Jessica Bratt on Let's Talk About Race and the Legacy of Libraries 4 Black Lives

Jessica Bratt on Let's Talk About Race and the Legacy of Libraries 4 Black Lives

In summer 2016, four librarians—Jessica Anne Bratt, Amita Lonial, Sarah Lawton, and Amy Sonnie—created Libraries 4 Black Lives (L4BL), an online space for libraries to support the Movement for Black Lives and develop a support community for advocates doing racial justice work in libraries. While L4BL is no longer active, Bratt, youth services manager at the Grand Rapids Public Library, MI, has continued her advocacy and social justice work. LJ recently caught up with her to find out more about what she’s been doing.

EXPLORE LJ

Reopening Libraries: Public Libraries Keep Their Options Open

Erica Freudenberger, Jun 25, 2020
How do you reopen a library with no guidelines or best practices to work from? That’s the question public leaders and staff are considering as library buildings gradually open across the country.

Make the Right Call | Editorial

Meredith Schwartz, Jul 06, 2020
In many towns across the United States, seeing members of the police in the public library is common-place. Off-duty officers moonlight as library security guards. Library programs like “Coffee with a Cop” aim to help the police develop closer bonds of trust with the community. And police are often called to deal with behavioral issues or threats to patron or staff safety. But as the past weeks of protest after the police killing of George Floyd, among others, make plain, for a substantial portion of patrons and staff, the presence of the police is itself a threat.

Rise of the Monsters: Top Horror Titles and Trends Coming This Season

Becky Spratford, Jul 08, 2020
Horror and dark fiction are trending in a big way. Here are the titles and trends to keep an eye on in the coming months, including a downloadable list of every book mentioned.

ALA’s Virtual Reality | ALA Virtual 2020

LJ Staff, Jul 06, 2020
Held online from June 24–26, ALA Virtual—Community Through Connection saw 7,349 attendees and 651 exhibitors and featured more than 50 sessions, live chats with authors and speakers, more than 75 publisher and exhibitor sessions on new titles, a virtual exhibit floor with more than 600 participating exhibitors, 11 featured speakers, and a Swag-a-Palooza with hundreds of free items.

Alexandra Chassanoff, Apr 12, 2018
During the week of March 19–23 MIT Libraries convened experts from across disciplines and domains to identify and address grand challenges in the scholarly communication and information science landscape.
Mirco Tonin, Jan 03, 2018
Suppose a librarian receives an email from a man named Greg Walsh, wanting to become a cardholder or simply inquiring about the open hours. Would the librarian reply? And, if so, would the reply be polite, including for instance some form of salutation, such as “Hello” or “Good morning”? Does your answer change if the guy is called Tyrone Washington? Is a librarian treating Jake Mueller differently from DeShawn Jackson?
LJ Reviews, Apr 11, 2018
A detailed look at pain management implementing the use of medical cannabis rather than opioids; A complex look at the issue of opioid abuse backed up with research and first hand stories; A valuable addition to the conversation about addiction filled with case studies illustrating the complexities of the disease
Mahnaz Dar, Jan 20, 2018
Editor Sarah Janssen discusses editing The World Almanac in an age where being attuned to "fake news" is especially vital.
Gary Price, Jul 11, 2020
From eMarketer: The vast majority of mobile time is spent while connected to the internet. We estimate that US adults will spend, on average, more than 4 hours with mobile internet, with 88% of that time within apps. The app percentage continues to increase year over year—though our figures may undercount time in embedded mobile […]
Gary Price, Jul 11, 2020
From a New Report by: Mary Lee Kennedy,  Executive Director, Association of Research Libraries Clifford Lynch, Executive Director, Coalition for Networked Information The internet emerged from the research and higher education community and changed the world. Research libraries were right there. Thirty years of strategic investment by research libraries, in partnership with the organizations that […]
Gary Price, Jul 11, 2020
From Plan S: Many possible impacts of Plan S were communicated in the 600 plus responses received as part of the consultation process for the Plan S Implementation Guidance[2]. Various challenges have been identified that need to be monitored and addressed, from disciplinary differences in publication cultures to global inequalities in access and funding for […]
Gary Price, Jul 10, 2020
From Emory University: The Georgia Coast Atlas is a public, online gateway to the dynamic ecosystems and intriguing history of the state’s 100-mile-long coast and barrier islands. Emory University’s Department of Environmental Sciences and the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship launched the ambitious project. It showcases scholarship in science and the humanities, weaving together research, fieldwork and technology to create […]
Erica Freudenberger, Jun 25, 2020
How do you reopen a library with no guidelines or best practices to work from? That’s the question public leaders and staff are considering as library buildings gradually open across the country.

Meredith Schwartz, Jul 01, 2020
With some libraries reopening for at least limited services, and many others doing curbside pickup, face masks are a necessity for library workers and patrons alike. These library- and book-themed offerings can make it fun and show your library love all over your face.

Emily Joy Oomen, Jun 23, 2020
Most public libraries stopped distributing materials during the pandemic to stop the spread of the coronavirus. But that doesn’t mean they stopped distributing anything. Some leveraged their expertise at getting resources into the hands of patrons to help those suddenly struggling with the bare essentials of life: food, diapers, the means to clean up, or a place to sleep.

Gary Price, Jun 22, 2020
IMLS: In the first phase of a project to disseminate and develop science-based information about how materials can be handled to mitigate exposure to staff and visitors, scientists have found that the virus SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 is not detectable on five common library materials after three days.

Neal Wyatt,  Jul 10, 2020
The Orwell Prizes are announced. The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead wins for Political Fiction. In nonfiction it is Kate Clanchy’s Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me. Greyhound and The Old Guard lead a handful of adaptations this week. Kevin Kwan's Sex and Vanity is headed to the movies.

Elisa Shoenberger,  Jul 10, 2020
In late June, Macmillan announced the creation of the Trade Management Committee, which will “set the goals and objectives for the publishers, divisions, and departments that comprise U.S. Trade and Shared Services.” However, the question remains whether this committee and other steps taken by the publisher will result in real change or are a temporary measure to placate criticism.

Liz French,  Jul 10, 2020

The WWR gang at LJ/School Library Journal keep expanding our interior spaces figuratively and literally, with book reading, book weeding, and little TV watching.

Lisa Peet,  Jul 09, 2020
In summer 2016, four librarians—Jessica Anne Bratt, Amita Lonial, Sarah Lawton, and Amy Sonnie—created Libraries 4 Black Lives (L4BL), an online space for libraries to support the Movement for Black Lives and develop a support community for advocates doing racial justice work in libraries. While L4BL is no longer active, Bratt, youth services manager at the Grand Rapids Public Library, MI, has continued her advocacy and social justice work. LJ recently caught up with her to find out more about what she’s been doing.

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.

Get access to 8000+ annual reviews of books, ebooks, and more

As low as $13.50/month