This article, published by the Universidad de Concepción, discusses an upcoming exchange between the Duke Libraries and several university libraries in Chile. The exchange will bring five librarians from Chile to Duke in March and April 2012 and four librarians from Duke to Chile in May 2012. All of the Chilean universities are in the Maule region which was affected by the earthquake last year. The exchange was arranged by our University Librarian, Deborah Jakubs with a grant from the Carnegie Corporation. I hope to report on the exchange at the Section meeting of LASA in May. If you have questions or suggestions for our Chilean colleagues, let me know.
Duke University Libraries announces the publication of the Marshall T. Meyer digital collection (available at http://library.duke.edu/digitalcollections/meyermarshall/ ) which documents the human rights activism of the Rabbi Marshall T. Meyer in 1970’s and 1980’s Argentina. The digital collection is a subset of the Marshall T. Meyer papers held at Duke University’s David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
Marshall Meyer was an activist rabbi who expounded a politically engaged Conservative Judaism. After being ordained rabbi in 1958, Meyer and his wife moved to Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1959, where they were to stay until 1984. Meyer led the re-invigoration of Argentina’s Jewish community and lived and fought through the political upheavals and turmoil of the 1970s and 1980s, openly speaking out against the human rights abuses perpetrated under the rule of the military junta, and visiting and attempting to secure the release of prisoners who were unlawfully incarcerated. After the return of democracy to Argentina in 1983, Argentine President Raul Alfonsin recruited Meyer to serve on the National Commission on the Disappearance of Persons (CONADEP in Spanish), which led a national investigation to establish the extent of the abuses suffered under the military junta.
Meyer returned to the United States in 1984 and took over the helm of congregation B’nai Jeshurun, reviving the decaying New York City synagogue and transforming it into a dynamic center for Judaism in the United States. Meyer advocated for inter-religious dialogue and peace efforts, the plight of marginalized groups within the United States, against human rights abuses in Central America (El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala), and for peace and respect for human rights in Israel and Palestine.
The items in the Marshall T. Meyer digital collection focus on his work in Argentina on behalf of human rights. Out of a total of over 64 linear feet of material in the Marshall T. Meyer papers, approximately 8 linear feet of paper documents were identified as particularly prescient for human rights history and research. These were digitized and individually cataloged and resulted in a digital collection of 1,025 items including correspondence, project files, subject files, publications, and other documents. The web portal allows researchers to access individual documents via subject, document type, date, language, and titles. Future enhancements to the collection will include addition of archival descriptions and access and the addition of a/v material.
The Marshall T. Meyer digital collection is complimented by two other digital initiatives: the Fondo Marshall Meyer (http://www.memoriaabierta.org.ar/bases/opac/fondos/meyer/index.html ) produced by Memoria Abierta and the on-line exhibit “I Have No Right to Be Silent, The Human Rights Legacy of the Rabbi Marshall T. Meyer” (http://exhibits.library.duke.edu/exhibits/show/ihavenorighttobesilent) produced by The Duke Human Rights Archive in partnership with the Duke Human Rights Center and the Center for Jewish Studies at Duke.
For more information, contact Patrick Stawski.
The Special Collections Library at Duke recently acquired the Frank Espada Photographs & Papers Collection, 1946-2010, containing over 16,000 items, primarily photographs, oral history interviews, and papers. Frank Espada migrated to NY from Puerto Rico with his family in 1939. A lifelong activist and community organizer, he began photographing the Puerto Rican struggle to survive in the United States in the late 1950s. From New England to Hawaii, Espada traces the Puerto Rican diaspora across the United States photographing work sites, migrant labor camps, family farms, urban neighborhoods, cultural events, political actions and activist organizations. He photographs and interviews Puerto Ricans who return to the island to retire or make a new start. Espada published his life’s work in 2006, The Puerto Rican Diaspora: Themes in the Survival of a People. The Espada collection contains all of the manuscript materials as well as other papers and correspondence.
Here is a 2009 New York Times review of an Espada exhibit and a link to the collection finding aid. If the Espada collection would support your teaching or research interests, contact Karen Glynn, Archive of Documentary Arts, 660.5968, firstname.lastname@example.org