Presentation: Brittani Sterling

 

Brittani Sterling (Libraries) presented at the 11th Annual National African American Librarians Conference hosted by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.

First, the panel, "Identity Politics: The Weightiness of Black Womanhood in LIS" used the lens of Kimberle Crenshaw's 1989 definition of the term intersectionality through which to analyze the unique challenges and struggles of Black American women in the field of library and information science.

She also presented "You're Down with IED (Inclusion, Equity and Diversity) ... Yeah You Know Me!" a critique in the vein of the sociological theory of spatial mismatch between the efforts of institutions to address equity, diversity, and inclusion with initiatives and programming against the lived experiences of employee participants. The results of a snowball sample population revealed that most employees feel comfortable having discussions and participating initiatives and programs, but often admit to feeling that they don't believe that the programming provided can or will make a difference or create measurable changes as opposed to theoretical and/or philosophical changes.

Finally, Sterling presented "1,000,001 Rules for Being a Librarian of Color," a hidden rules allegory for navigating large cultural institutions and library types that can assist employees of color in staying sane, holding space for their identities and balancing doing work well with "being well" at work, with an emphasis on leaning into their full selves and identifying situations that may not be acknowledged by majority identity holding colleagues, but are real, valid, and have an effect on day-to-day life.

 

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