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Cornell University Library, Rare and Distinctive Collections (RAD) Hour: When WHITE Libraries Happen to BLACK Rare & Distinctive Collections: Finding Pathways from Marginalization to Narratives of Emp
For academic libraries in the US, escalating racial tensions & social unrest have led to greater consideration of archival decolonization initiatives which emphasize the elevation of Black narratives through increased acquisitions and digital discovery of Black themed rare and distinctive collections. While such diversification methods may provide repositories with opportunities for BIPOC allyship and cultural inclusion, they are also fraught with complexities. This moderated panel discussion will bring together POC leaders in the field of special collections librarianship who will share reflections of their professional and personal contributions toward uncovering marginalized narratives. Each speaker will offer their perspective on formulating a vision for empowering BIPOC collections in predominantly white mainstream academic libraries. Panelists will interrogate issues of how white collecting agendas and well-meaning attempts at decolonization can sometimes reinforce racial hierarchies and impede effective stewardship of BIPOC rare and distinctive collections by creating unintended circumstances of curatorial blackface and alienation of community. Dialogue outcomes include a blueprint for academic libraries to establish the collaborative cross-institutional dialogues necessary to be inclusive of documenting trends in the Black community's interests and needs.

Oct 19, 2020 02:30 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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