media accounts to post advice on using these 13 April 2009. Web. 14 Dec. 2011.sites carefully. Included in the marketing materials should beadvice on several issues that arise from the use of social media, Ovadia, Steven. "The Trouble With Logins: The Challenges Ofincluding privacy, online identity, cyberbullying and using social Online Identity." Behavioral & Social Sciences Librar-media for professional networking. Developing a campaign out- ian 29.4 (2010): 296-300. Academic Search Complete.side of formalized instruction is likely to reach more users; mate- Web. 15 Dec. 2011.rials should feature the use of African Americans in the picturesand catchy wording to attract the attention of patrons. This will Smith, Aaron and Rainie, Lee. “8% of Online Americans Usemake the materials relatable to those in our communities and Twitter.” Pew Internet and American Life Project. Pewmake them more likely to take heed of the information that is Research Center, 9 December 2010. Web. 13 Dec. 2011.presented. Marketing materials can also be developed to assist pa- Sprague, Robert. "Invasion Of The Social Networks: Blurring Thetrons with the more positive aspects of using social media. Topics Line Between Personal Life And The Employment Rela-such as how to create a positive social media profile can be dis- tionship." University Of Louisville Law Review 50.1cussed; this will help users develop a positive online identity that (2011): 1-34. Academic Search Complete. Web. 15 Dec.employers will not question when researching a particular appli- 2011.cant. In addition, campaigns that help businesses use social me-dia for exposure can be developed and shared with members of
  • 24. Page 24 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 EJ JOSEY SCHOLARSHIP WINNING ESSAY: kYmberly KEETON There are many ways that African Americans can gain is by creating workshops by skill levels and encouraging participa-access to technology and use it for education, advocacy, personal, tion in free classes. These workshops could emphasize the impor-and entrepreneurial purposes. However, in the 21st century Afri- tance of privacy laws, intellectual freedom, and censorship rightscan Americans are lagging in many areas in regard to Web 2.0 that patrons have when engaging themselves within the librarytools that can help them further their knowledge and concepts of system. In like manner, librarians would have an opportunity toaccessing information and utilizing technology for their benefit. emphasize the importance of personal privacy online as a semi-In 2010, Hajj Fleming posed an important question, in Black En- nar. Above all else, libraries can venture out in to their own com-terprise Magazine, “The Digital Divide: Are African American’s munities and take the library to them. It is happening in Houston,Being Left Behind” (Flemings)? In order for the culture to survive Texas. The Houston Public Library created four (as of now) HPLin the digital technological revolution, they will have to grasp an Express mobile library stations to help bridge the digital divideunderstanding of technology as it pertains to this era. Equally and provide library services to all individuals. It is a model thatimportant, African American librarians can be of assistance to African American librarians can take upon themselves personallycommunity patrons by teaching them the necessary skills needed as well. A library express station can be created within a culturalto be engaged with/in the digital age. A partnership should be or community center and ran by a librarian.formed between African American librarians, cultural, and com- Many in the profession of librarianship continue to pon-munity centers to create library express stations to initiate ser- der about the existence of the field in the 21st century. In like man-vices for information literacy. ner, African American librarians should come out of their shells In the United States, there are 150,000 librarians, and of and let people know they exist in the community. Lorri Mon &that percentage there are not many African American librarians Lydia Eato Harris acknowledges in the journal essay, The Deathemployed in the profession. With limited resources, library clos- of the Anonymous Librarian that all too often, librarians areings, and the lack of diversity in the field it is going to be challeng- posed as professionals with no identity. They express this by say-ing to educate urban communities about the benefits of the li- ing, “It is hard to be valued when you are unknown. An importantbrary. Yet and still, every African American librarian has to lead aspect of expertise is being identifiable and known as an expert inby example when speaking about his or her expertise in the field a particular area.” (Mon Lorri 352). Being of service to the com-of librarianship and performing it. This means, that if they are to munity as librarians inside library express stations would be anbe a help to the black community, they themselves have to use asset to the profession. A library express station would proposetechnology. that a librarian either work in a community center, or cultural I personally did a search on black librarian blogs. After center. They would have the option to train staff or implement thenot finding many online, I then decided to create my own entitled,, to document my own ● Create a database of community resources and create aexperience as a graduate student. This is one of the features of community library literary database.Web 2.0, popularized at the turn of the century by Tim O’ Reilly, ● Help patrons learn how to navigate the internet [by settingfounder of O’Reilly Media. Web 2.0 equals a new freedom for Af- up a computer with software to teach this information orrican American librarians and the community to engage in a new it can be done manually] or a particular online site inform of information sharing--online. With this in mind, if the question.African American community does not understand the facets of ● Guide patrons on how to look for a book—on their city li-Web 2.0 which consists of the following: social networking, email, brary online website.blogging, tagging, syndication, RSS feeds and building personal ● Inform patrons of the benefits of obtaining a library card +online libraries (and how to create/access them), they will be left different resources that are available to them includingbehind. Information is the first step in taking ownership of knowl- internet trainings, community events, and re-edge and this can be expressed to the community as a concept. sume/educational workshops—at their local library. Richard E. Rubin says in Foundations of Library and ● Be a community resource guide by informing patrons ofInformation Science that intelligence (information) consists of social resources that include city department of humanthree concepts including, “…data, information, and knowl- services, employment opportunities, shelters, foodedge” (Richard 286). These three elements play a major role when banks, educational systems and public transportationusing technology and teaching others about its manifestation via Every facet of Web 2.0, the current wave of engaging on The Pew Foundation reported in 2010 that African Ameri-the internet, has a unique way of disseminating information. We- cans significantly moved up the technology ladder by 51%, outpac-bopedia, an online technology site, describes Web 2.0 as, “… [the] ing whites in using social media networking online through Twit-second generation of the World Wide Web that is focused on the ter and Facebook (Aaron 2011). However, out of that percentage,ability for people to collaborate and share information the study that was completed only surveyed minority adults. Thatonline” (Web 2.0). Here is an example of how a Web 2.0 tool: If a leaves a significant amount of the cultural demographic that doespatron wanted to use LinkedIn to apply for a job, they would have not include the youth. The article also suggests that typically Afri-to provide contact/career history in order to have a complete can American adults own laptops versus desktop computersscore and to obtain sight recognition by potential employers. Most (Aaron 2011). With that being said, the black community is notAfrican Americans are behind with using this career website and utilizing technology to their benefit, nor or they exposing theirstill need help with learning how to upload a resume to a job em- children (or seniors) to the educational tools that can be used toployment site. African Americans should not shy away from tech- help improve their grades, literacy, and social communicationnology, but embrace it. skills through this dynamic. (continued on page 25) The first steps in librarians teaching information literacy
  • 25. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 25 Keeton (continued) In library express stations librarians would have the oppor- kYmberly Keeton is a graduate student at Texas Woman’s tunity to share and engage community patrons about what is University’s Library Science and Information Technology pro- going on in the library, how the system can help them, and the gram. latest on information literacy. Through this partnership, patrons would go inside their community centers and cultural centers References and have the opportunity to engage with librarians personally too. For example, librarians could schedule one-on-one 45- Aaron, Smith. "Technology Trends Among People of minute resume workshops, 30-minute tutoring sessions, or re- Color." 2011. Pew Internet & American Life Project. 9 December search workshops. Not only would these types of services be 2011 beneficial to the community, it would also continue the African American legacy of a village raising a single child. African Flemings, Hajj. "The Digital Divide: Are African Ameri- American people were not allowed in to libraries until the late cans Being Left Behind." 2011. 9 Decem- 60s, and if mathematics is right, that means the community has ber 2011 a long way to go in regard to being educated about technology and literacy. This essay by no means is stating that African-Americas are Johnson, Marilyn. This Book is OVERDUE! How Li- not aware of technology, but that there is a dire need for them to brarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All. New York: Harper jump on the band wagon, enter it…have access to it…and master Collins Publishers, 2010. it. African American librarians have the opportunity to educate their community by providing them with the necessary skills to Mon Lorri, Harris Eato Lydia. "The Death of the engage with the digital world through information sharing, util- Anonymous Librarian." The Reference Librarian (2011): 352. izing library express stations, using tutorial in their institutions, and by creating more unique ideas. Marilyn Johnson, in the Richard, Rubin E. Foundations of Library and Infor- literary work, This Book Is OVERDUE! How Librarians and mation Science. 3. New York: Neal-Schuman Publishers, Inc., Cybrarians Can Save us All, she declares that all librarians are 2010. knowledgeable and possesses the necessary skills to teach oth- ers. The author says, “Good librarians are natural intelligence Web 2.0. 2011. QuinStreet Inc. 9 December 2011 operatives” (Johnson 6). For this reason, it is imperative that < African American librarians go inside their communities and t_0.html>. educate the masses about Web 2.0 tools and information liter- acy for their survival in the digital age. Save the Date: August 8-12, 2013!!!!!
  • 26. Page 26 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 BCALA 40TH ANNIVERSARY ESSAY: KAREN CARTERStanding Together, Moving Forward: African Americans’ The safety of online information sharing is a growing Digital Literacy and the Future issue (Eshet-Alkalai 102) and information professionals can be leaders in teaching awareness of privacy issues around Internet Facebook. Twitter. BlackPlanet. LinkedIn. Bebo. Four- use. Reinforcing the fact that personal information shared on theSquare. Google Plus. Tumblr. Websites, listservs and blogs for Internet is available to everyone, from potential employers to per-business, community, relationships, entertainment, philanthropy, sons of criminal intent, can foster greater responsibility on theand education. The social network universe seems to grow wider part of users.every day, as does the participation of African Americans in it. Butunderstanding how social networking and other digital tools are The information explosion makes this a time like nobeing used within our community and engaging in dialogue on other, with opportunities to change lives right at our these tools can be maximized to move the community for- Information professionals’ spectrum of competencies preparesward is critical to success in the 21st century. Information profes- them to provide direct search services, offer training on digitalsionals can shepherd this dialogue, serve as leaders in training on tools and information literacy, and serve as intermediaries be-the effective use of these myriad digital resources, and offer criti- tween users and disseminators of information. Librarianship is acal support in the effort to expand technology access to all. noble profession of service and now, more than ever, our informa- tion-rich landscape requires information professionals to be criti- African Americans are more likely than their white coun- cal players in the development of a digitally literate and responsi-terparts to use social networking sites on a daily basis and, be- ble citizenry.yond sharing news via tweets and status updates, they use socialnetworking in a broader variety of ways, including making chari- Karen Carter is a first-year masters student in the Rut-table donations and keeping abreast of neighborhood activities gers University Library and Information Science program. She(Smith 3). However, the world of online communication provides has an interest in archives and digital libraries.a ground for much more than just connecting with friends, find-ing means of entertainment, or making financial transactions. ReferencesOpportunities to uncover business and employment opportuni-ties, to develop stronger communities through civic engagement, Clark, Larra, and Visser, Marijke. “Digital Literacy Takes Centerto access community services, to aid one’s health, and to obtain Stage.” Library Technology Reports, 47.6 (2011): 38. Print.critical education and job training also prevail across the sociallynetworked landscape. To maximize these opportunities requires Eshet-Alkalai, Yoram. “Digital Literacy: A Conceptual Frameworkparticular digital literacy skills--skills in effectively finding infor- for Survival Skills in the Digital Era.” Journal of Educationalmation, evaluating its content, and using and sharing it appropri- Multimedia and Hypermedia, 13.1 (2004): 93. Print.ately (Murray 40). Mortimore, Jeffrey M., and Wall, Amanda. “Motivating African- Information professionals can and should play a critical American Students Through Information Literacy Instruction:role in equipping community members with the knowledge and Exploring the Link Between Encouragement and Academic Self-skills to maximize the use of digital tools. One of the most funda- Concept.” The Reference Librarian, 50.1 (2009): 29. Print.mental ways is by providing direct searching services and instruc-tion, whether in public libraries, schools, community centers or Murray, Janet. “Implement Comprehensive Information Literacy:organizational settings, to individuals seeking to locate online Information-Seeking Strategies.” Library Media Connection, 30.2content that can enhance their lives. In addition to direct service, (2011): 40. Print.information professionals can partner with and support busi-nesses and community organizations that touch a wide range of Pinkett, Randal. “Bridging the Digital Divide: Sociocultural Con-demographic groups – from digital natives to new technology structionism and an Asset-Based Approach to Community Tech-users, from lower income populations to entrepreneurs. In work- nology and Community Building.” 81st Annual Meeting of theing with those for those new tech users, information professionals American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA,can do much to make the world of social networking less intimi- April 24-28, 2000., teaching individuals how to effectively navigate an infor-mation deluge to find what they need without succumbing to in- Smith, Aaron. “Mobile Access 2010.” Pew Internet and Americanformation overload. Beyond this, a critical offering is also to teach Life Project. July 2010.users how to make good evaluative judgment about the validityand accuracy of online content. Talbert, Marcia Wade. “A Peek into African American Tech Us- age.” Black Enterprise, 42.1 (2011): 35. Print. Strength of community is a core value in the AfricanAmerican experience and emphasizing ways that true communitybuilding can be fostered through social networking and technol-ogy is another way that information professionals can be particu-larly influential (Pinkett 6). Leaders in our profession can alsoembody an enthusiasm about the possibilities for both individualand community prosperity that exist via skillful use of social net-working.
  • 27. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 27BCALA LITERARY AWARDS 2012 WINNERS ANNOUNCED!! Submitted by Gladys Smiley-Bell and the Liter- ary Awards Committee unknown truths about a mostly neglected trailblazing star. The BCALA announces the winners of the 2012 BCALA Lit- twentieth century was a turbulent era for African Americans but erary Awards during the Midwinter Meeting of the American somehow Waters personified a triumvirate of song, stage, and Library Association in Dallas, TX. The awards recognize excel- screen. Waters, with her bold audacity and unwavering talent, lence in adult fiction and nonfiction by African American authors blazed the way for many stars including Lena Horne, Josephine published in 2011, including an award for Best Poetry and a cita- Baker, and Dorothy Dandridge. Bogle’s elegant and detailed writ- tion for Outstanding Contribution to Publishing. The recipients ing reads like a novel transporting the reader to a glorious era will receive the awards during the 2012 Annual Conference of the and revealing a compelling story. Donald Bogle teaches at New American Library Association in Anaheim, CA. York University, Tisch School of the Arts and at the University of In the Fiction category BCALA recognizes two Honor Pennsylvania. Books: Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones (Algonquin) and The The BCALA Literary Awards Committee presents the Taste of Salt by Martha Southgate (Algonquin). Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Citation to Teenie Har- Silver Sparrow tells the complicated story of two sisters ris, Photographer: Image, Memory, History by Cheryl Finley, unwittingly united by bigamy. Narrated by both women through Laurence Glasco, and Joe W. Trotter (University of Pittsburgh dramatic dialogue this gripping novel tells each daughter’s story Press). as they struggle with similar issues of self-acceptance and iden- Charles “Teenie” Harris was a photographer for The tity. Tayari Jones is an Associate Professor in the MFA program Pittsburgh Courier, one of the oldest and most prestigious Black at Rutgers-Newark University. newspapers in the United States. Before his forty year career In The Taste of Salt, Martha Southgate fearlessly ex- with the Courier and well after, Harris captured more plores the often taboo subject of addiction. Through the candid than80,000 images that depict the intimate and progressive life voices of the story’s main characters, she tells a hauntingly com- of African Americans in the Pittsburgh community. The images pelling saga that forces the reader to grapple with the effects of and essays in this historical archive represent a retrospective addiction on individual identities and family bonds. Martha contribution of great importance of Black American history and Southgate lives in Brooklyn, New York. life. Finley is an Assistant Professor of Art at Cornell University. The winner in the Nonfiction category is The Indignant Glasco is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Generation: A Narrative History of African American Writers Pittsburgh and Trotter is a Professor of History and Social Jus- and Critics, 1934-1960 by Lawrence P. Jackson (Princeton Uni- tice at Carnegie Mellon University. versity Press). Honor Books for Nonfiction are: Malcolm X: A The inaugural winner for BCALA’s new category Best Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable (Viking) and Heat Poetry Award is Mule & Pear by Rachel Eliza Griffiths( Western Wave: The Life and Career of Ethel Waters by Donald Bogle Michigan University Press). Honor Books for Poetry are: The (Harper). Armageddon of Funk by Michael Warr (Tia Chucha Press) and The Indignant Generation is a fascinating exploration The New Black by Evie Shockley (Wesleyan University Press). of the development of African American literature after the Har- Rachel Eliza Griffiths’ Mule & Pear amasses literary lem Renaissance to the modern day Civil Rights Movement. Law- characters found on the pages of the works of greats like Alice rence P. Jackson offers readers rare insights into the lives of key Walker, Toni Morrison, and Edward P. Jones. In many ways players who contributed to the breadth of writing that flourished Griffiths composes a moving tribute to the African American between 1934 and 1960.From Zora Neale Hurston and Langston literary canon, particularly resurrecting beloved characters to Hughes to James Baldwin and Lorraine Hansberry, Jackson give them a new poetic chapter. Poet, painter, and photographer highlights the unique challenges faced by the writers during the Rachel Eliza Griffiths teaches creative arts at Sarah Lawrence time of the Great Depression, Jim Crow, World War II and the College and lives in New York. Cold War. Dozens of illustrations and photographs enhance this In The Armageddon of Funk Michael Warr wages his stunning work that celebrates African American artistic and in- own “funky” war using an arsenal of words, ideas, and personal tellectual achievement in writing. Professor Jackson teaches experiences. From his soulful and historicized tribute to the leg- English and African American Studies at Emory University. endary James Brown to his ode to the great Gwendolyn Brooks, Published shortly after the author’s death, and re- this collection traverses the Black experience giving the reader a searched for over a decade, Manning Marable’s Malcolm X poetic soundtrack to Black life. Michael Warr is an award win- paints a candid and insightful portrait of Malcolm X. The work ning poet and arts educator and lives in San Francisco. builds on Malcolm X’s own autobiography and provides a more The New Black by Evie Shockley offers a unique remix complete and detailed portrait of one of the most enigmatic and of history while challenging constructions of identity in the proc- iconic figures of the twentieth century. The book explores Mal- ess. Her use of unusual typography and poetic techniques create colm’s many “re-inventions” from hustler and convict to minister a fresh and necessary conversation that lends itself to explora- and prophet. Manning Marable was a professor of public affairs, tion and understanding within and between generations. Evie history, and African American studies at Columbia University. Shockley is an assistant professor of English at Rutgers In this expansive, meticulously researched and riveting University. biography of Ethel Waters, Heat Wave by Donald Bogle unveils
  • 28. Page 28 BCALA Newsletter, Feb/March 2012 Photos from Newark (NJ) Public!! Opera singer Kevin Maynor (center) is flanked by playwright Richard Wesley and actor Marvin Jefferson at “We Wear the Mask” 2012. Sandra L. West, Joseph Whall and Newark Public Library director Wilma J. Grey stand before a “We Wear the Mask” promotional poster. Poet Sonia Sanchez (second from right) poses with Newark, NJ City Councilman Ras Baraka (second from left) and Newark David Mills, a poet and actor, delivers a poem by Langston Public Library staff. Baraka interviewed Sanchez during a New- Hughes during “We Wear the Mask”. “We Wear the Mask” cele- ark Public Library event. brated Black theater in and near Newark from the 1700s to the present.
  • 29. Volume 39, No. 4 Page 29 Newark Public (continued)Staff and supporters from Newark Public Library pose with renowned authorSister Souljah (third from right) in 2011. Newark Public also sponsored a visitwith well-known poet Sonia Sanchez last year Rutgers professor Dr. Wendell Holbrook addresses the crowd during Newark’s “We Wear the Mask”. Others who participated in the program series in- cluded poet David Mills, theatre guru Clarence Ali, Dr. Linda Caldwell Epps of Seton Hall Uni- versity, playwright Amiri Baraka, theatre producer Woodie King Jr., and others. Newark Public held “Many Voices, One Newark” in November, featur- ing authors influenced by the city. Pictured are (from left to right) Marc C. Little, Benilde Little, Sandra L. West, Moody Holiday, Kal Wagen- heim, Max Rodriguez and Anasa Maat. Photo: Ivy P. Davis Adelaide Sanford Charter School drum orchestra during “We Fredericka Bey, founder of Adelaide Sanford Charter, Wear the Mask”. watches the drum orchestra perform with other spectators.
  • 30. Black Caucus of the American Library Association, Inc.Postmaster Please Return To:Jos N. HolmanCounty LibrarianTippecanoe County Public Library627 South StreetLafayette, IN 47901-1470 About BCALA Call for SubmissionsIn the 1960s, Black people across America, The BCALA Newsletter seeks essays and articlesincluding Black librarians, were seriously about the history of BCALA and Black librarian-concerned about the state of the country and ship. We also seek state news.its survival as a beacon of democracy. Theroots of the Black Caucus extend from that Please contact Jos. N. Holman with questionstumultuous period. Founded in 1970, the about the newsletter. Please send electronic sub-Black Caucus of the American Library missions and photos to serves as an advocate for the Visit our website at:development, promotion, and improvement for guidelines.of library services and resources to thenation’s Black American community; and itprovides leadership for the recruitment andprofessional development of Black Americanlibrarians. BCALA holds business and mem-bership meetings in conjunction with ALAand sponsors its own national conferences.The heading “Black Caucus” was first in-dexed in Library Literature in 1970. Listedunder the heading were six articles: two onsegregation, three on the caucus, and anarticle about the concern for Black Librarians.Today, hundreds of articles can be foundwithin electronic databases and references.