Radical Collections: Re-examining the roots of collections, practices and information professions
Do archivists ‘curate’ history? And to what extent are our librarians the gatekeepers of knowledge?
Libraries and archives have a long and rich history of compiling ‘radical collections’- from Klanwatch Project in the States to the R. D. Laing Archive in Glasgow- but a re-examination of the information professions and all aspects of managing those collections is long overdue.
This book is the result of a critical conference held at Senate House Library in 2017. The conference provided a space to debate the issues and ethics of collection development, management and promotion.
This book brings together some key papers from those proceedings. It shines a light on pressing topical issues within library and information services (LIS)- to encompass selection, appraisal and accession, through to organisation and classification, and including promotion and use. Will libraries survive as victims of neoliberal marketization? Do we have a responsibility to collect and document ‘white hate’ in the era of Trump? And how can a predominantly white (96.7%) LIS workforce effectively collect and tell POC histories?
Introduction: Radical collections and radical voicesJordan Landes
1. Radical or reactionary? James Wilkinson, Cork Public Library and identity in the Irish Free StateMairéad Mooney
2. Beyond the Left: documenting American racism in print periodicals at the Wisconsin Historical Society, and theorising (radical) collections todayAlycia Sellie
3. ‘Mind meddling’: exploring drugs and radical psychiatry in archivesLucas Richert
4. Cataloguing the radical material: an experience requiring a flexible approachJulio Cazzasa
5. Decentring qualification: a radical examination of archival employment possibilitiesHannah Henthorn and Kirsty Fife
6. Enabling or envisioning politics of possibility? Examining the radical potential of academic librariesKatherine Quinn