Does It Matter
Have BLM Protests Opened Spaces for Collective Action in LAMs?
The catalytic social justice events of the spring and summer of 2020 led to calls for a racial reckoning within society at large and also within the field of library and information science (LIS). This motivated us to capture the perceptions and voices of professionals across the field about changes they may have witnessed in their workplace, profession, and themselves. We consider the following questions: Have conversations, social spaces, teaching practices, policies, workplace dynamics, and demands, changed in response to the Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests, and if so, how? Have institutional changes perceived as responses to BLM protests been witnessed? What are the nuances behind such behavioral changes (e.g., opportunity, compulsion, peer pressure)?
For this research, we used Critical Incident Technique (CIT) to explore how the 2020 BLM protests impacted the workplace environments of LIS faculty and professionals in libraries, archives, and museums (LAMs). A 27-question survey was administered via Qualtrics and participants were recruited using LAM professional listservs. A total of 645 participants completed the survey. This research provides the preliminary analysis and discussion of those results and provides insights to the impact of the 2020 social justice movements in LAMs.
By capturing voices of LAM professionals, we explore participants’ perceptions of the impact that BLM protests had on their institutions and/or professional associations and document a range of responses at both the individual and structural levels.
Pre-print first published online 9/30/2022
Copyright (c) 2022 Sumayya Ahmed, Rachael Clemens, Ericka Patillo, Angela Murillo
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
JCLIS is open access in publication, politics, and philosophy. In a world where paywalls are the norm for access to scholarly research, the Journal recognizes that removal of barriers to accessing information is key to the production and sharing of knowledge.
Authors retain intellectual property and copyright of manuscripts published in JCLIS, and JCLIS applies a Creative Commons (Attribution-NonCommercial) license to published articles. If an article is republished after initial publication in JCLIS, the republished article should indicate that it was first published by JCLIS.