ALA Unit/Subunit: ALA
Meeting Type: Program
Cost: Included with full conference registration.
Our institutions and professional organizations espouse diversity as a virtue and actively look for ways to promote and demonstrate these convictions. But this is not without personal risk and challenge to individuals, groups, and organizations who proactively and vocally engage in this work. This panel addresses a sadly common, but not very discussed, aspect of engaging in work on behalf of equity, diversity, and inclusion -- being targeted for harassment because of one's social justice work. In a time of great divisiveness and hate rhetoric in the U.S., instances of harassment against people from marginalized groups and their allies are ever more prevalent.
The panelists are practitioners, educators, and researchers in academic libraries, archives, and graduate library and information science programs. All participants write and speak frequently on the topics of diversity and social justice in librarianship and archives; participants have written books, maintain blogs, and other websites and platforms designed to educate peers, give them a voice, and combat racism, microaggressions, and other offenses that plague our profession. Panelists will discuss the pressure placed on those working in this area to “brand” themselves as public scholars in light of limited institutional frameworks that support and protect practitioners and researchers from harassment and potential violence. This is particularly problematic for faculty of color, LGBTQ identified, female, and those engaged in critical, anti-racist, queer, and feminist scholarship. Panelists will also discuss their experiences with being targeted by conservative media, having their emails FOIA’ed, being doxxed and harassed online and at their workplaces, raising awareness with administrators, and taking steps to demand institutional reform and support.
This panel will expose and address risks that professionals engaged in critical scholarship face, and suggest actionable interventions and strategies of support and prevention to protect these advocates and enable critical scholarship to thrive. This session will offer suggestions for how administrators, colleagues, and professional organizations might proactively create and implement complementary levels of support and protection for faculty and practitioners prior to incidents of harassment.