Black Lives Still Matter for LIS: An Introduction to the Special Issue


  • Tonia Sutherland University of California, Los Angeles
  • Michelle Caswell University of California, Los Angeles
  • Safiya Noble University of California, Los Angeles
  • Sarah Roberts University of California, Los Angeles



This introduction highlights the articles in the special issue Library and Information Studies and the Mattering of Black Lives.

Author Biographies

Tonia Sutherland, University of California, Los Angeles

Tonia Sutherland is Assistant Professor of Information Studies at UCLA. Global in scope, Sutherland’s research focuses on the critical and liberatory in archival studies, digital studies, and science and technology studies, emphasizing the often-messy entanglements of memory, community, and technology. Sutherland, an internationally recognized expert in the study of Black archival practices and Black digital archives, is the author of Resurrecting the Black Body: Race and the Digital Afterlife (University of California Press, 2023) as well as over two dozen articles and book chapters. In addition to her research and teaching, Sutherland is the Co-Director of the Community Archives Lab at UCLA, Co-Founder and Co-Director of AfterLab at the University of Washington's iSchool, and serves on the Advisory Board for the Center for Critical Race and Digital Studies at NYU.

Michelle Caswell, University of California, Los Angeles

Michelle Caswell, PhD, (she/her), is a Professor in the Department of Information Studies at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) where so co-directs the UCLA Community Archives Lab ( In 2008, together with Samip Mallick, Caswell co-founded the South Asian American Digital Archive (, an online repository that documents and provides access to the stories of South Asian Americans. She is the author of two books: Urgent Archives: Enacting Liberatory Memory Work (Routledge, 2021) and Archiving the Unspeakable: Silence, Memory and the Photographic Record in Cambodia (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014), as well as more than 50 peer-reviewed articles.

Safiya Noble, University of California, Los Angeles

Dr. Safiya U. Noble is an internet studies scholar and Professor of Gender Studies, African American Studies and Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) where she serves as the Faculty Director of the Center on Race & Digital Justice and Co-Director of the Minderoo Initiative on Tech & Power at the UCLA Center for Critical Internet Inquiry (C2i2). She is a Research Associate at the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford where she was a Commissioner on the Oxford Commission on AI & Good Governance (OxCAIGG). In 2021, she was recognized as a MacArthur Foundation Fellow for her ground-breaking work on algorithmic discrimination. In 2022, she was recognized as the inaugural NAACP-Archewell Digital Civil Rights Award recipient. She is a chartering member of the International Panel on the Information Environment and Interim Director of the UCLA DataX Initiative.