Bcala newsletter mar2012pdf2


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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; and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians.

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Bcala newsletter mar2012pdf2

  1. 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. 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: gladys.bell@hamptonu.edu(502) 852-2705 (voice mail) Carolyn Neal Lavonda Broadnax(502) 852-8736 fax Library of Congress 2303 Allison Rd.E-mail: fmcox@louisville.edu 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: lbor@loc.gov Fundraising(405) 606-3729 voice mail(405) 606-3722 fax Conference Treasurer Iris L. HanneyE-mail: ddavis@metrolibrary.org 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: treasurer@bcala.org 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: kantoniow@yahoo.com 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: jcobb@nlc.edu Email: eguss@uic.edu 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: joshpa@rcn.com 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: sford@memphis.edu 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 23803-4007nealc@u.library.arizona.edu 2600 Garland Voice: (804) 524-6946 Detroit, MI 48214 Fax: (804) 524-5482 Voice: (313) 642-4801, ext.109 Email: mcwalker@vsu.edu Fax: (313) 642-4802 Email: krlemmons@att.net (continued on Page 3)
  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: mpmckinney@gmail.com 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: kim.thompson@kentonlibrary.org Fax: (440) 244-4888 Email: jeldridge@lpls.info 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: eboni.stokes@dc.gov Edmon Low Libraryjasonalston@gmail.com 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: amford@uic.edu 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. 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 gladys.bell@hamptonu.edu Proceedings lbor@loc.gov Lavonda Broadnax Exhibits Rudolph Clay rudolphc@wustl.edu Carolyn Neal cvaneal@att.net sford@memphis.edu Evaluations Sylverna Ford Karen Lemmons krlemmons@att.net iris.hanney@unlimitedpriorites.com Fundraising Iris L. Hanney Kevin Watson kantoniow@yahoo.com Job Placement Vivian Bourdeaux vbordeaux@bridgeportpubliclibrary.org Michael Walker mcwalker@vsu.edu Local Michelle McKinney mpmckinney@gmail.com Arrangements Kim Thompson kim.thompson@kentonlibrary.org Logistics Annie Ford amford@uic.edu Jason Alston jasonalston@gmail.com Registration Joanne Eldridge jeldridge@lpls.info Lynne Simpson Harding lynne.simpson@okstate.edu Conference Fannie Cox fmcox@louisville.edu Co-Chairs Denyvetta Davis ddavis@metrolibrary.org
  5. 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. http://zoowiki.blogspot.com).on 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. 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. 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 patients.is 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. 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, http://thehappynappybookseller.blogspot.com/and 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 http://missdomino.blogspot.com/http://thebrownbookshelf.com http://thewarriorlibrarian.blogspot.com/ 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 http://blackteensread2.blogspot.com/http://campbele.wordpress.com/ 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 aboutdigibooklibrarian.wordpress.com 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. 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 (www.jpanafrican.com) 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. 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.: www.lulu.com, 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 www.holdingthedream.org.
  11. 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. 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 © kbethel@northwestern.edu
  13. 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!! jasonalston@gmail.com or BCALA president Jos N. Holman at jholman@tcpl.lib.in.us.
  14. 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. 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. 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: www.avivatravelgroup.com Email Address: avivatravel@aol.com Telephone: 1-815-267-7828