Black History Month 2023: Black Resistance
Liberation is a constant struggle and Black history is a 365, 24/7. It is increasingly necessary to uplift the communities, scholars, and educators who are doing the work to amplify Black histories and counternarratives. The 2023 Black History Month theme, selected by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (founded by Carter G. Woodson, the father of Black History Month) is Black Resistance. In solidarity with ASALAH, the UConn Library will present Disorder in the Night: Narratives of Black Resistance, 1723-2023, an exhibit curated by Stephanie Birch. Disorder of the Night is a celebration and contemplation of the Black radical tradition, inviting audiences to reflect on and reconsider what it means to resist.
The Bell Ringer
The Bell Ringer is the NEW! official blog of the Critical Race Theory Collective (CRTc). Launched in Fall 2022, the blog features scholarly essays written by CRTc members and contributing authors from around the world. We welcome interdisciplinary scholars, LIS professionals, educators, community organizers and activists, and students to submit your work and share your knowledge, experience, and expertise.
The phrase “bell ringer” has multiple connotations — one is to sound the alarm on important news. Our blog is also named in reverence and honor of two Black liberation scholars and path-pavers — Derrick Bell and bell hooks.
Stephanie Birch, UConn Library (Managing Editor)
Dr. Alice Corble, University of Sussex (Associate Editor)
Dr. Tony Dunbar, Dominican University (Assistant Editor)
Thomas Jackson Letters
I was honored to join a project in Fall 2021 that was many years into its development. By the time of my involvement, the papers of Thomas Jackson, an English-born Pennsylvania abolitionist and ropemaker, had already been accessioned, digitized, and fully transcribed by the Library of Congress. A descendant of Jackson, Dr. John Paling, has stewarded this collection of letters for many years. With the desire to make the collection searchable for researchers, educators, and the public, he has been developing a website to host the letters and their transcriptions. I partnered with Dr. Paling to process each item in the collection and generate enhanced, in-depth metadata to maximize discoverability.
Banned Books Behind Bars
Independent research examining policies and practices to ban books and restrict access to information in US prisons and other carceral environments. This work situates book-banning practices and the restriction of information within systems of white supremacy and racial oppression, tying these policies and practices to the history of Black enslavement in the US, geographies of racial terror and violence, and the everpresent school-to-prison pipeline. It further explores the significance of book banning on incarcerated people and how restricting access to information supports the privatized prison industrial complex — not public safety or the public good.
Contact me for inquiries or requests for speaking engagements.
War in Ukraine: Race, Racism, and Racial Identity in the Eastern Bloc
In collaboration with Zach Claybaugh. At the onset of the war, when Ukranians began to seek refuge in neighboring nations, Black and POC Ukranians and immigrants reported racial violence and discrimination. This page explores the conflict between Ukraine and Russia through a racial lens and examines the racial biases in media coverage. It provides sources and resources on Black history and racial identity-making in Eastern Europe. View the LibGuide.
Critical Race Theory Collective
The Critical Race Theory Collective (CRTc) is a community of international, interdisciplinary, and intersectional scholar-activists who are committed to cultivating knowledge and information across borders. Our community develops knowledge justice tools for dismantling white supremacy and oppressive hierarchies as they manifest in spaces of work, education and society. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.
Intellectual Freedom on Lock Down: Book Banning in US Prisons
Intellectual freedom is a right frequently denied to people in carceral systems. Access to information is a form of privilege and, therefore, power. This 2021 Banned Books Week virtual display examines the proliferation of prison book banning in its various forms and highlights a small selection of banned books available in the University of Florida Libraries. Click here to view the virtual display
Digital Collaborations on Black History in Florida
Digital Collaborations on Black History in Florida is a pilot project of the University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries. The project seeks to elevate the position of Black history within the Digital Humanities through community-anchored collaboration. The project culminated in a two-day workshop at the University of Florida in July 2019. View the Final Report
Incarceration + COVID-19 Global News Project
This crowd-sourcing document captures global news information pertaining to incarcerated populations in prisons, jails, and detention centers during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
View the project