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SALALM 60 (Princeon)
Panel 1: Perspectives on Digital Humanities Scholarship
Moderator: Barbara Alvarez (University of Michigan)
Rapporteur: Cate Kellett (Yale Law School)
Presenters: Aquiles Alencar-Brayner (British Library), Thomas M. Cohen and Joan R. Stahl, (Catholic University of America), Patricia Figueroa (Brown University)
Barbara Alvarez, Librarian for Romance Languages and Literatures & Comparative Literature at the University of Michigan, introduced and moderated the panel of four presenters from three institutions, who focused on projects they participated in involving digital humanities and Latin American collections.
Aquiles Alencar-Brayner, Curator of Latin American Collections at the British Library, presented Digital Scholarship and its Impact on Latin American Studies. He reported on his library’s use of digital humanities to expand access to Latin American resources in innovative and resourceful ways. Due to cuts in funding over the years, the British Library has relied on creativity and ingenuity to reach out to new audiences around the world.
The Endangered Archive Programme (EAP) supports digitization of content in archives around the world that are in danger of disappearing due to lack of funds, poor preservation, or other unfortunate circumstances. The program offers money and expertise, as well as equipment if needed. Mr. Alencar-Brayner noted that there are not many applications from Latin America, so please spread the news and encourage others to apply. While the EAP does provide for digital preservation, he stressed his library’s focus on broadening digital humanities projects extends beyond digitization.
British Library Labs, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is one project that encourages digital scholarship by opening up digital content and data to researchers on a large One million images scanned from books from the British Library were released to Flickr Commons to allow anyone to manipulate them. The partnerships formed between researchers and library experts encourage engagement with users and allow for exciting new experimentation.
Thomas M. Cohen and Joan R. Stahl, both from Catholic University of America, presented Crossing the Digital Divide: A New Direction at the Oliveira Lima Library. Professor Cohen outlined the history of the Oliveira Lima Library (housed at CUA in Washignton, D.C.), which consists of 60,000 books plus manuscripts, ephemera, art, and more covering such topics as Brazilian history, literature, and diplomacy. Mr. Lima was a journalist and avid book collector. His wife Flora actively collaborated with him, which was rare for women to do. He was generous with his collection because he wanted North Americans to learn about “Latin American soul.” As director of the library, Professor Cohen is particularly proud of the library’s art collection, which he hopes will form the basis of a small museum in the future. Do to the small space and lack of funding, for now many pieces are out of sight or on loan.
Ms. Stahl, Director of Research and Instruction at Catholic University, explained the challenges she faces in reaching users interested in the Oliveira Lima Library. Many researchers reside outside D.C., but there is no online public catalog to the collection. They have early descriptions at the collection level, but there is a large backlog of uncatalogued items. There is also no conservation and the lack of physical space makes it difficult to locate items and organize the collection. There is also limited space for researchers to sit within the facility. Faced with all these challenges, she said they decided to partner with Gale to digitize their pamphlet collection. Gale rehoused the pamphlets for archival storage, barcoded them all for inventory and made them accessible online. This type of project would not have been feasible for such a small library without the help of a larger partner.
Patricia Figueroa, Curator of the Iberian and Latin American Collections at Brown University, gave an overview of digital projects at her library. She often collaborates with professors to provide supplementary course materials online. Some of the work included having students provide additional content for companion websites to textbooks. You can find examples at http://library.brown.edu/brasiliana.
Ms. Figueroa described a particularly interesting project called Opening the Archives, which involved the joint effort of Brown, NARA, Unviersidade Estadual de Maringa, and the Brazilian National Archives to digitize and index 100,000 United States government documents on Brazil from 1960-1980. Professor James N. Green wanted to make this material available to people in Brazil who otherwise would not have access to such important information. Brown provided funding to pay students to go to Washington and digitize the documents. Librarians helped with logistics, including metadata standards, digitization standards, project management, and training students on how to carry out such a large-scale project. Ms. Figueroa demonstrated how to access the end product, which was a website in English and Portuguese. There are still edits to be made, more documents to be scanned, and they hope to create a mirror site at the Unviersidade Estadual de Maringa.
Ms. Figueroa also updated the audience on new additions to the Thomas E. Skidmore Collection. Professor Skidmore donated his personal library and papers to Brown in 2006 but more recently added Brazilian portraits to the collection. She noted that descriptions of famous Brazilians depicted in the portraits are often humorous.
During the question period, Jesus Alonso-Regalado, from the University at Albany, asked what it meant to be a curator at the British Library. Mr. Alencar-Brayner replied that the curators at his library are like the glue that bonds everything together. They facilitate access to digital collections by making it usable and relevant to users. They also promote those collections and ask the users themselves to add information to the catalog records.
Janete Saldaha Bach Estevão, from Universidade Federal do Paraná, asked Ms. Figueroa to elaborate on what kind of students helped out with the Opening the Archives project. They were a mix of graduate students in the history department and undergraduates from various majors at Brown who were from all over the United States. Some were of Brazilian descent. They collaborated with two additional students from Brazil to bring the project to researchers and other interested parties there. Shortly after they published an article on the collection in Brazil, there were an additional 10,000 hits to the website.
Michael Scott, from Georgetown, asked if there were other projects in the future at the Oliveira Lima Library. Ms. Stahl answered that they have many ideas, but their plans rely on what Gale prefers to digitize next. Professor Cohen added that they will definitely go forward with another project with Gale, but they are not sure which one yet. Without the partnership with Gale, they would not have digitized such a substantial portion of the collection, due to funding issues. The database is currently only available to those with subscriptions, but after an embargo period, the library will be able to upload the digitized collection to their website for anyone to access.
Katie McCann, from the Library of Congress, asked Mr. Alencar-Brayner how he promoted projects at the British Library that encourage users to manipulate data within their digital humanities collections. He answered that they use social media and put basic instructions online. They had planned a press release for their geo-referencing project, but after posting to twitter, all 2000 maps were geo-referenced by the next day, before they could put out the press release.
Ms. Alvarez closed the session by thanking the presenters.
Moderator: David Dressing, University of Notre Dame
Rapporteur: Marisol Ramos, University of Connecticut
David Dressing, University of Notre Dame: The purpose of panel was to discuss the history of both organizations inside the bigger structure of CRL and clarify the difference between LAMP and LARRP mission.
Judy Alspach—Building on A history of Collaboration: The evolution of LAMP and LARRP
Judy Alspach, CRL Area Studies Program Manager, offered a brief history of CRL and LAMP and LARRP to give a historical context to their creation and original missions.
CRL was founded in 1949 and located in High Park neighborhood in Chicago. It supports original research in the humanities, sciences and social sciences through physical and electronic collections. It also supports collective decision-making among its members. These include consortia purchases of electronic databases or microfilms collections, pre-archiving, etc. Originally, CRL started with ten founding institutions from the Midwest. Right now they have over 200 North American members in the US and Canada and their recently added new membership category, Global members include Germany, India, Hong Kong. Members get the following benefits:
- Extended Interlibrary Loan of CRL collection
- Digital Delivery of CRL materials
- Access to LLMC-Digital Cooperative collection programs and services
- Licensing of specialized databases
- Access to Charleston Advisor
Under CRL there are six projects that Judy referred to as the “AMPs”, which work to acquire library and archival materials from different world regions. The first one created was the Cooperative Africana Materials Project (CAMP) founded in 1963, LAMP was the fourth AMP created in 1975. There are 49 members and currently they pay $765 in dues.
LAMP: When originally constituted, LAMP focused first in acquiring microfilm materials from Mexico and Brazil based on an analysis of the needs of the 16 members at the time. Choosing these countries was a strategic decision by the members as they started this collaborative collection building in areas of great interests for the membership. At that time, LAMP purchased microfilm and did original microfilming. For a complete history visit, http://www.crl.edu/pt-br/area-studies/lamp/membership-information/project-history. Judy encouraged the LAMP members in the audience to continue this strategic thinking when considering projects and purchases so gaps can be filled based on the collective needs of institutional members.
Today, LAMP continues to acquire newspapers, archival collections, government documents, periodicals, ephemera and other rare material from/about Latin America but it is not limited to just buying microfilm or microfiche, or microfilming materials but it has expanded its mission to support digitization projects. There are over 10,000 reels available for lending to LAMP members.
LARRP (Latin Americanist Research Resources Project) was launched in 1994. When it started there were 20 members and now there are 46 paying $900 in annual membership dues. Seven LARRP partners in Latin America do not pay dues but they have historically contributed to LARRP projects. LARRP was launched with the help of several grants: a matching grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and two TICFIA (Technological Innovation and Cooperation for Foreign Information Access) grants from the U.S. Dept. of Education in 1999-2002. The first grant for $405,000 purchased equipment and anything else necessary to support LARRP work and the second of $585,000 supported the acquisition of Latin American grey literature in the social sciences to be shared through an Open Archives Portal.
LARRP had always been about collaboration and open access to information from Latin America and the Caribbean as some of the early initiatives attested. For example, LAPTOP (The Latin American Periodicals Tables of Contents) was started in 1994 to give access to print journals from Latin American and the Caribbean not indexed elsewhere. LARRP members contributed content from 1994-2009. Currently this legacy database is hosted at Vanderbilt University and it is available for searches at http://laptoc.library.vanderbilt.edu/query/basic_search.jsp. The focus has not been collection building like LAMP but to create access to hard to find information.
Another example is LAOAP (The Latin American Open Archives Portal) a project created to provide scholars with a portal to find grey literature created in Latin America and the Caribbean. Currently it is hosted through LANIC at the University of Texas-Austin, http://lanic.utexas.edu/project/laoap/. LAOAP includes working documents, preprints, research papers, statistical documents, and other difficult-to-access material published by research institutions, nongovernmental organizations, and peripheral agencies, and that are not controlled by commercial publishers. Major contributors to this project include Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales-Chile (FLACSO-Chile) and Centro de Investigaciones Regionales de Mesoamérica (CIRMA).
Finally, LARRP has for many years supported a collaborative collection development project called the Distributed Resources Project where each member of LARRP commits 7% of their collection budget to purchase monographs and other materials in their declared area of focus (geographical area or around a topic, folklore, music, etc…). The total reallocated funding has been more than $170,000 per year.
Melissa Guy—LARRP Today: Strategic Directions and a Vision for the future
Melissa presented on the big transition and new directions that LARRP undertook back in 2012 when all grant-funded projects were done or winding down. In a LARRP executive meeting at Austin in 2012, Dan Hazen raised the question of what to do next? What else LARRP should be doing besides paying for the Advisory Board members to meet, now that these projects were over or almost over? They decided to strategically plan new directions. For that purpose and as a suggestion from Judy Alspach, LARRP Advisory Board draft their first By-laws to formalize the governing structure of the organization and allow more participation beyond the Advisory Board by creating Working Groups that would assist them in moving forward. The By-laws were approved in 2014, together with the election of chairs and new working groups.
Although the core mission of LARRP remained the same, a new document was developed. This Strategic Directions Document created to guide the creation of new activities into the future.
Three areas were identified as priorities:
1) Access to primary sources through digital initiatives. E.g. the Princeton Ephemera digitization project.
2) Collections analysis and the continuation of the Distributive Resources Program (DRP) (mentioned by Judy).
- The data that will be gathered will be use to better communicate with administrators the value of LARRP projects to participating members and to help plan better collection development activities that will benefit all members.
3) Promote visibility of Latin American and Caribbean content in various arenas including indexes, web-scale discovery solutions, and other similar tools.
Working groups were created to tackle these issues. Some of the activities assigned to these working groups already had been done through committee in the old structure but the creation of the new structure promises to allow for better focus and participation from the membership at large. The working groups include:
Communication and Outreach (chaired by Teresa Chapa): Main charge is to advertise and promote LARRP projects and serve as a liaison with the broader Latin Americanist community. A recent addition to the group’s duties includes encouraging and facilitating membership and participation in LARRP.
Collaborative Collections and Analysis (chaired by Paul Losch) – promotes the expansion of the Latin American Studies collection by analyzing its members’ acquisitions trends and encouraging deep collecting in specific areas of interest. It is responsible to continue the work of DRP.
Digital Initiatives Working Group (chaired by Mei Mendez): focus on increasing access to primary sources for research on Latin America through digitization and other initiatives. Post-custodial archives may become a priority for this group.
Resource Discovery Working Group (chaired by David Dressing) is a completely new group that facilitates the visibility of research resources for Latin America. This group will work with content aggregators, discovery tool providers, and other information creators for the benefit of the Latin Americanist research community.
There will be opportunities for LARRP members to become involved in all of these initiatives. A call will go out after the SALALM meeting.
In October 2014, the new elected working groups chairs, members at large, and the rest of the advisory committee (both current and “legacy members”) met in Chicago to start working on goals and objectives for each working group. One goal of great importance was the drafting of new criteria for LARRP proposals. Mei Mendez, chair of Digital Initiatives, led on this task. The resulting document served to clarify many issues regarding the type of projects that LARRP will support from now on, both from the membership and the advisory board. During this meeting, the new Strategic document guided the discussion on what the criteria should be for projects, based on 6 principles found in the document:
1) Work within existing systems, rather than building new infrastructure
2) Adhere to open access principles
3) Support scholarship in a variety of disciplines
4) Provide models for future collaboration
5) Involve institutional partners within Latin American whenever possible
6) Provide added value to the Latin Americanist research community as a whole
The 2015-2016 call for proposals was the first submitted under the new criteria. Several traditional digitization projects were received, but also a request for an endorsement of an Argentine open access approval plan project.
What is next?
- LARRP will continue to be an entity that vets and provides funding and support for open access projects. A new faculty rep was selected, Gustavo Fischman from Arizona State, who has a solid academic background in this area, particularly focused on Mexico and Brazil.
- Through our new working group setup, LARRP is in the position to take on some of the major issues and challenges facing Latin American and Area Studies librarianship
Melissa finished her presentation by thanking Dan Hazen for being the inspiration to the changes that LARRP experienced in the last several years. He asked the hard questions that enabled the group to justify the dues we gather from our members, to collaborate with partners in Latin America, and to lead the way in international librarianship. Melissa expressed her commitment to honor Hazen’s legacy by pushing LARRP in this new directions.
Suzanne M. Schadl, University of New Mexico—LAMP (CRL): Collaborative Preservation of Brazilian Primary Source Materials
Suzanne opened her presentation with a note on the relevance of microfilm, which remains a reliable and accessible preservation method that does not depend on software and can still be accessed in the absence of electricity by placing it in front of a light source. More importantly, engaging in microfilming archival projects helps expand the amount of critical primary sources from Latin American and Caribbean. LAMP plays a big role helping international institutions to preserve their archival collections through microfilm projects, and making them accessible to institutional members in United States and Canada.
Instead of talking about the history of LAMP—which Judy from CRL had already covered, Suzanne chose to address specific examples of LAMP projects that connect with the theme of the conference, “Brazil in the World, the World in Brazil: Research Trends and Library Resources.” These example showcase cooperative engagement and partnerships across boundaries. They showcase how microfilming and digitization as well as LAMP and LARRP complement each other. Suzanne noted that she had a personal reason to pick these examples: As a graduate student, some of the materials from Brazil that LAMP helped preserved were vital to her own dissertation research.
In the context of the conference theme, LAMP is dealing with the same issues being discussed in the conference: the need to build sustainable practices through collaboration/cooperation and partnerships, and the need to provide library services that support learning and research in higher education (Discovery, Knowledge, and Design). For Suzanne, LAMP has excelled especially in the area of knowledge by preserving and making accessible rare and difficult to access materials. She emphasized that this history of collaboration and cooperation in LAMP (and LARRP) reflected library trends current today such as the 2015 ACRL Research Planning and Review Committee which emphasized “deeper collaboration” as a unifying theme under new trends, looking specifically at “data, device neutral digital services, evolving openness in higher education, student success initiatives, competency-based learning, altmetrics, and digital humanities”.
Suzanne discussed the history and background of the Brazilian Government Document project. This LAMP project funded in 1994 by a Mellon Foundation grant, aimed to explore the viability of digitizing microfilm. LAMP engaged the Biblioteca Nacional and the Arquivo Nacional to collaborate in the scanning and indexing a selection of 19th and 20th century Brazilian Government documents of great importance in the history of the country: Provincial Presidential Reports (1830-1930) Presidential Messages (1889-1993) Almanak Laemmert (1844-1889) Ministerial Reports (1821-1960) from microfilm [to learn more about this project visit, http://www-apps.crl.edu/brazil] LAMP representatives including Scott Van Jacob, David Block, Ann Hartness, Dan Hazen, Marlys Rudeen, and James Simon worked in collaboration with the University of Notre Dame, Cornell University, University of Texas at Austin, Harvard College Library, Center for Research Libraries, and the Biblioteca Nacional, Arquivo Nacional to coordinate this project.
Suzanne asked, what has changed in LAMP? Have the means changed, the purposes? Is there still a reason for preserving materials through cooperative agreements? And if the mean have changed, what have we learned from actions of the past? To compare the past with the present, Suzanne shared highlights from a report by Scott Van Jacob about the Brazilian Government Document Project. Van Jacob reported that the BGDP project increased scholarly access to rare materials by expanding these corpus through digitalization. It also implemented new mechanisms for better bibliographic and structured access and indexing, explored levels of demand and patterns of use through assessment and statistics, and helped refine the process of creating digital image files from preservation microfilm.
What new directions is LAMP taking in its cooperative projects? Suzanne mentioned improving access to data, working to develop new device-neutral digital services; inspiring new evolving models that promote openness in higher education; encouraging initiatives for student success and competency-based learning; and offering alternatives and new models such as Altmetrics and digital humanities.
An example that Suzanne discussed briefly and that showcased similar ideas is the case of Ann Hartness’ Subject Guide to Statistics in the Presidential Reports of the Brazilian Provinces 1830-1889 printed in 1977 by the Institute of Latin American Studies, University of Texas at Austin. This print source was later digitized to increase access of both the bibliographic information and the digitized materials, see the Hartness’ Guide to Statistical Information at http://brazil.crl.edu/bsd/bsd/hartness/index.html.
Suzanne asked: How do we expand partnership (old and new) in the future? LAMP is committed to exploring new and expand old partnerships to promote digital humanities, for examples, by continuing what LAMP already is good at: Set the standards for preservation and selection of content and we have readings related to that content. The new direction should include finding collaborators with experience in design to help us design better interfaces for content.
Finally, she briefly mentioned a project that served as an example of the way forward – a model for how collaboration might help achieve greater accessibility. The recently finished Brazil: Nunca Mais Project, is a microfilm collection that was digitized to increase access http://www.crl.edu/impact/brazilian-human-rights-evidence-preserved-nunca-mais-project and http://bnmdigital.mpf.mp.br/#!/ This project not only offers access to over 1,000,000 digitized records that document human rights violations by the Brazilian Military Court from 1964-1979 but also have an interface that allow searches across all the documents in the collection. Check out other LAMP projects at http://www.crl.edu/area-studies/lamp/collections/guides
Gail Williams, Florida International University: Shared historical background about LARRP. She reminded people that originally LARRP was founded under the auspices of ARL (Academic Research Libraries) but in 2005-2006 they decided to let LARRP moved to CRL.
Other historical tidbits: In the 1990s there was discussion to hire agents in Mexico and other key countries to collect extensively ephemera but that plans did not happen.
Finally, Gail asked the question, what is the difference between LAMP and LARRP? Should they co-exist? Or should they merge? She felt at this point that “we still do not have the answer to those questions”.
Judy Alspach, CRL: To answer Gail’s questions here are some considerations. She shared a slide that shows the differences and commonalities between the two groups. She mentioned that she sees a couple of different scales, but also a continuum between LAMP and LARRP that can serve as a guideline to think about these two groups.
- One of the main differences between LAMP and LARRP is that LAMP’s main concern is to build and own collections, while LARRP is not interested in building collections of materials.
- Collaboration is important for both groups but for LARRP collaboration between members is expected, and many projects in LARRP encourage active participation of all its members one way or another. While for LAMP, although collaboration is considered important, all members are not required or expected to participate in the same projects in the same way as LARRP does. For example, LAMP members contribute with monies to collectively purchase, microfilm or digitize materials, while in LARRP, projects such as the Distribute Resource Project, or the past LAPTOC project, needed the participate of all (or most) of its members for its success.
- [Later added by Judy as part of AJ Johnson, UT-Austin, comments]. LAMP always had a commitment to invest in the “preservation for access” of rare and endanger primary materials as part of their core mission.
- Both groups articulate the value of involving international partners in an on-going contributing way
- Both groups believe in open access. Both groups promote projects that benefit the broader Latin American research community as a whole. Both groups support projects that contain elements with broad appeal to its members, and non-members as well
Melissa Guy, Arizona State University: Regarding demarcation between LAMP and LARRP. She commented that although there are similarities between both groups and even projects that both group may fund together, because the new Strategic Directions Document created recently, and the new working groups created based on these new directions for LARRP, it will mean that new projects will tackle bigger and broader issues, beyond digitization.
Gail Williams, Florida International University: Gail reminded people that LARRP since the beginning was able to tackle big granted projects by having members institutions volunteer to be PIs (Principal Investigator), for example UT-Austin and UCLA.
David Dressing, Notre Dame: Agreed with AJ Johnson that LAMP’s core mission is preservation and that LARRP mission is finding way to give more access to information instead of getting content available. He also asked how technology changes will affect LARRP’s mission to find new ways to make information and content more available.
Melissa Guy, Arizona State University: Melissa addressed this issue by saying that LARRP after the experience with LAPTOC decided to stop chasing technology. LARRP’s job is not creating infrastructures that may become obsolete through time. LARRP will focus instead for on discoverability and working with vendors and providers to educate on how to make Latin American and Caribbean materials more discoverable using their tools. The Resources Discovery working group was created to tackle these issues. s.
Suzanne M. Schadl, University of New Mexico: Suzanne added that we should consider other models such as the archival post-custodial model. Also she sees LARRP as a broker between international partners and our university administrators to justify purchases of technology that will benefit partners and hopefully avoid unnecessary bureaucracy. Instead of trying to do projects individually, LARRP can do it as a group.
Judy Alspach, CRL: Judy mentioned that one of the biggest challenges moving forward is tackling copyright issues related to technology and access. CRL can control access through IP address so only members can access materials with copyright issues but that may defeat open access efforts. Also, technology capacity is an issue. She used as an example an audio files proposal discussed recently in the LARRP meeting which she declared at this point may be impossible to tackle by CRL/LAMP/LARRP because they have not the technology to handle audio files yet. She felt the project was more appropriate for LAMP since it has a preservation component. But she admitted that sometimes it is difficult to decide what can be done with a project because of copyrights and capability issues.
Chris Hernández, Tulane U.: She asked clarification regarding LAMP and LARRP guidelines since she felt that they were confusing when she was deciding which group to apply for the audio files projects referred by Judy. Chris thought that her project did not qualify for LAMP because in the website it said that LAMP was more interested in preserving “newsworthy” content and her project contains content that is entertainment related.
Marisol Ramos, University of Connecticut: She reminded panelists that CRL staff and LAMP and LARRP advisory committee members are available for consultation and clarification regarding projects suitability and which group is more appropriate for applications We welcome all questions, so don’t hesitate to ask. She expressed that regarding the Tulane project, the material in question had incredible scholarly value for researchers so it is appropriate for LAMP. Suzanne M. Schadl (UNM) mentioned that this confusion may have occurred because the website is listing past projects which included many newspaper microfilm projects.
Marisol Ramos (UConn), also made the suggestion that CRL should have an in-house expert regarding copyright issues or to contact experts in the copyright issues in libraries/archives on behalf of its members when such questions arise. For example, she reached out to Peter Hirtle, an archivist and Senior Policy Advisor to the Cornell University Library with a special mandate to address intellectual property issues, for advice regarding the Tulane proposal’s copyright issues. He was very gracious and he sent his response to Chris Hernández with very good advice. We should identify such experts and make sure that we at CRL/LAMP/LARRP are abreast of these issues and make that information available to all our members to help them when considering writing a proposal with an open access component.
John Wright, Brigham Young University: John asked if LARRP and LAMP could push for a series of seminar for faculty and students to promote LARRP and LAMP content/projects/collections. He felt that both LARRP and LAMP need to promote their work and collections. Melissa Guy (ASU), answered that she liked the idea of the seminars and that is something that the Communication and Outreach Working Group can explore more.
Lynn Shirey, Harvard University: Lynn asked for clarification if to apply for grant money from LAMP or LARRP, does the applicant need to be member of these groups or can non-members apply for funding? What about international applicants?
Judy Alspach, CRL: Judy said that they will like to encourage new memberships for either LAMP or LARRP since membership support the work of these groups but both groups will consider applications from non-members. Similarly, it is not require that international applicants be members but it helps a lot if they team up with a LAMP or LARRP member to help them with their application/project.
Molly Molloy, New Mexico State University: Molly had the last word before closing the panel. She explained that the advantage of membership is that the monies collected from the dues are used to fund all the great projects discussed today. The more members are in LAMP and/or LARRP the more projects can be funded.
Moderator: Ellen Jaramillo (Yale University)
Rapporteur: Richard Phillips (University of Florida)
Ellen Jaramillo (Yale University) warmly welcomed the audience of 25 and introduced the 3 panelists. Speaking first was Ricardo Souza de Carvalho from the Universidade de São Paulo, with a paper entitled: ” O acervo ibero-americano de um brasileiro nos Estados Unidos : a história da Oliveira Lima Library. “The second speaker was Pilar Moreno from Mexico’s Biblioteca Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz (Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana), who presented her paper: “ Uso y preservación de colecciones del patrimonio cultural brasileño y mexicano en la Biblioteca Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.” The final participant on this panel was Giuliana Ragusa from the Universidade de São Paulo with her talk: ” Biblioteca Brasiliana Mindlin: uma história de desafios ” ; questions followed.
Ricardo Souza de Carvalho traced the background and creation of the Oliveira Lima Library at Catholic University in Washington, DC. He spoke in animated terms of the life of Manoel de Oliveira Lima (1867-1928) and his passion for books and book collecting. Born in Recife, his youth in Portugal and Brazil was filled with a love of culture, especially history. He authored many books and journals. His work as a member of Brazil’s diplomatic corps took him to London, Bonn, Tokyo, Washington and other international capitals, and these assignments facilitated his acquisition and appreciation of rare and fine books, especially on the history of Brazil. In the early 1900s Oliveira Lima considered the placement of his personal book and manuscripts collection at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. following years of contact with that institution.
In 1916 he formally agreed with Bishop Thomas Shahan of Catholic University to move forward with that gift. Details negotiated with CU were to ensure that the donation would have a separate room that would carry his name – The Oliveira Lima Library – and that it would be processed promptly, and be an active and open research facility. This also was to include conservation of fragile manuscript items, archival organization of correspondence, staffing by knowledgeable curators, and on-going efforts to gain support for further development of these rare, unique intellectual resources. The original gift was some 40,000 volumes, plus many manuscripts, photos and art, and it now has grown to some 60,000 volumes. Support for that endeavor included testimonials from leading scholars, including Gilberto Freyre. Other universities such as Cambridge (UK) and Bonn (Germany) were also considered, but Catholic University was chosen.
Souza de Carvalho went on to reflect on the progress and on a number of frustrations and delays in the years following the creation of the Oliveira Lima Library. By the end of the 1920s large amounts of the collections has been given cataloging and bibliographic description. However, the handling of the Library was sometimes chaotic, in spite of the best intentions. Access was uneven, some of the holdings were moved to private hands, and others were still not fully known. World wars, and the economic depressions and downturns in the 1930s, and again in the 1950s, were also roadblocks. But, throughout the years the Oliveira Lima Library has remained a dedicated resource, now with a greater focus and support. Directors have been Mauricio Cardoso, Richard Morse, and current head Tom Cohen.
Today the Oliveira Lima Library at Catholic University is active in serving users from across the globe. Digital projects and efforts are bearing impressive success. Access is at: http://libraries.cua.edu/oliveiralima/; to paraphrase Souza de Carvalho, the Oliveira Lima Library at Catholic University is indispensable for research and study of Brazil.
Pilar Moreno described the holdings related to Brazil at the Biblioteca Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz (Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana) in México, D.F., citing with light humor how Brazil is sometimes viewed by Mexicans as a land of carnival and soccer, while Mexico is seen by Brazilians good heartedly as a country consuming chiles and telenovelas. Moreno then moved beyond those initial jokes and perspectives by tracking intellectual and cultural relations between the two societies since each gained independence in the 1820s. She looked at the early diplomatic representations and talks each nation held in Buenos Aires during those early independent years as a launch point between Brazil and Mexico that eventually grew to full ambassadorial exchanges, and that have become today’s on-going accords and agreements.
Moreno singled out symbolic manifestations over the years by the two nations: these included the gift of a statue of Cuauhtémoc by Mexico to Brazil and Rio de Janeiro in 1922 at the celebration of the centennial of Brazilian independence; and, the service of Alfonso Reyes as ambassador to Brazil for the much of the 1930s – a post from which Reyes directed programming to enhance Brazilian and Mexican interchanges. Significant notables that were active and effective in these efforts were Octavio Paz, João Goulart, Florestan Fernandes, Lula, Vicente Fox and a number of others. Current themes, to be sure, have moved beyond the cultural panorama and now feature migration, hemispheric security, science, technology, environmentalism, commerce and education as top priorities.
The library at the Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana supports teaching and research, and holdings include books, journals and films ; there is an ambitious offering of Portuguese language instruction at the Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana, training students in programs including Human Rights, Law, Audiovisual Communications, and the Humanities. For more, see http://www.ucsj.edu.mx ; NOTE : an impressive file of the sounds of Mexico [Sonoteca de Mexico] is in development.
The third panelist was Giuliana Ragusa from the Universidade de São Paulo with an interesting talk: ” Biblioteca Brasiliana Mindlin ” ; the BBM, she reported, was the project of Brazilian industrialist José Mindlin who devoted his life and fortune to the appreciation and acquisition of books, manuscripts, and other cultural items dealing with Brazil in all fashions. The BBM contains some 60,000 volumes and for years was housed in the personal home of the Mindlin family. In 2013 it was moved to a new, well-designed, low humidity special collections facility at USP.
Items of note in the BBM include a 1557 edition of the travel account of Hans Staden, many documents from Brazil’s imperial years of 1822-1889, and a fabulous array of original manuscripts from writers such as João Guimarães Rosa, Gilberto Freyre, and Padre Vieira. It is important to also note that José Mindlin supported contemporary writing and the arts generously, and served on editorial commission of the prominent Edusp publishing house as just one example.
BBM has a digital archive of some 3,000 titles, such as Gabriel Soares de Souza’s important Tratado : see http://www.bbm.usp.br/node/59
Questions in the limited time available were from Paul Losch (University of Florida) concerning the cataloging of the Biblioteca Brasiliana Mindlin loading into and appearing in OCLC; Ragusa was not certain, and this has not been verified. Next, Talía Guzmán-González (of Maryland) asked about the financial status of the BBM, and Ragusa replied that it is a part of USP’s library system, but funding for the future acquisition and purchase of rare materials is never certain.
Richard Phillips (U of Florida)
Moderator: Peter T. Johnson, Princeton University
Rapporteur: Holly Ackerman, Duke University
Stanley J. Stein, Walter Samuel Carpenter III Professor in Spanish Civilization and Culture and Professor of History, Emeritus, at Princeton University, is a lifelong Latin Americanist. Together with his late wife Barbara Hadley Stein, herself an accomplished bibliographer and historian of the region, Professor Stein wrote several books and articles that put their stamp on methods of writing the economic and political history of modern Latin America, specifically on the impact of colonialism and industrialism in Mexico and Brazil in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It is fair to say that no one studying Latin American history would fail to engage his work (The Americas 66:3/ January 2010).
Pedro Meira Monteiro is a professor of Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Cultures at Princeton University, where he teaches courses on Latin America with a special focus on literature and society in Brazil, ranging from fiction, poetry, essays, and music, to politics, race, and citizenship. In recent years Prof. Meira Monteiro’s research has developed around the intersection of intellectual history and literature. He has worked on multiple fronts, combining academic production with the writing of shorter texts for cultural magazines, blogs and newspapers.
Daryle Willams is Associate Professor of History at the University of Maryland. In addition to his teaching contributions to history and the Latin American studies certificate program, he served as director of the Committee on Africa and the Americas, associate director of the David C. Driskell Center, and director of graduate studies in history. A scholar of modern Latin America, Williams’ research specialty is Brazil. His first monograph, “Culture Wars in Brazil: The First Vargas Regime, 1930-1945,” won the American Historical Association’s prize for the best book in Latin American or Iberian history. In 2013 he was appointed Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs in the College of Arts and Humanities.
Stanley Stein began by saying that he offered two caveats on his presentation entitled Aspects of Field Research in Brazil; the first being that he would describe conditions from seventy years ago and the second being that his memory sometimes fails. That said, he set the scene by saying that he first arrived in Brazil in 1941 as a Harvard graduate student but his research was suspended upon joining the US Navy in 1943. After military service in Italy, he returned to Rio de Janeiro in June of 1948 after a thirteen day sea voyage with his wife (Barbara Hadley Stein), two year old daughter, two letters of introduction from colleagues at Harvard and his camera.
At that point he had been a doctoral student at Harvard for two years; was exposed to multiple disciplines and had read Afonso de E. Taunay’s multi-volume history of Brazilian coffee. He was interested in History, Anthropology and Economics and planned to study five different municipalities in Brazil over a period of fifteen months, photographing the process of deforestation going on at that time. He quickly saw that his agenda was too crowded and narrowed his study to one municipality – Vassouras.
Stein recalled meeting with Melville Herskovits prior to going to Brazil and was greatly influenced by Herskovits’ Life in a Haitian Valley. Herskovits advised him to prepare general discussion themes for each interview but never to take notes or photos during an interview but to make notes at once afterwards. He remembered sitting down in the roadside after interviews to make extensive notes.
Stein’s daily schedule in 1948 included working in the morning at the national archives and in the afternoon in the notarial archives. With the help of his wife Barbara, he met two gentlemen who were former slaves. These two informants became central to the field work. He recorded their slave chants called “jongos” which they shared with him. Although Stein used the jongos simply to search for general themes that preoccupied the slaves, he pointed out that these recordings eventually became important sources for the study of literary forms explored by a new generation of scholars including co-panelist Pedro Meira and other Brazilianists such as Michael Stone.
Pedro Meira Monteiro credited Stanley Stein as an inspirational force in his own work. He offered his presentation as a case study of how a project evolves and as a panoramic view of how sources are found and used. The project he described was a ten year quest to find and analyze correspondence between two Brazilian intellectuals – Mário de Andrade (1893-1945) and Sérgio Buarque de Holanda (1902-1982). The result is a book jointly published in 2012 by Companhia das Letras and the University of São Paulo (USP), in partnership with the Institute for Brazilian Studies at USP. It was also ten years where there was a change in the dynamics of annotation, thanks to what perhaps we can call the digital age.
Prof. Monteiro showed slides demonstrating the changing methods for explicating the correspondence. For example, notes were essential to create context for the reader regarding references in the letters and the world inhabited by the authors. This resulted in numerous and lengthy footnotes. The question for the author is: How far do you go in researching the context and, then, how much of your findings do you pass on to the reader? Also, what is the nature of the footnotes – are they encyclopedic? Time bound? – i.e., must explanation be limited to events and knowledge at the time the letters were written?
Additionally, the very nature of how one conducts research was changing over the decade while the study was in process, with digital sources and internet content expanding exponentially. This made it easier to find material but also pointed up the evolution of a kind of “common sense” in the Internet where errors are introduced and then rapidly shared. Dr. Monteiro suggests that future scholars may find themselves unraveling the errors of the Internet and points to the importance of preserving original sources to permit comparison and resolution.
One example offered of the process described above is a request made in a letter from Mario de Andrade to Sergio Buarque to assist in finding the population of Itu during a particular time period. Sergio refers him to a travel account by the naturalist Von Martius. This results in a discussion between the correspondents about the books they own and their relative value. Prof. Meira Monteiro then finds data on Mario’s indebtedness during the very time when he tells Sergio that he is unwilling to sell some of his most valuable books. And, Prof. Meira Monteiro also finds that one of those books recently sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars. What do these findings tell us about Andrade’s priorities, his status as a bibliophile and how might the information be included by the author?
Meira Monteiro proposed that the development of future critical production depends less on a technical breakthrough, and more on an intimacy with the digital world, which only the younger generations have. He concluded by saying that perhaps the function of the older generations of scholars is precisely to avoid throwing out the baby with the bath. After all, what will notes mean to future scholars who do not know how to slowly cultivate reading and research? What is the limit to the acceleration and multiplication of information? This seems to be our big question.
Daryle Williams began by acknowledging an intellectual debt to his co-panelists, stating that Stanley Stein was his first professor of Latin American & Caribbean Studies when he began his studies at Princeton. Peter Johnson was his professor in his junior year who taught him both substantive content and the importance of working with a librarian and Pedro Meira Monteiro helped him with important field work.
Professor Williams pointed out the often overlooked importance of general interest periodicals which is the format he then discussed. Although there was no local press in the Brazilian colonial period, by 1808 a press was working freely and the 19th Century saw a press relatively free of censorship. After 1850s the crônica became a typical Brazilian form. In the 1900s press censorship became heavy and even in the 1980’s newsstands were bombed to prevent circulation of material on the movement toward democracy.
In his own research Prof. Williams has found the National Library as the best source for this type of material along with some private archives consisting mainly of hard copies and microfilm. He reminded researchers that this is a manual process using outdated film and microfilm readers under conditions with poor electric connections which makes it a slow and tedious process. He is accustomed to limited lists and brief cataloging as well as narrow and deep searching of a single title.
Williams stressed the importance of evaluating the condition of materials to select the best site for research. For example, he goes to Campinas to use copies of film from Rio de Janeiro because the copy there is in better shape. Another valuable but overlooked source is clipping services. In the 1990s this type of source was proven useful when the Brazilian police opened their archives and he could see their clipping collections. He suggested that librarians think about useful ways to catalog this type of resource.
Around 2004, some of these sources began to be digitally available. O Globo led the way by digitizing in the 1990s and in 2002 government documents were released digitally along with out-of-print serials. This reintroduced researchers to some sources and also democratized who can conduct research by making things available without extensive travel. It widened the community of researchers and meant that research is not driven by headlines or page placement. With free-text searching, it is easy to follow individuals; to aggregate data such as price series and to incorporate many voices.
Time expired before questions could be asked.
June 15, 2015, 3:00-4:30 p.m.
Moderator: Ruby M. Gutiérrez, Hispanic American Periodical Index (HAPI)
Rapporteur: John B. Wright, Brigham Young University
Paloma Celis-Carbajal, University of Wisconsin-Madison: Acquiring Latin American Materials in the 21st Century: A Prelimnary Report on the Collection Development Trends Task Force,
Debra McKern, Library of Congress, Rio de Janeiro Office: Brazil’s Popular Groups: Acquiring the Grey Literature Collection at the Library of Congress
Jennifer Osorio, University of California, Los Angeles: Serials Acquisitions in the Digital ‘Future’: If It’s All Online, What’s the Problem?
Ruby Gutiérrez announced a change in order of the presentations: 1) Osorio, 2) McKern, and 3) Celis-Carbajal.
Osorio discussed the different models of open access in Latin America (LA) and the United States (U.S.). Through her presentation she discussed answers for the following questions: Is open access in LA the same as in the US? How are the models different? Which if any are the implications for libraries and collections of the rapid adoption of open access in LA? Are there dangers to the breakneck speed of open access adoption in LA? What is in the open access portals and what is not. She described the transformation of LA universities from the former state-building enterprise, describing how higher education in LA now follows more the US research model and gives more visibility to women and lower classes. She then discussed LA journals and their status in open access portals. In 2003, 40 percent of LA journals were available through open access, and in 2010, 74% of LA journals were available through open access. LA open access portals have similar requirements for inclusion that monitored inclusion in the LA print journals and are still largely funded by government agencies. In LA, the assumption is that inclusion in open access portals equals quality. She showed several tables that showed in general terms the differences of the open access model in LA and the US. She indicated that because of the open access model of favoring international issues over regional issues, hard sciences over social sciences, English over Spanish/Portuguese, Large communities over small communities, Generic coverage over specialized coverage, Well-funded and stable over struggling, that some specific consequences result. They are, 1) regional or provincial voices are lost, 2) new scholars do not have a real venue for getting their research out, 3) voices in other languages than the dominant languages are lost, 4) publications are underfunded and erratic. There appears to be a sense of neo-colonialism inherent in this type of model. The implications on developing LA collections, require that representative voices not included in the portals be sought out. Regional, national and local titles in collection must be prioritized and acquired. Also, research in other formats must be sought out as well.
McKern discussed the grey literature collection from Brazil’s popular groups at the Library of Congress and the ways in which the Rio Office tries to acquire these materials for its collection. These popular groups include: Agrarian reform; Children & youth; Education & communication; Environment & ecology; Ethnic groups: Blacks; Ethnic groups: Indian; Ethnic groups: Others; LGBT; Humanitarian & civil rights; Labor & laboring classes; Political parties & issues; Religions organizations, ecumenical groups and movements; Urban activism; and Women & feminists. She focused in on one group type “Environment & ecology” to illustrate some of the challenges for acquisition of materials. A lot of material is only available on Facebook, but some of it will always be available in print because it is intended to be handed out to people on the street who don’t have internet access. LC’s collections are searchable, but you have to buy the physical filter to get access to what you can find in a searchable index. The researcher cannot currently access the collection. They are talking with Princeton to learn about possibilities of piggybacking on Princeton’s Ephemeral Collection. She had some extra copies of material fitting into these popular groups that were available for collecting by anyone interested.
Celis-Carbajal presented a preliminary report of the Collection Development Trends Task Force which has the following members: Lief Adelson, Alejandra Cordero, Lynn Shirey, Sandra Saores, Miguel Valladares and Paloma Celis-Carbajal. The group grew out of the Librarian/Bookdealer/Publisher Committee at SALALM LVIII in Miami. The LARRP Survey and the attempts of Inter-Library Cooperation Committee to construct an overall picture of collection development going on has become very difficult to pull together. The Task Force has created a 20-question survey instrument to go out to all members of SALALM who have primary responsibility for collection development in their respective institutions. The results of the survey will not be published because obtaining clearance through an IRB would have been overly complicated. To date, two individuals have taken the survey and provided feedback to the Task Force. In the panel today, Celis-Carbajal invited the group to look at two specific questions and take two minutes to read and answer the question, giving the Task Force feedback on whether or not the two questions adequately obtained the desired solicited information. The group responded that it is odd to have the entire Caribbean in one group, while other countries are broken out separately. It was pointed out that not everyone can answer the specific question about vendors as it does not give enough options for adequately answering. It was also mentioned that the survey should be routed to whoever is most capable of answering the questions. Many of our libraries acquire materials through various ways. Many libraries decide on a particular vendor as a result of service provided, not necessarily if the vendor resides in the country being collected. The time period referred to in the survey instrument is not clear, i.e. actual year, fiscal year (and many institutions have a varied of fiscal year periods). The survey instrument instructs to select the “preferred” outcome, instead of the “actual” outcome. The group asked Celis-Carbajal to explain the goal of the survey. She responded that it is hoped that the survey can be done over successive years so that SALALM can understand trends over time. It was pointed out that it may be difficult because of the size of country/region covered in survey, size of institution doing the collecting. It was asked if we would be able to understand any of the changes in trends.
Ruby Gutiérrez (HAPI) asked Debra McKern how exactly the gathering of Brazil’s Popular Collections grey materials is accomplished and what are the difficulties in obtaining this material? McKern replied that the four acquisitions staff members from the LC Rio Office, some retired staff, and some staff in São Paulo go out on the streets to acquire the materials. They go out to the hinterlands to collect materials and say, “We are from the Library of Congress” and people respond “Really?”. Jennifer Osorio (UCLA) asked if our individual institutions can send to LC grey materials we obtain for inclusion in LC’s collection? McKern indicated that they would accept materials. McKern clarified that as they go collecting, they do not put themselves at risk. She used to take photographs of materials, but was told not to do that anymore by the US Consulate who indicated that it looked bad for someone to be taking photographs of this material. Miguel Valladares (University of Virginia) explained that he has the professors take grey literature obtained by him and use it in their classes. Gutiérrez (HAPI) asked Osorio if there was an index for LA open access journals/portals. HAPI has an index of which materials they index that is open access. Paloma Celis-Carbajal (U of Wisconsin-Madison) indicated that there is a LARRP proposal for open access. Mei Mendez (U of Miami) asked about literary journals and their availability in open access if social sciences are not well covered in portals. Osorio responded that it is hard to find literary journals and hard to collect them. Leif Adelson (Books from Mexico) mentioned that there is still a strong government connection with the panels that create/monitor the portals and that there really is a de-emphasis on the humanities and social sciences. Debra McKern (LC Rio Office) suggested that grey literature needs to be put in an archive, but wonders how best to divide it up. Should it just be in the categories or types that they are collecting? It seems that a web archive would work well for the serials.
Panelists: Hortensia Calvo, Tulane University
José Montelongo, University of Texas, Austin
M. Alejandra Plaza, Universidad Torcuato di Tella
Rapporteur: Brenda Salem, University of Pittsburgh
The panel, which had 21 attendees, dealt with the acquisition and/or discovery of literary collections at three different institutions that have proved to be highly valuable and even controversial. Each panelist discussed how their collection was acquired and why it is valuable to the study of Latin American literature.
The first presentation, titled, “Cartas de Lysi: Unpublished Letters from Sor Juana’s Mentor, María Luisa Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga” was given by Hortensia Calvo, the Executive Director of SALALM and the Doris Stone Librarian and Director of the Latin American Library at Tulane University.
The presentation dealt with the discovery of two previously unpublished handwritten letters by María Luisa Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga (1649-1729) in The Latin American Library’s manuscript collections. A Virreine of Mexico and Grandee of Spain, María Luisa Manrique de Lara is best known in the literary world as the friend and mentor of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a towering figure in the Spanish language. The letters, which deal with a wide variety of topics, shed light into the daily lives of women from an elite social class in early modern Spanish America. They also give a somewhat clearer picture of the life of María Luisa Manrique de Lara herself, of which not much is known. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this finding is that one of the letters contains a personal account of Manrique de Lara’s friendship with Sor Juana. Calvo and her co-author, Beatriz Colombi, a professor of literature at the Universidad de Buenos Aires, have co-authored a book about the letters titled Cartas de Lysi: la mecenas de Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz en correspondencia inédita (Madrid: Iberoamericana-Vervuert; Mexico: Bonilla Artigas Editores, 2015).
The letters were discovered in the Viceregal and Ecclesiastical Mexican Collection (VEMC), among the earliest manuscript collections acquired at Tulane’s Latin American Library. The collection is made up of 3,000 folders with mostly dispatches from viceroys, the Real Audiencia, and ecclesiastical administrative centers. It covers the years 1534-1919, with a majority of documents from the late colonial period. For more information, there is an extensive introduction by Michael Polushin on the Latin American Library’s website (http://archivolal.tulane.edu/?p=collections/controlcard&id=417). The collection was acquired by the Latin American Library in 1932. The bundle, or legajo in which the two letters by Maria Louisa were found contains 95 pieces of correspondence, mostly official reports written by Mexican Viceroys and other members of the Spanish nobility but a few are personal, covering the years 1589-1820.
Calvo talked about the reasons why these letters were not identified until now. One of the reasons is that while the rest of the VEMC has been extensively cataloged and described, the legajo containing the letters bear only very basic descriptions. Also, the handwriting is very difficult to read so it would have been difficult to immediately ascertain the contents of the letter. Moreover, the subject of interest to literary historians, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, who is referred to as “una monja jerónima,” is not mentioned until page 12 of the longest letter. Most of all, at the time the letters were acquired, women’s studies and the study of Baroque aesthetics were not a focus of interest. Also, the name of María Luisa Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga was not very recognizable at the time. Interest in the Baroque only came about with the Generation of ’27 in Spain. Calvo feels that this case of two documents that were preserved but sat in an archive without being discovered for such a long time teaches us about the forces that shape archives and how archival organizations play a very important role in shaping the production of knowledge.
Calvo went on to give an overview of the content of the letters. The two letters contain a total of 23 handwritten pages. The earliest is dated December 30, 1682 and is addressed to María de Guadalupe de Lencastre, Duchess of Aveiro, a cousin of María Luisa residing in Spain, who was a formidable person in her own right. Calvo gave a brief background on the Duchess of Aveiro and mentioned that the book contains a biography of her. It is in this letter that María Luisa mentions Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. The second letter, dated July 29, 1685 is a shorter, more hastily-written letter addressed to Maria Luisa’s father, Vespasiano Gonzaga, Duke of Guastalla, who lived in Madrid. The letters are very personal in nature and give a glimpse into María Luisa’s thoughts, feelings, and opinions of the New World. She also wrote details of domestic life in the palace. Her views of Indian life are paternalistic in tone, but differ from those of many of her contemporaries in that they convey a positive view of natives. Calvo read the passage in the letter in which María Luisa describes in wonder the circumstances and “supernatural” intelligence of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. María Luisa would often visit Sor Juana and Calvo posits that Sor Juana, who wrote in Nahuatl and was familiar with the local culture, could have served as a bridge for María Luisa to the local customs of the native population. Another remarkable aspect of the letter is that the personal information María Luisa gives about the Mexican nun is quite similar to the biographical information written by the Jesuit Diego Calleja that appears in Fama y obras póstumas (first published in 1700) and to autobiographical information written by Sor Juana herself in “Respuesta a Sor Filotea.” The passage in the Latin American Library’s letter establishes María Luisa, in her role as Sor Juana’s patron and promoter, as someone helping to bring about the narrative of her life as it has come to be known today and shows that even while Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz was still alive, an early version of her public persona was already taking shape.
Calvo concluded by saying that the letters give a clearer picture of the figure of María Luisa Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga, and shed light on her much-speculated relationship with the famous writer Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. The letters show that Manrique de Lara y Gonzaga was literate, intellectually curious, and with a sense of humor. It would not have been surprising to see that these characteristics would have been compatible with those of the highly intelligent and intellectual Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.
The second presentation was titled, “The Controversy over the Gabriel García Márquez Archive” and was given by José Montelongo, the Mexican Materials Bibliographer at the University of Texas, Austin. Montelongo opened the presentation by talking about the 2015 Feria Internacional del Libro de Bogotá, whose official featured country was the fictional town of Macondo from Gabriel García Marquez’s “100 Years of Solitude.” He described the book fair’s wildly popular pavilion, which paid tribute to the late Colombian author. He used this description to show just how admired and revered García Marquez is in his native Colombia and why there was such shock several months before in November 2014 when it was announced in the New York Times that his archive would be housed at the University of Texas, Austin, in the United States. The shock was such that Consuelo Gaytan, the head of the National Library of Colombia was questioned on national television about why García Marquez’s collection was “lost” to the American university. Having been caught unaware by the announcement, news outlets were trying desperately to find answers regarding the acquisition. The purpose of Montelongo’s presentation, therefore, was to recount a talk he gave with UT professor Gabriela Polit as guest speakers at the 2015 Feria Internacional del Libro de Bogotá to which they had been invited to answer the question of why Garcia Marquez’s archive went to the University of Texas, Austin.
He began by explaining that UT Austin had been committed to Latin American studies well before there was a possibility of acquiring García Marquez’s archive. The university has over 150 faculty members that engage with Latin American in their research, by traveling to Latin America, publishing along with their Latin American peers, and bringing some of their students to Latin America. In fact, many students from all over the United States and the rest of the world choose to attend UT Austin precisely because of its strong focus on Latin American studies. Moreover, the library has been acquiring Latin American materials for its Benson Latin American Collection for almost 100 years and the Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies (formerly the Institute of Latin American Studies) has been dedicated to the study of Latin America for almost 80 years. The University of Texas’ Harry Ransom Center, where the collection is now housed, has collections from authors whose works García Marquez counted among his influences, such as James Joyce, William Faulkner, and Virginia Wolfe. Montelongo felt that García Marquez would have been honored to have his work housed alongside of the work of those authors he admired. He would have liked to have started the talk by outlining the contents of the collection, which he had a chance to see, but the collection’s monetary value was addressed first. As a public institution, the University of Texas was required by law to disclose the cost of the collection, but the head of the Harry Ransom Center petitioned the state attorney to be exempt from having to disclose the price because it was felt that disclosure would negatively affect UT in future negotiations in comparison to private institutions, which are not required to disclose the prices of their acquisitions. However, the petition was denied and in February of 2015 the price of the collection was revealed to have been 2.2 million dollars. While it is considered less expensive compared to the known prices of other famous collections, Montelongo emphasized that the price of a collection takes into consideration many factors such as the size and completeness of a collection as well as its importance to history.
Montelongo also revealed that there was no auction. Instead, there was an exclusive negotiation between the University of Texas and García Marquez’s family. The sale of the García Marquez archive by the late author’s family to UT Austin was not simply motivated by money. It was also a matter of entrusting their family member’s legacy to an institution with the experience and the continuous financial support to take good care of it for many years to come. Moreover, it was a matter of leaving the collection to an institution that is relatively shielded from political turmoil, unlike many institutions in Latin America. Montelongo addressed the sentiment expressed by many, such as García Marquez biographer Gerald Martin, that the late author’s archives shouldn’t be housed in a country where he was banned from entering for many years. Montelongo maintained that García Marquez’s relationship to the United States had changed over the years. By the 1990s, he had been invited to meet with President Bill Clinton and dine with him at the White House. In fact, he had personal ties to the United States. In the early 2000’s, he went to Los Angeles for cancer treatment and it was there that he finished his memoir “Vivir Para Contarla.” Currently, his son is living in California, where he produces movies and TV shows.
While there are many good reasons why the archive went to UT Austin, Montelongo acknowledges that there are many perspectives on the acquistion. Things might look different to people like the head of the Colombian National Library, who has to answer questions about why García Marquez’s archive didn’t end up in his native country and to Colombian researchers who will have to take on the complications of leaving the country to study their own fellow countryman. Things might also look different from the perspective of a Latin American librarian working in the United States with collections from his or her native country. The reaction of the public can be seen on the Internet in comments to online news articles about the acquisition. Many have said that the collection should have been put up for international auction and that García Marquez’s family had no right to sell the archive to UT Austin without giving Colombia a chance to make an offer. Montelongo feels that indeed, the Colombian government might have been willing to offer more money than the amount that UT Austin paid, had they been given the chance, and that the collection would have been well taken care of in Colombia.
Montelongo related an article written in the El Universal newspaper by a literary critic who has done research in both Mexico and the United States. In this article, both the Harry Ransom Center and Princeton’s own Firestone Library are mentioned as having excellent archival collections that are very valuable to literary critics. This critic laments that while Mexico invests money in culture and celebrates its national literary figures, it does not have an institution with the funding to properly house and preserve its national literary heritage the way that Princeton and UT Austin do.
Montelongo then mentioned that at the end of October, UT Austin will be celebrating the acquisition of the García Marquez collection with a symposium co-sponsored by LLILAS-Benson and the Harry Ransom Center. Among the speakers at the symposium will be Salman Rushdie, Elena Poniatowska, and also numerous Colombian writers, academics, and government officials. There are also plans to digitize part of the collection.
Montelongo concluded by saying that at UT Austin they understand how desirable it would be for Latin America to develop its own abilities and resources to house and preserve its literary heritage in the countries where they were created.
The third presentation, titled “La Colección ‘J.J. Hernández – J. Bianco’ en la Biblioteca de la Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, Argentina” was given in Spanish by M. Alejandra Plaza, the director of the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella Library. It dealt with the J.J. Hernández – J. Bianco Collection at the Torcuato Di Tella University Library in Argentina. She started by giving a brief description of the Torcuato Di Tella University, a private university of about 5,000 students that has been around for only 25 years. Its library, housed in a single building, focuses on social sciences, humanities, as well as on the other fields of study at the university. It began as the library for the Institutio Torcuato Di Tella, which was founded in 1958, so the library, which has become valued within Argentina and Latin America, is older than the university it serves.
In 2008, the heirs of Argentinian author Juan José Hernández approached the university about donating his personal library to the Torcuato Di Tella library. Being the personal library of a writer, its main focus was on literature and contained the complete run of the literary journal Sur, which was, as far as it was known the time, one of the most valuable parts of the collection. At the time, there was no library director so the collection was appraised by two professors from their history department. By the time Plaza stepped in as library director, the donation had been completed. Plaza gave some background on Juan José Hernández, a poet, writer, and translator who was from the Tucumán province. She also listed some of his more well-known works.
The 3500 items in the collection consist mostly of books and periodical issues. Even though the library was short-staffed and had no director, it accepted the donation anyway. The two professors, Karina Galperín, who specializes in literature and Fernando Rocchi, who specializes in history, appraised the collection in its original location in Buenos Aires and found it to be valuable, but in retrospect, they didn’t realize just how valuable it was. The collection arrived at the Torcuato Di Tella Library in boxes in 2008 but it wasn’t until 2010 that they were able to process it. As the collection was being processed, some of the collection’s treasures began to emerge. Not only did the collection contain the complete run of the literary journal Sur, the issues had hand-written marginalia and annotations by its editor José Bianco. Among the treasures in the collection was a copy from a small 1968 print run of a French translation of “Historias de cronopios y de famas” by Julio Cortazar. In it, there is an inscription dedicated to José Bianco written by the author. Plaza and the staff who processed the collection came to realize that Jose Bianco also had a large part in the formation of the collection and that this personal library was in fact, a library that was built over time by both Hernández and Bianco. José Bianco, was a writer, essayist, translator, and as previously mentioned, the editor of the literary journal Sur. Plaza also listed some of his more well-known works. The collection not only contains an excellent selection of literary works that reflect the two authors’ areas of interest, these works are fully annotated with their comments that Plaza likened to a dialog with the books. Moreover, 250-300 of the books have inscriptions written on them by various well-known contemporary authors such as Victoria Ocampo and Carlos Fuentes. This shows that while Juan José Hernández and José Bianco may not have been the best known authors in Latin America or even within Argentina, they were respected and held in high regard by their more famous contemporaries. Plaza went over the timeline of the processing of the collection, which was renamed the “Juan José Hernández-José Bianco” Collection in 2010. In 2011, they received a grant from the Programa para Bibliotecas y Archivos Latinoamericanos (PLALA) to process the collection. From 2011-2012, the inscriptions were digitized and in 2013, conservation work was done on the most deteriorated books. From 2014-2015, the collection was cataloged and made available in their online catalog. Plaza demonstrated slides of some of the digitized book inscriptions as well as examples of the annotations that are found in many of the books. In light of the Brazilian theme of the conference, Plaza mentioned another valuable item in the collection, which is a copy of a memoir titled “Orgia” by Argentinian author Túlio Carella that was published in Brazil. Previously, the printing of this book had been considered a myth because no copies had ever been found. Plaza briefly mentioned three researchers of note who have extensively used the collection for their research. She also listed the names of the people who worked at different times on the various aspects of processing the collection. Out of the seven people who worked on it, 3 were permanent library staff and the rest were hired specifically for the processing of the collection. Part of the funding came from the PLALA grant and the rest came from the Torcuato Di Tella University. Plaza concluded by thanking PLALA for their funding, Karina Galperín and Fernando Rocchi for assessing the collection, and Ernesto Montequin, a librarian at Villa Ocampo, for helping to identify inscriptions and annotations.
During the question and answer session, Diana Restrepo (Biblioteca Luis Angel Arango) expressed her concern regarding the acquisition of the García Marquez archive by UT Austin. She felt that García Marquez’s family should have considered other Colombian institutions that could have housed the collection and have kept in mind the accessibility of the collection by the Colombian people. She also took the time to highlight her institution’s important literary collections, particularly two recent acquisitions that came from outside the country.
Hortensia Calvo (Tulane University) turned to José Montelongo (University of Texas, Austin) and commented that in his presentation, he seemed to imply that García Marquez’s family didn’t want to offer the archive to Colombia. Montelongo explained that the family approached the Harry Ransom Center while García Marquez’s was still alive. While it did not seem that the writer was opposed to the idea of his archive being entrusted to UT Austin, ultimately it was the decision of his widow and children. Montelongo reitirated that the collection would have been well taken care of and made accessible in a Colombian or Mexican institution. He also seemed to think that his family would have gotten more money by selling his archive to a Colombian institution or even to another institution in the United States, which made him come to the conclusion that the decision was not solely based on money. While money counts for a lot and motivates a lot of authors who made an intermittent living as freelancers, in the case of García Marquez’s family, there other reasons and motivations for trusting UT Austin over Latin American institutions.
Calvo expressed her appreciation for Montelongo’s presentation, considering how controversial a topic he was covering. As a Colombian, she understands the conflict that comes with being from Latin America working with Latin American collections in the United States. She also complimented him on the way he conveyed Colombia’s admiration for the late author by describing the scene at the Bogotá book fair. Montelongo explained that this topic has been discussed informally among SALALM members and is a sort of “elephant in the room,” so he felt that it was something that needed to be discussed more formally and openly. He wanted to emphasize that “trust” meant not just trusting the political stability of an institution’s country, but also trust that a collection will have reliable and continuous source of funding to preserve it for years to come.
Monday, June 15, 2015 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Moderator: Alison Hicks, University of Colorado, Boulder
Rapporteur: Melissa Gasparotto, Rutgers University
Sara Levinson, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Following the Clues and Getting Help from your Friends: Creating a Catalog Record for an Item Written Almost Entirely in a Language You Don’t Understand
Leif Adelson, Books from Mexico
Reflections on Why There Are So Few Digital Format Academic Titles in Mexico
Jesus Alonso-Regalado, SUNY/Albany
Crowdfunding and Collection Development
Lisa Gardinier, University of Iowa
Conversaciones con fanzineros: Collecting Zines in Latin America
D Ryan Lynch, Knox College
US LIbraries for Beginners: Library Instruction for ESOL students
Jorge Matos, Hostos Community College/CUNY
Latino Librarianship in a Predominately Latino Community College: Thoughts form a New Junior Faculty.
Ana Ramirez Luhrs, Lafayette College
Crossing the Border: Librarians in the Classroom Beyond Information Literacy
David Woken, University of Oregon
Human Rights and Genocide: Leveraging Academic Library Resources to Support Secondary Education
Sara Levinson, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Following the Clues and Getting Help from your Friends: Creating a Catalog
Record for an Item Written Almost Entirely in a Language You Don’t Understand
Building off of last year’s presentation on correcting and enhancing OCLC records, Levinson spoke about collaboration as a solution. In the previous year’s presentation she had used a problematic MARC record for an illustrated story demonstrating that the language was problematic and format was inaccurate. She was pretty sure it was a Mayan language but not sure which one. After returning from that conference, Levinson was contacted by another SALALM member, Ellen Jaramillo, who suggested a possible dialect, Tzotzil Maya, and developed a partial translation of title. Jaramillo found Princeton’s institutional record for the same item which somehow is not in OCLC. It’s also partially in Spanish. In that record, a proper name was mentioned and there was an authority file for him and he turned out to be a Tzotzil religious leader. Levinson edited the OCLC record and made changes to Princeton’s record, adding a “comics and graphic novels” heading and deleting an old incorrect heading for Huitzil readers. The final takeaway is that OCLC is only as good as the information that member institutions contribute to it and cooperation is key to the process.
Leif Adelson, Books from Mexico
Reflections on Why There Are So Few Digital Format Academic Titles in Mexico
Adelson noted that Mexican academic institutions produce the overwhelming majority of Mexican academic titles. There are independent houses that publish with academic publishing houses, too, but this is a small portion of production (less than 10% estimate by Adelson). There are other potential sources for digital publishing – author self publishing, small publishing outfits, NGOs, etc., but they lack the impetus and wherewithal to intervene in publishing digital monographs. Squeezed between forces, content producers must publish for academic stature while income pressures producers to make their writings available digitally. Also international electronic distributors approach publishers and offer money to publish those products on their format. But presses believe they should distribute publicly funded research for free. All are poorly equipped to conduct a cost benefits analysis. Given that this is a new field, it’s hard to calculate profit potential from free digital publications. Many academic publishers have been shielded from market pressures and don’t know how to transition to profit seeking digital publishing.
Many presses want to distribute in this way but rights management and technical platform considerations make things more complicated; plus, these conversations are slower to get moving in Mexico. Additionally, institutional academic publishers have a long history of non-bottom-line mentality. Generating revenue or being economically stable has not been part of equation.
There are opportunities (e.g., aggressive strategies in digitizing, publishing and publicizing through vendors) that could help alleviate economic pressures. Additionally, the government could issue standards for digital publications or create a national server for these digitized monographs. These things could put Mexico in front of today’s digital academic publishing trends.
Jesus Alonso-Regalado, SUNY/Albany
Crowdfunding and Collection Development
Alonso-Regalado made the distinction between this topic and fundraising for library-generated library projects. His project deals with generating revenue to fund projects outside the library (projects by authors or filmmakers that result in books or videos): the library helping to create items that they then collect. He sees this as a potential for libraries to be co-creators in the production of knowledge. He advocated for crowdfunding for creation of materials as a valid method of collection development, as many of these crowdfunding projects might not happen without library support.
How can librarians do this? Support may be provided via Kickstarter, Indiegogo, USEED. Alonso-Regalado uses same collection development criteria with these projects as he would for other more traditional collection development decisions, such as reading project description, etc. Many times, supporting the crowdfunded project is the only way you can acquire these limited edition items, but any library, large or small, can afford this. However, fund management and structure might be problematic. In Kickstarter you put in chargecard but you don’t pay until the project reaches its goal. But what if that creator never finishes the item/project.? The creator must work that out with funders. You can advocate for these things even if you’re not doing it directly, and have someone else back the project and donate the resulting items.
Alonso-Regalado talked about four projects he had backed in this way.The book Invisible Immigrants Spaniards in the US 1868-1945, and the films Papa Machete, Memories of Guantanamo, and Save our film: la ciudad.
Lisa Gardinier, University of Iowa
Conversaciones con fanzineros: Collecting Zines in Latin America
Gardinier had been collecting zines from Latin America for last 3 years. Zines are generally self-published with intention of being serial, and they are often personal.
The acquisition of zines typically requires an informal method of collecting. For example, attending “La Otra FIL” in Guadalajara, which happens in conjunction with the larger book fair, but at another site. Sometimes zines come to her in Iowa in the form of visiting artists who can either donate their own works or put her in touch with others. Social events can lead to collecting opportunities, and she has had lots of conversations with fanzineros about why she was collecting and the value of exerting effort to build these collections. One of the most important parts of building a collection like this is building relationships, showing creators that people care and that this material is important. The work represents voices that are otherwise unheard and so these materials belong in an academic library. These materials are getting the same treatment as any other acquisition format. Since they’re inexpensive, budget is not much of a problem.
Q&A for first half of the panel
Jade Mischler of Tulane asked Alonso-Regalado how he finds out about these projects. Is he in Kickstarter searching, or does searching elsewhere lead him to Kickstarter? He answered that both were the case.
Daisy Dominguez of City College asked Alonso-Regalado if he had supported a project that was unsuccessful and how did that look to library administrators? He did back a project that ultimately failed but they tried again. His support of these projects was a proof of concept so he used his own money and donated books.
AJ Johnson of UT-Benson asked if Alonso-Regalado had looked into any music projects on Kickstarter. He answered that he hadn’t seen projects for Latin American music. He added that other platforms for crowdsourcing allow you to connect things to development office of the university. If your library doesn’t want to do it, you can try to convince your constituents to do it and donate toward the item.
Miguel Valladares of University of Virginia asked Gardinier if she was collecting zines from Spain? She answered yes, but unintentionaly. They’re very transnational She can find one country’s publications in another. For example Spanish anarchist zines from the late 90s are still floating around Latin America with prices in Pesetas. They get photocopied over and over and redistributed.
David Woken of University of Oregon noted that he had tried crowdfunding and backs a lot personally. People may present themselves well but there may be problems after the fact. For example, one video project on racism that he has personally backed is taking a long time and getting lots of criticism from other documentary makers for failing to secure proper permissions, You don’t know if the product will be made ethically. Alonso-Regalado responded that this is a question of trust and that if they fail it will affect their reputation. He added that he will alert SALALM members if/when he identifies other projects of interest.
D Ryan Lynch, Knox College
US LIbraries for Beginners: Library Instruction for ESOL students
How do you engage students in academic support resources at your college or university? How do you overcome perceived or real barriers preventing access to resources like the library or tutoring? Lynch is the library liaison for all non-departmental centers and offices (e.g., Center for Teaching and Learning, Global Studies) and spoke about involvement with IELP (Intensive English Language Program) a two-week summer bridge program for international students who need extra language and writing skills to help them get a jump start before semester. This was the college’s very first summer bridge program, and part of the VPAA initiative to focus on retention and success. It was approved at the last minute so there was little time to prepare.
The ½ credit program consisted of six hours of English language and writing instruction each day for ten days. Instruction was delivered by Center for Teaching and Learning and peer writing tutors. The library provided 4 short sessions (two times each week of the program). The library sessions were scheduled for the end of the day and students were inevitably exhausted by the time they arrived. The goals for library sessions were to cover the physical space, the librarians, library resources including I-share, helping students understand the differences between types of information, where to look, and search strategies.
Lynch sought feedback on expectations, constructive criticism and information on student engagement with resources on campus, conducting six semi-structured interviews over 7-8 hours. When asked why they chose to participate in the program, most said they had gaps in English and/or lacked confidence. Some students wanted to get to know the town, some wanted to meet people and others wanted to get an edge. One student remarked that for “every international student no matter how well you are prepared you are still underprepared.”
Five out of six students had come to the reference desk and half had sent their friends to the desk. Every student had remembered every skill covered in the four library sessions. Five out of six had used tutoring and three had referred their friends. They sent their friends to people they were familiar with. All students were positive about the program, but they were a particularly highly motivated group and perhaps not representative. Lynch concluded that this was a nice model for helping less acculturated students become more acclimated to and more engaged with support.
Jorge Matos, Hostos Community College/CUNY
Latino Librarianship in a Predominately Latino Community College: Thoughts form a New Junior Faculty.
Matos began by presenting demographics of Hostos at a glance: 60% of students are Latino, and many are West Indian, as well. 65% are women, ¾ of students live in households earning less than $30k/year. Half are the first generation to attend college, and 1/3 continue on to 4 year institutions. The college serves lots of working mothers and other working students. These facts aren’t always obstacles and can sometimes add to the educational experience. Hostos was founded in 1968 through political pressure/advocacy, and located in old abandoned tire factory. There were no labs, pool, theater or gym. The 1975-7 Save Hostos campaign, in response to a decision to close the school and merge it with Bronx Community College, was a major turning point in the school’s history. Students, faculty and the community participated in mass demonstrations and engaged in civil disobedience. Supporters took over the Grand Concourse for a whole afternoon and brought classrooms into the street. In a strategy to bring national attention and establishment press to focus on the issue, they occupied the college for 20 days and the New York State Assembly eventually conceded to protests. These actions lead to the saving of the college and its continued development into what it is today. Hostos is a service-oriented institution and during his first year Matos participated in traditional reference and instruction, bilingual services and interaction with students and staff. Many students are recent immigrants. Sonia Sotomayor’s mother graduated from the college in the 70s with a degree in nursing.
Matos concluded with observations from first year. The current challenges include funding and space issues, library instruction and outreach to faculty (there is limited library staff), services to students with disabilities (modern adaptive technologies are a challenge), the increasing role of community college as site of workforce development and remedial education. Community colleges may be seen as an institution of last resort of lower income and communities of color or the disabled; this is a national trend.
Ana Ramirez Luhrs, Lafayette College
Crossing the Border: Librarians in the Classroom Beyond Information Literacy
Lafayette College is a small 4 year liberal arts college with approximately 2,000 students in Eastern Pennsylvania. The student body is mostly middle to upper-middle class and caucasian and Ramirez Luhrs serves as an advisor to Hispanic students at the college. She partnered with a LAS historian who works on Argentina and is interested in issues on gender and diversity on campus. They taught a class on these issues in 2013. The History 275 course was a 50/50 shared collaboration so Ramirez Luhrs was a teacher as well as embedded librarian. The course was organized around the themes “moving, mapping and telling.” Harvest of Empire was their main text and an anchor for all class discussions.
Ramirez Luhrs discussed the resources she used during each of the class themes.
This theme explored Mexican migrant workers in US (going back to Treaty of Guadalupe), and the Brazero program. It was important to use primary sources and teach visual literacy. The novel’s Mother Tongue and Drown were used for this theme. A few Latino students on campus self-selected for the class. Some were Dominican so the instructors added the Junot Diaz book to relate more.
Ramirez Luhrs is interested in the politics of Latino immigration, so the class took a deep look at the Census and its history of representation of Hispanics and Latinos through the years. She also used Pew Hispanic Center as a resource because she wanted to give students a chance to access good data that doesn’t need to be crunched too much.
Anzaldua’s Borderlands was used in support of this theme. Ramirez-Luhrs taught students how to use governmental primary sources to research law. Students completed an assignment on legislation and gave presentations on the immigration propositions in CA and AZ, which were current events at the time. Other texts used included Frontera, The Circuit and Becoming American.
Lafayette has special collections with related content, including protest posters on anti-immigration policies, and these are used as teaching materials.
Students produced a document: 10 Things Every US Citizen Should Know about Latin American Immigration. Her students held an “Immigration Week,” and worked to get the campus community to think about human rights issues and immigration.
The co-teaching partnership brought the students into the library and lead to them telling their friends. The other professor feld that better quality assignments were turned in. A further outcome was that the students no longer had barriers about going into the library.
David Woken, University of Oregon
Human Rights and Genocide: Leveraging Academic Library Resources to Support Secondary Education
Woken presented on his involvement in a workshop that the University of Oregon hosted for secondary teachers, about human rights and genocide prevention. Lectures exhibits and workshops were conducted for both faculty and high school teachers as part of a grant-funded program.
The program wanted to bring in lots of disciplines to help people think about how they might teach about human rights, and the teacher workshop topics included:
- Gendered violence and impunity: Bangladesh and Mexico
- Teaching human rights in Latin America: problems sources and methods (Woken co-taught with a professor in the History Department
- Art and human rights in Latin America: pedagogical approaches
- The thirst for human rights and the struggle for water in Latin America and Africa
Woken’s workshop covered repressive states of the Cold War era. He built an online guide for university instructors, modified to emphasize open access materials (primarily in English). Both he and the faculty co-teacher wanted students to seek a critical understanding of human rights. For example, Woken highlighted online truth and reconciliation documents, and how to think about the limitations of these documents.
Challenges and Lessons:
- Provide useable information about a range of different cases while not oversimplifying
- Avoid stereotyping
- Deal with complexity of human rights as a concept itself
- Provide teachers information that they can work with and giving them a positive example with which to work
- Working within the restraints high school teachers face
- Not stereotyping the teachers (It turned out that many of the teachers were Latinos, and Spanish language resources could have been useful)
AJ Johnson, UT-Benson, asked Woken if there had been a follow-up from the teachers and if he had promoted the teaching of online primary sources. Woken answered that lots of contacts were made, which has been very positive. He added that there was a trend in common core to encourage primary source reading, and that he did discuss them, including the Archivo Policia Guatemala.
Moderator: Daisy V. Domínguez, The City College of New York, CUNYRapporteur: Peter S. Bushnell, University of Florida
Georgette Dorn, Hispanic Division, Library of CongressThe Hispanic Division in the Development of Latin American Studies : a historical review
Katherine McCann, Hispanic Division, Library of CongressPortraying Latin America : The Cândido Portinari murals in the Hispanic Reading Room
Debra McKern, Library of Congress, Rio de Janeiro OfficeWeb archives in the Hispanic Division
Tracy North, Hispanic Division, Library of CongressThe Handbook of Latin American Studies : a gateway to doing research in the Library of Congress collections
In 1939, the Hispanic Foundation at the Library of Congress was founded with Lewis Hanke as director. He had been at Harvard and brought with him the “Handbook of Latin American Studies” which had begun three years earlier with a corps of contributing editors and support from the American Council of Learned Societies. By 1927, Archer Huntington had provided funds for a first-rate Hispanic collection at the Library of Congress along with funds to support a “curator” or specialist in Hispanic culture.
Lewis Hanke was director until 1951 and during that time special emphasis was placed on building collections in the humanities and the arts. In 1943, the Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape was begun with Francisco Aguilera as curator. Initially preserving readings by poets from Spain and Latin America it expanded over the years to include Portuguese, Catalan, Francophone (Haitian), Anglophone (Jamaican and Belizean) writers.
Howard Cline was appointed director in 1952 and held the position until 1971. Bringing an emphasis on the social sciences and the pre-Columbian world, he prepared the 18- volume “Handbook of Middle American Indians” as well as a number of other wide ranging publication including “Soviet writings on Latin America” as well as the first “National Directory of Latin Americanist”. In 1956, two important organizations were founded, SALALM (supported by the Hispanic Foundation) and the Latin American Studies Association (LASA). The Foundation hosted the first LASA meeting and housed the association headquarters until 1972. Another important event during the Cline years was the establishment if the Rio Office, with Earl Pariseau, Assistant Director of the Foundation as the first Field Director.
In 1973, the Hispanic Foundation was renamed Hispanic Division and Mary Kahler became the director. A Brazilianist, she oversaw the publication of leadership guides to the Harkness Mexico and Kraus collections of manuscripts.
In 1978, William E. Carter, an anthropologist (from the University of Florida) became Director of the division. The Division continued to support SALALM, LASA, AHA and other organizations. The third “National Directory of Latin Americanists” was also published during Carter’s tenure.
Library scholar Sara Castro-Klaren was the director from 1984 to 1986 and pioneered a library wide exhibition to celebrate the anniversary of Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra’s “La Galatea”.
Political science scholar Cole Blasier, who helped to found LASA, served as director from 1988-1982 and initiated the automation of the “Handbook of Latin American Studies”. Two specialist positions were also created, Ieda Wiarda for Luso-Brazilian studies and Barbara Tenenbaum for Mexico.
Georgette Dorn became head of the Hispanic Division in 1994 and instigated the retrospective conversion of the “Handbook’s” first 49 volumes into machine-readable format. With support from the Andrew J. Mellon Foundation and the Fundación MAPFRE in Spain, CD-ROMS of the first 49 years were produced in Spain. The Hispanic Division is now beginning to integrate the CD-ROMs into the Voyager system. Dorn also served as the curator of the Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape after 1970 and recorded 470 writers for the archive. Currently with the help of Catalina Gómez, 50 of the writers will be mounted in the Library’s website.
Cândido Portinari was born in São Paulo into a large Italian family. He started painting at an early age and eventually went to Paris to study. In Paris he met the Uruguayan artist María Martinelli who became his wife. Later in his career, her better knowledge of English helped tremendously.
After returning to Brazil, he began to make a name for himself, and by 1939 had works on display in the Brazilian pavilion at the New York World’s Fair. Most of his subject matter concerned the workers and natural resources of Brazil. By this time, President Roosevelt’s Good neighbor policy was in effect and the Office of Inter-American Affairs sponsored a conference in 1939 to promote cultural exchange within the Americas. When asked to have an exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York, Portinari asked to have as much space as they had given Picasso.
By this time, Archibald MacLeish had been named Librarian of Congress (with some opposition from the ALA since he was not a librarian). With the support of the Hispanic Division and other agencies involved in inter-American relations, photographers, film studios (including Disney), etc. became involved in promoting relations within the Americas.
Although wall decorations had been planned for the Hispanic Reading Room at the Library of Congress, by 1940, the walls were still bare. MacLeish then invited Portinari to paint some murals. Portinari was already familiar with the space. With support from the Brazilian government and $2500 from the U.S. government, work was initiated. Portinari kept the theme to that of the Spanish and Portuguese in America rather than having anything too Avant Garde. There are a total of four murals in the reading room. Unfortunately, this summary cannot include the illustrations shown during Katherine McCann’s presentation which included working sketches, finished murals and other pictures of interest.
Web archiving is a fairly new activity in the library world. Beginning in 2000, the Library of Congress began a pilot project to collect and preserve websites. Then in 2003 the International Internet Preservation Consortium (IIPC) was formed. The archiving at the Rio de Janeiro Office of the Library of Congress is the first for all of Latin America.
Before a collection is actually archived, a proposal is submitted with the following elements: Sponsor and Custodial Division, Nominators & Reviewers, Scope, Collection Period, Number & Types of Sites, Theme and Selection Plan. Reviewers include outside colleagues. More than one viewpoint is desired. Once a proposal has been made, the nomination has seven criteria to meet: Frequency of Capture, Subject, Justification (e.g., geography coverage), Urgency, Category, Site Owner Contact Information, Permission Plan. One of the first collections created by the LC Rio Office dealt with the 2010 presidential elections. The collection period was easily defined and because of the nature of information gathered, there was often no site owner contact information to be obtained. Information was gathered weekly since website content would change constantly. However, for the collection of Cordel literature, owner contact was required along with permissions since the various sites could be traced to an individual person or entity. As a sidelight, the percentage of Cordel authors who are women, is greater online than in print.
Currently, the LC Webarchives can only be viewed at LC itself. One future topic of interest is serials. These are not all covered by other sources and much work needs to be done to make sure the whole content is preserved.
The Handbook of Latin American Studies (HLAS) has been published since 1936. It consisted of a selective annotated bibliography with introductory essays. The disciplinary coverage was quite broad with changes over times. Contributing editors came from universities and research institutions in the United States and throughout the world. There is now a web site in addition to print volumes.
The contents of the HLAS include: books, journal articles (core list of 350 or so), book chapters, conference papers, web sites, maps and atlases. Publications can come from all over the world. Primary languages covered have been Spanish, English and Portuguese but French, German, Italian, Russian, etc. have also been included.
Even though nearly everything in the HLAS is in LC, not everything in LC is included in the HLAS. All incoming titles from Latin America, Spain and Portugal are considered. Subject headings used for records in print follow the Library of Congress Subject Heading list provided online. There is a close relationship between the HLAS and the research orientation of the Hispanic Reading Room.
Two web sites have begun to contain large data conversion projects. HLAS web started with vol. 49 and has proceeded to work backward. So far vols. 46-49 have been added.
The Library of Congress also hosts HLAS Online. HLAS Online began with vol. 50 and continues with the current issues.
Some of the digitized collections at LC include:
Chronicling America. Spanish language newspapers
Prints and photographs online catalog. Archive of Hispanic Culture
Maps and atlases.
Sound recordings. Hispanic, Latino and Latin American authors
World digital library. Precolumbian manuscripts.
The current web address for the HLAS is: www.loc.gov/hlas
Soon it will be: www.loc.gov/rr/hispanic/
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Moderator: Adán Griego
Rapporteur: Daniel Schoorl
Introductions for the speakers were made by Adán Griego (moderator); who also mentioned the influence of SALALM members on e-book pricing.
Sara Casalini – Casalini Libri (Italy)
Demonstrated how to access Casalini scholarly e-content at www.casalini.it and described the single title acquisition model and approval selection plans. Both e-books and print books are visible in the Casalini database. Also a new full-text platform launched by Casalini is available at www.torrosa.it
Lluís Claret – Digitalia Publishing
Digitalia, founded in 2007, continues to grow and has launched new products in 2014, which includes new e-book readers, public library products, and a film library. Multiple databases are represented including many product lines with an emphasis on the humanities and social sciences but also adding more sciences. Digital acquired the publisher Calambur Editorial, which was established in 1991.
Fernando Genovart – Ventara García Cambeiro
Ventara continues to focus on academic libraries in the United States while the Argentine publishing industry wants to gain access to the North American market but perpetual access is still a great concern. Discussed disadvantages of e-resources as relating to high prices and ownership of materials and emphasized that collaboration is key to the survival of traditional book vendors and e-resource companies. Advocates for more trust between libraries/librarians, vendors, and digital publishers.
Leslie Lees – E-libros
Framed the talk as a paradigm shift in the information environment as relating to e-books and libraries. E-libros has 30,000 e-books available for subscription or purchase from Latin America and Spain. The ebrary platform is used by elibros and also García Cambeiro, which allows for simple management of content and includes various business models. Elibros has over 600 publisher partners and offers subscription models for different content at manageable units with varying costs. E-libros is now offering 12 subject collections and a newly added Religion and Philosophy collection, as well as a public library collection with 10,000 e-books. There are multiple purchase options including a rent-to-buy model.
Frank Smith – JSTOR
Demand driven acquisition allows for customized profiles and a seamless user experience. In partnership with OCLC, JSTOR offers MARC records and preservation of e-books and e-journals with Portico. JSTOR is currently working with around 80 publishers in Latin America, including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru; and is in talks with another two dozen publishers in the region. Around 30% of all searches that end at JSTOR content start at JSTOR, so many users are coming in from other resources.
Wayne Bivens-Tatum – Princeton University (religion and philosophy bibliographer)
Improving the user experience and helping make acquisitions easier for libraries is key. Expressed opposition to artificial restrictions on any type of material but with e-books especially and would not advocate for buying single user licenses. Wants the market to be friction free; barriers to e-books can discourage use, this is especially the case in public libraries. E-book vendors must support academic libraries with interlibrary loan (ILL) and chapter level e-book lending should be widely available. Amazon has fostered the myth that e-books should be cheap but equal pricing for print and e-books is recommended. Sales for resources in the U.S. in 2014: 510 million e-books, 568 million hardcovers, and 542 million paperbacks. Notes that e-books are not diminishing traditional sales; consumers still want print.
Moderator: Luis A. González (LG)
Jeremy Adelman, Princeton (JA)
David Magier, Princeton (DM)
Michael Stoller, NYU (MS)
Steven W. Witt, UIUC (SW)
Luis González (LG)’s introduction: Today we witness a roundtable discussion on campus internationalization and its impact on the research library. Our four panelists have been deeply involved in campus internationalization initiatives on their campuses. Jeremy Adelman (JA) is a scholar of Latin American and World History at Princeton and was the chair of the President’s Advisory Committee on Internationalization, about the impact of globalization on the university. As a scholar he is a Latin Americanist expanding into world history and globalization. David Magier (DM) is Associate University Librarian for Collection Development and the acting Associate University Librarian for Research and Instructional Services, acting South Asian Studies Librarian at Princeton, and has also served as director of the Center for Human Rights Documentation and Research at Columbia University. Michael Stoller (MS) is the Associate Dean for Collections and Research Services at NYU’s division of libraries. He came to NYU in 2001 and has been involved in promoting new modes of scholarly communications and has worked with NYU campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai and their 12 global academic centers. He has a Ph.D. in Medieval History from Columbia University. Steven Witt (SW) is head of the International and Area Studies Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and was the Associate Director of the Center for Global and International Studies at UIUC before that. We had in mind a lively, dynamic conversation about this topic, based in a set of questions and a couple of shared readings to have a shared background from which to approach the subject. From time to time we will open up the floor for questions and comments from the audience. First we will ask each presenter to talk about two significant international initiatives at their institutions.
MS: I will mention the initiatives at our global campuses, especially the two “Portal” (Bachelor-degree granting) campuses in Shanghai and Abu Dhabi. It has been challenging to build a support network for these global sites, and to negotiate how we build a campus in different scholarly, political, and cultural context, as well as getting students access to NYU paper materials in a timely manner (within 48 hours). The second initiative would be the development of three digital projects with global scope. First, the Afghanistan Digital Library project digitizing all published material in Afghanistan from its origin in 1871 to the 1930s, the first time that this material has been available publicly in the world, as it had been gathered by individual Afghan scholars. We set up a conservation and digitization lab at the national archives in Kabul and sent staff there. This effort has faced serious military challenges. Second, we developed the NYU Hemispheric Institute’s digital video library to document performance used as a political tool throughout the Americas and to build teaching tools and research tools in conjunction with institutions across the hemisphere. The third and most recent initiative has been the Arabic Collections Online, which has as its goal to digitize as much out-of-copyright Arabic material (25,000-30,000 volumes up to about 1955) so they can be put online to make them publicly accessible. We have worked with Princeton University, Columbia University, Cornell University, the American University in Beirut, and the American University in Cairo. This has meant interacting with people around the world, especially at their Abu Dhabi campus, which spearheaded this project.
SW: I will start first with campus-level internationalization. First has been the rapid increase of international students, especially undergrads, while the graduate student population has stayed consistent. The campus now has the largest number of international students of any public university. Many of them are from East Asia (especially China), often first-generation students, but they also bring different cultural expectations of universities and libraries, and different expectations of what they will do after graduation. The library works closely with our campus international office to make sure someone from the International and Area Studies library is part of every event for international students. This seems to have been a good first step. At the same time the library is serving rapidly growing ESL services and classes, so they are now training their graduate students how to work with these ESL students. We also must think about how we should adjust out international collections to serve these students (do we need to be sure we have adequate primary source materials in East Asian or South Asian languages, for example?). The second point is typical of what many other campuses are going through, that with each new strategic plan we get more new initiatives and goals. One new goal at UIUC is an emphasis on global impact in everything we do, promoting more international research collaboration and more global understanding. This is challenging in the library because the university president and provost are from STEM, on a heavily STEM campus, but area studies librarians are not typically used to working with STEM projects. So we see more Japanese travel and collaboration (my background is Japanese studies) from STEM than from humanities or the social sciences, and librarians must be able to support these types of initiatives.
DM: Here at Princeton the programmatic interest in foreign material and research abroad long pre-dates my work, and is reflected in the library collections. Historically this has been more focused in some disciplines than others. My focus will be in the library rather than broader campus initiatives. Internationalization can mean many different things to different people, from mere lip service to serious brick and mortar engagements (like NYU’s) to the increasingly international campus population. In more traditional area studies projects for the longest time international work was not envisioned as a collaborative endeavor, but instead focused on what we could acquire here at Princeton for our scholars and students. But in recent years I have been putting more emphasis on collaboration with other libraries or institutions in other areas. One example of this is a project responding to an endangered collections scenario in Yemen, a vast collection of manuscripts by a particular minority in Yemen whose identity, political and physical existence, and archives were physically in danger. So an international consortium of scholars and libraries worked with leaders from the group to get training and equipment from Princeton under an NEH grant out to Yemen to work on digitizing private family collections and putting them up on the internet. This project was very collaborative, and we can think of this as technology transfer (computers, cameras, training) and collaborative collections. The second project is the digitization of Latin American ephemera. This is international collaboration because it is starting with Princeton’s forty-five year collection of ephemera from Latin America, which we gathered and then sold in microfilm copies, but has moved to digitizing these microfilms and making them available open access (and so useable in Latin America). To follow up the theme of changing demographics on campus, we are changing services on campus (orientations) and finding students coming to Princeton to get expertise that they will then bring to their home country, often in fields outside typical area studies expertise like politics, policy, international affairs, and especially engineering. We now have to rethink how engineering collects materials in various languages, and get more information on the economics, politics, etc. of engineering, so engineering has now broken from science in the library and is located with our specialists in area studies. This was a deliberate move to foster synergies between global studies and engineering.
JA: Starting off, I am not a librarian so I am commenting from having worked on the design for the overall international plan for the university and as a teacher and scholar using the library. To look at this question “from above,” as departments came to me as the Chief Academic Officer overseeing the globalization of the university for seven years, they treated the library as an afterthought in how they imagined their global ventures were going to occur. I met with DM several times to figure out how we could press the library into the core of how departments and units imagined how they were doing teaching and research in the initiatives they were planning. To pivot to a couple of examples of how we are trying to do this “from below:” people think of internationalization as going out into the world, but libraries tend to be fixed points in particular locations even as universities are being deterritorialized (unless they are creating branch campuses like NYU; Princeton has chosen instead to emphasize networks and partnerships). So I could proliferate the number of metaphors that we draw on to think about the library (“hubs,” “bridges,” etc.). One way I got involved was in designing a MOOC. Princeton was one of the first co-signatories in the formation of Coursera, and mine was the first pilot humanities course, a global history survey taught to Princeton students in this room and broadcast to about 100,000 students worldwide. It took a while to figure out how essential the library was to this, especially the staff. The bigger example is something a few of us have been trying to develop, and that Fernando Acosta [Princeton University] and I have been thinking about with the Latin American ephemera collection is to think about the library radiating out into the world. So working with Fernando I am developing a course based on the ephemera collection, combining it with my research and the outreach work that the Program on Latin American Studies does that brings in Latin American scholars as visiting fellows. These fellows traditionally were not necessarily working with the library. It would be an accident if we had someone apply wanting to work with the ephemera collection, it was not baked into the design of the fellows program. We are now moving to a course that integrates students, the collection, and a visiting scholar working together in collaboration with Fernando and I.
LG: Now that we have done the overview of the programs and have in a way touched on the second question, let’s focus on the challenges that you have faced with these program and the achievements that you have had.
MS: One of the complexities of doing anything global is the pragmatics and practicalities of what’s involved in the process: the hardest part of building a library in Shanghai was getting the books into China while avoiding the censors. We figured out how to do that (we would test censorship by sneaking in material on Tibetan resistance, for example). Some of the biggest challenges are just moving people around in a global world, though we think of the world as being smoothly, effortlessly global, getting a Chinese national living in the U.S. a visa to return to China, or getting a scholar to Dubai who has spoken out about labor abuse, can be quite difficult. Challenges of getting the Afghan digitization and conservation program set up with all of the challenges of negotiating government, security difficulties, etc. We have to work with cultures that get things done in very different ways, with different ideas of what is scholarship, what parts of American culture they do or do not want (how to work in Dubai or Shanghai without it being an imperial project). We in the libraries who have been working with other parts of the world for decades were in some ways ahead of the game. We have learned a lot from exchange programs, LC’s work abroad, etc.
SW: We deal with the challenges of trying to engage more deeply with our campus, especially those in the library working in area studies. We need to show how the library is and has been engaged in area studies, but also to highlight the deep expertise within the library side by side with what a huge capital investment the library has been. We have created an International Teaching Engagement Committee, Antonio Sotomayor [UIUC] is the chair, where we work in collaboration with faculty on campus doing interesting research that might transcend regions or follow on major world events with talks on the topic in the area studies library with local experts (so we had one with about 110 people in attendance about the Ukraine crisis). We call this “Chai Wai,” a South Asian phrase for tea and conversation, and it has been quite a success getting people from across campus and in the community and introducing to the people and resources in the library. We also did another event with our new Associate Provost for International Affairs so this person would know that the library is a central player involved in international projects and so would include us in new initiatives. Essentially we showed a range of international activities we were doing, ranging from work with engineers at Kyushu University to intense involvement of the libraries in UIUC’s international policies. We also put together a GIS map of the librarians’ travel internationally over the last year, which shows so much activity (conferences, research, collections trips, consultations, etc.) all over the globe, and how we are a part of dynamic campus international projects.
DM: I will try to briefly focus on a couple of challenges we have faced of different types. We had to face almost cinematic challenges with the Yemeni project, involving a conflict zone, the fact we couldn’t bring the Yemenis to the U.S. because of visa problems, we couldn’t send our digitization experts and metadata cataloging experts to Yemen because the State Department wouldn’t allow U.S. citizens to go there. We had to meet through our partner in Berlin, but once the digitization tools got to Yemen we had a range of problems we never anticipated. How do you get the data (high-resolution TIFF images of manuscripts along with initial metadata created by the librarians in that country) back to where they are going to be placed on the internet (Princeton)? We cannot fit enough information on a disc, we need a hard drive, but those needed to be shipped and all international shipping agencies shut down in Yemen. The internet was no help, internet in Yemen couldn’t handle that much data. Even the U.S. embassy couldn’t move the data we needed. This meant one time needing to send a $60,000 replacement camera through a friend of a friend of a friend traveling as a student going to Yemen through Berlin, etc. Other challenges arise in the sphere of moving content, allowing scholars and students access to content when abroad. For example, the Princeton Global Seminars abroad with Princeton students and scholars co-teaching and working with students in host countries have problems because while Princeton affiliates can access library material, non-Princeton participants do not get that access, which limits the collaboration they want to have with host institutions. We had to work out how to get around this commercial limitation on the flow of information. Another limit has to do with interlibrary collaboration/sharing, where many vendors limit our ability to lend internationally (we can ILL in the U.S. but not abroad, which limits international collaboration possibilities).
JA: I could tell more stories from getting things into MOOC platforms, which libraries have trouble with. Speaking as faculty, the faculty have difficulty thinking of the library inside of what we do. The “natives” think of the library as a place they go to get the volume they need, and most don’t realize that their digital materials come through the library, they think of JSTOR as this disembodied space that they go to that has all of this journal content. The conversations I would have when I was provost with faculty about how they design a project and I would mention the work this would bring to DM here, it had not occurred to them, and that is a big problem. I was not successful in expanding this understanding, so my goal has been to further the conversation through example, showcase models where the library is baked into the teaching and research they do. We will see how that goes. There are incredible practicalities, but also major conceptual issues, a mind-shift, that are at stake, and there has been a lag on campuses about that.
LG: That’s the point of this panel, to see how teaching faculty’s perspectives and librarians’ perspectives can dialog, to see how we can support the work that you do. Perhaps at this time we can entertain some questions or comments from the audience.
Barbara Tennenbaum (Library of Congress): JA, can you give us an example of where a “mind-shift” needs to take place.
JA: I am challenged on this, I can say faculty treat the library as a passive and not an active agent, particularly because the vocabulary and “grammar” of internationalization sees the library as a fixed space, even though it is not, while everything else is to be put into hyper-mobility. We have created a unit within the History Department called the Global History Lab dedicated to new models and experimentation in teaching and learning in which the library is part. The library is part of the redesigning of the MOOC, and the Lab will put up some of the resources for my collaboration with Fernando using the Latin American Ephemera collection. I think maybe five years from now we will have some examples of where the library is an integral part of what students encounter in the university rather than an afterthought.
DM: A mindset that I think should change, and that would lead to good results, is a faculty member who is going to be in country X for research will think of “their” librarian as a person who will get them a specific object. But if their librarian is an area studies librarian, or the relevant librarian for their subject as an area specialist, they would realize they have lots of contacts with librarians and archives in the country where they are going. The faculty doing research think they know everything about the libraries and archives they need to visit, how to get what they need when they are there when in fact they only have a piece of the information and the relevant librarian would know a lot more.
JA: To jump in, the worst infractions are not from the faculty, they are from the graduate students, that is where you really see the missing conversation.
SW: To expand on the World History Lab idea, UIUC founded its Slavic Research Lab in 1974 with State Department support. Since then slavicists from around the world come there, and all of those researchers work one-on-one with a Slavic Studies librarian before they come, while they are there, and after they leave. It remains powerful even as the State Department has been cutting back on research support in Slavic Studies/Russia. UIUC would like to try to get similar projects in other areas, but this kind of center took generations to come together.
MS: When NYU’s scholars travel around the world, they expect their librarians to move with them. We had this pipe dream of effortlessly moving books around the world, which we can sort of do but it is expensive ($60 to send a book overnight to Abu Dhabi). We have found many faculty who go to work at Abu Dhabi or Shanghai build/gather data then assume they will effortlessly get that data into their high-performance platforms, and do not realize the challenges of moving data (it is hard to stream video between New York and Abu Dhabi, for example). Also, they do not understand that U.S. copyright does not travel with them, and wonder why they cannot post a chapter or article for students when they are in, for example, Germany (where fair use rights are less strong than in the U.S.). On the other hand, less restrictive copyright in Arab countries (where copyright goes up to 1955, or even 1970 in some cases) allowed NYU to go much farther with their digitization projects than they could in other countries. Librarians are especially well equipped to understand these kinds of issues, and to prepare faculty for the practical challenges they will face in other countries.
LG: The third question is about a somewhat contradictory phenomenon. We have a growing population of international students, new international campuses like NYU’s, but at the same time there is evidence that U.S. social science is increasingly parochial. Are we becoming globally parochial, or parochially global?
MS: A contrast I often make is that in the early years of the Cold War the U.S. government rationally decided that it was good for Americans to know more foreign languages, to foster research and education in international studies (PL480, Title VI, etc.), but since 2001 the trend seems to have gone in the opposite direction. American universities have been passionate about international research and education, but the funding and infrastructure is not there. This “rational” response is gone, so we are going “international” without the infrastructure that the government and foundations like Ford or Rockefeller provided.
SW: I do not want to be cynical, but I would point out that Title VI was a Defense initiative responding to Sputnik, and the second biggest influx of government cash to area studies through Title VI was under George W. Bush. The animating force of area studies scholars is a desire to know more about the history or politics or culture of a people/country/region/etc., but the motivation of funders is to build a security wall around the U.S. Our scholars’ motives are different from their funders, so one person’s internationalization is different from another’s. Some funders are thinking that technologies can stand in for internationalization, Google can translate texts and we can rely on outsourced support from the countries we want to know about.
DM: This is a depressing part of the conversation, and I’m afraid I have to add to that depression. The motivation of international studies support has often been the need for material NOW, to be used now, and that is where assessment is these days, which has the implication of the destruction of the research library in the long term. To build a good research institution you need a base of material available for people to build on, even if it is not being used now. Within universities themselves (not just among outside funders) we see that short-term thinking, with universities undermining their own research. The “50,000 feet” view sees foreign language material as “low use,” but studies (Schadl and Todeschini “Cite Globally, Analyze Locally” for example) have shown that, if you look at the research being done locally, you see what the researchers are actually using. We have to convey this perspective to those who are looking at the library solely from that “50,000 foot” perspective.
MS: This thinking is in the library profession itself, as well, where we hear people refer to books as an “under-performing asset class.”
JA: That sounds like my hockey team.
MS: When I started evaluating library collections in 1985 a heavily used item was one that had been checked out once in the last five years. At Columbia University in the 1990s we managed a major off-site storage shift by using 1972 as the cut-off to send an item to storage, and we managed to move about 300,000 items off site, and that doesn’t mean that they aren’t valuable, either. But somehow that notion, that these items are not valuable, has made its way into the profession and I find that heartbreaking.
JA: I am not so pessimistic, I see a paradox where we have a mix of globalization and localization growing and complementing each other, going both ways. I can now teach from my laptop out to distant corners of the world. However, a problem I would underline is in the social sciences, the drift to thinking digitization and creation of large stores of data, frequently hosted in libraries, is a solution to our social problems, and therefore they do not have to move or have the encounters that are essential to internationalization.
DM: Another problem related to that is that this data is content, and someone has to host and distribute it. Most of the access to data is limited to the hosting institution and cannot be shared with others. How many duplicated collection of the same expensive, hard-to-maintain data can you create?
JA: Well, one effect of the paradox is stratification among globalizing institutions. Speaking as an economic historian, globalization always produces more global inequality, and libraries are exhibiting this.
LG: The fourth question is specifically about SW’s co-written article “Mapping Academic Libraries’ Contributions to Internationalization.” Can you briefly summarize your argument?
SW: The American Council of Education (ACE) does a survey of campus internationalization every five years, but their last one had not a single question about libraries, so some colleagues and I took ACE’s survey, modified it, and sent it out to libraries at selected four-year institutions, with ACE’s blessing. We got a decent response rate and learned that libraries are not on universities’ strategic plans for internationalization, and libraries are not thinking about how they can foster international work.
LG: One of the findings of the piece is that academic libraries have been doing a lot in many areas, from instruction to work with international studies programs to building collections to supporting high-level faculty research, but that work is not known at the high levels by people who set budgets and priorities for universities. How can we be better advocates for research libraries as equal partners in initiatives on our campuses?
DM: My experience is that university administrators see librarians coming and they hide because they know they are there to advocate for something (more money, etc.). That advocacy needs to be done by the libraries’ constituents, especially the faculty, so people like JA need to talk about the library with administrators. Librarians advocating directly to administrators for themselves does not work.
MS: For administrators faculty are the life of the institution. Administrators are far more likely to listen to faculty than librarians, so they need to speak on the library’s behalf. Librarians sound self-serving to administrators. If we do our job well faculty will speak on our behalf, if we do not they will complain about us. It is easier in humanities and social sciences than in natural sciences to do that advocacy.
JA: That’s the problem of public goods in the United States in general, the library is a dramatic example of the non-acknowledgment of the public goods that allow you to pursue private passions. The Council for International Teaching and Research which I founded at Princeton which oversees the process of Princeton’s globalization put in all of its calls for initiatives that create global partnerships a specific bullet that asks faculty to indicate how their project involves library resources and staff, but the proposals we received over my six years on that council never addressed that bullet because they don’t see the library in their work. The library has been successful at deterritorializing itself, but now the faculty don’t see what the library does. There is a narrative to be told about what it takes to run a twenty-first-century library and it needs to be brought to the attention of administrators and faculty. It’s very typical that ACE left the library out.
DM: So we’re victims of our own success.
MS: Some have said librarians need to explain to people how difficult it is to run a library and how complicated they are, but like with figure skaters you want to work with the one that makes it seem effortless.
LG: We have time for one question or comment from the audience.
Alison Hicks (University of Colorado, Boulder): One thing that hasn’t been talked about here is teaching and learning. Can you address teaching and how the library works in that?
JA: For my MOOC, we wanted the library active beyond the course packet or the reserves reading room, to be visible and involved so students saw how it provided the materials they used in the class, and we found that very hard. I also learned a lesson about how much could be done through the changing nature of the classroom itself, as a collaborative and interactive space rather than one where I am the teacher and the students are passive learners. The library plays a very cool role in this, Princeton’s ephemera collection can help to really change how we see the classroom works itself. I had taught in the Firestone Library, but we had not gotten hands-on with materials and broken stuff down. Having talked with science faculty about this, I see that the library can be a lab for humanities and social science students.
MS: As the university is more global, students don’t understand how much the globe is full of people who speak so many languages. Students come from high school without the linguistic skills to deal with these global topics; for example, they need to read Japanese to talk about attitudes of Japanese people to US in WWII, and don’t understand that.
SW: We are finding that with new global, interdisciplinary courses librarians have more opportunities to co-teach. In our new global studies minor there were several courses that librarians co-designed and co-taught. This is a trend that they embrace and will continue to do so.
LG: Thank you for coming today and sharing your thoughts on these interesting topics.
TagsAdán Griego Alison Hicks Anne Barnhart archives art audiovisual cataloging Committee Report David Block digitization documentaries Ellen Jaramillo Executive Board Meeting Minutes Fernando Acosta-Rodríguez Fernando Genovart Finance Committee Report Human Rights Interlibrary Cooperation Committee Report John B. Wright John Wright Lisa Gardinier Lluis Claret Lynn Shirey Marisol Ramos Meiyolet Mendez Melissa Gasparotto Melissa Guy Mexico Paloma Celis Carbajal Paula Covington Peter Johnson rapporteur reports Richard Phillips Roberto C. Delgadillo SALALM56 SALALM57 SALALM 58 SALALM58 SALALM59 SALALM60 Sarah Buck Kachaluba Sarah Yoder Leroy Suzanne M. Schadl Teresa Chapa Wendy Pederson