LibLearnX

Intellectual Freedom @ LibLearnX

The Intellectual Freedom Round Table, as well as the Office of Intellectual Freedom, are excited for the diverse slate of programs at LibLearnX. A registration link for the conference can be found here (please consider attending!), but the programs we’re most excited for, as you can imagine, deal directly with issues of intellectual freedom.

The Merritt Fund

The Merritt Fund Promotional Toolkit

While book challenges are a perpetual issue within the library world, recent decisions by many school boards to remove supposedly “obscene” titles from their library collections with little justification seems to signal that this is a growing problem that won’t subside anytime soon. It’s with this increasing intolerance in mind—and the accompanying threats to the employment of library staff who might wish to defend intellectual freedom—that this toolkit for the Merritt Fund has been created.

School Library Journal

The School Library Journal’s Survey on Weeding: An Analysis

The School Library Journal’s survey on children’s/YA collection development and weeding, published this past June, paints the picture one would expect: circulation of print materials was down 73%, circulation of ebooks was up 91%, and both public and school libraries decided to purchase more digital materials. However, the report did contain at least one surprising piece of information: a “quarter of respondents…say their weeding criteria have changed over the last few years.” One reason for these changes? A growing “awareness of unconscious racial bias, inclusion and diversity.”

Rainbow Book Month

Pride Month and Censorship: A Resource Guide

In light of recent attacks on the rights of LGTBQIA+ individuals and an increasingly toxic political environment, it’s doubtful that these concerted efforts to censor the speech of others will fade away anytime soon. Furthermore, librarians and their professional commitment to creating learning environments free from censorship almost certainly guarantees that they will face further challenges. Thus, the intention behind this list, even if it’s not entirely successful in communicating the breadth of ALA resources, is to provide a starting point for further exploration of intellectual freedom and the ways in which we, as librarians, can better advocate not only ourselves, but our communities as well.

Denzel Washington

Malcolm X, Military Academies, and Trump’s (Defunct) EO

Should servicemen and women be exposed to material some might deem anti-American? There are two answers to this question: the first, which addresses the specific case of Spike Lee’s Malcolm X, and the second, which appeals to the universal right to free speech usually espoused by those on the political right, but seemingly abandoned in this case.