Radical Collections: Re-examining the roots of collections, practices and information professions

Edited by Jordan Landes and Richard Espley
Publication date: 
31 January 2019
Number of pages: 
Formats available : 
Available as free PDF download at http://humanities-digital-library.org/index.php/hdl/catalog/book/radical_collections

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?

Table of contents: 
Introduction: Radical collections and radical voices
Jordan Landes
1. Radical or reactionary? James Wilkinson, Cork Public
Library and identity in the Irish Free State
Mairéad Mooney
2. Beyond the Left: documenting American racism in print
periodicals at the Wisconsin Historical Society, and
theorising (radical) collections today
Alycia Sellie
3. ‘Mind meddling’: exploring drugs and radical psychiatry
in archives
Lucas Richert
4. Cataloguing the radical material: an experience requiring
a flexible approach
Julio Cazzasa
5. Decentring qualification: a radical examination of
archival employment possibilities
Hannah Henthorn and Kirsty Fife
6. Enabling or envisioning politics of possibility? Examining
the radical potential of academic libraries
Katherine Quinn