IFLA's World Library and Information Congress in Kuala Lumpur.

American Library Association • August 28, 2018
ALA Graphics

For daily ALA and library news, check the American Libraries website or subscribe to our RSS feed.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Pinterest icon YouTube icon RSS icon

IFLA congress honors the transformative power of libraries

Gamelan musicians perform at the 2018 IFLA WLIC Opening Session in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Traditional mak yong and asyik dancers, accompanied by gamelan musicians, performed a royal welcoming dance to open the 84th International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions’ (IFLA) World Library and Information Congress in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This year’s conference, August 24–30, drew 3,516 delegates from 112 countries to the bustling and diverse Malaysian capital. The congress theme, “Transform Libraries, Transform Societies,” includes the tagline “Reaching out to the hard to reach.” Many sessions and programs this year are emphasizing the role of libraries in national development....

AL: The Scoop, Aug. 26

Marrakesh and more

“Marrakesh Treaty in Force” presenters, from left: Hiroshi Kawamura, Victoria Owen, Dipendra Manocha, and moderator Kirsi Ylänne

How can libraries make use of the Marrakesh Treaty to benefit patrons with print disabilities? That was the focus of the “Marrakesh Treaty in Force” session August 27 at the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Other sessions focused on law libraries in times of crisis, libraries as safe spaces and using social media, libraries as forces for change, and libraries using blockchain technology. Follow more IFLA activities at #wlic2018....

AL: The Scoop, Aug. 26–28

Successful voter outreach

Women’s Suffrage Parade, New York City, 1915

Maggie Bush writes: “Libraries offer a prime opportunity for voters to gain access to critical information they need to cast a knowledgeable vote. Whether your library has a longstanding voter engagement effort underway or you’re just getting started, here are five tips for getting the most out of your voter outreach campaign this year.”...

AL: The Scoop, Aug. 28
Latest Library Links

Lafayette trustee resigns over drag queen storytime

Lafayette trustee resigns over drag queen storytime

Following growing controversy surrounding a drag queen storytime event scheduled for early October at the Lafayette (La.) Public Library, Board of Control President Joseph Gordon-Wiltz has submitted his letter of resignation, according to library board members. Gordon-Wiltz, who is an appointee of Mayor-President Joel Robideaux, dated the resignation effective immediately. He was appointed as board president in November 2017, and his term would have been up in October of this year....

KLFY-TV, Lafayette, La., Aug. 27; Lafayette Daily Advertiser, Aug. 22

Alabama ministers speak out against drag queen storytime

Crowd at the Mobile County Commission meeting, August 27. Photo by John Sharp, al.com

Representatives from Baptist churches in Mobile, Alabama, spoke in opposition August 27 to a planned Drag Queen Storytime event at the Mobile Public Library Main branch on September 8, arguing that it pushes a political agenda and is detrimental to children. The pastors were joined by three other speakers before a large crowd at a Mobile County Commission meeting. Scheduled to read to children ages 3–8 is Wade Brasfield, who will be dressed as “Khloe Kash,” his drag queen persona....

Birmingham (Ala.) News, Aug. 24, 27

New LC logo disappoints some

New Library of Congress logo

Anne Quito writes: “The Library of Congress unveiled a new logo on August 21. Compared to the beloved ‘book flag’ logo created in 2000 by the late branding guru Ivan Chermayeff, LC’s updated brand mark is bold, plain, and, as many have noted, oddly redundant with two instances of the word ‘library.’ Paula Scher, who designed the new visual identity, explained that Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden wanted to emphasize the breadth of its services for the American public instead of its ties to the US Congress.”...

Quartz, Aug. 26; Library of Congress Blog, Aug. 21; Quartzy, Dec. 4, 2017
ALA news

The library on the International Space Station

Backdropped by Earth’s horizon and the blackness of space, the International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-130 crew member on space shuttle Endeavour after the station and shuttle began their post-undocking relative separation. Undocking of the two spacecraft occurred at 7:54 p.m. (EST) on Feb. 19, 2010

Alex Johnson writes: “The astronauts on the International Space Station are busy people, but even they need some time to unwind. In addition to a well-stocked film library (strong on movies with a space theme), there are many books in their informal library. Some are brought up by the astronauts—Susan Helms was allowed 10 paperbacks and chose Gone With the Wind, Vanity Fair, and War and Peace. Others come with space tourists, such as billionaire businessman Charles​ Simonyi, who brought Faust and Robert Heinlein’s The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress.”...

The Independent (UK), July 31

How two thieves stole thousands of rare prints

David Roberts’s The Holy Land, a book Robert Kindred was lowering down the side of a building the night he was caught. The rope marks and spine damage on its cover are still visible

Travis McDade writes: “In the summer of 1980, Robert Kindred was a 35-year-old high school dropout with no plans of going to college. No major American crime requires as much traveling as that of stealing rare books from libraries, a fact Kindred knew from experience. Kindred, an antique print dealer, and his partner Richard Green were interested in the low hanging fruit of the rare book field: 19th-century scientific illustrations. The first circle on their map was College Station, home to Texas A&M University.”...

Atlas Obscura, Aug. 24
Dewey Decibel podcast

Four questions to ask when favorite books do not age well

Problematic classics

Matt Mikalatos writes: “There are classics of fiction that are uncomfortable for various reasons. Some of them are straight-out racist, or unrepentantly misogynistic, or homophobic, or all of the above. How and why and when we come to these realizations can change depending on who we are, as well: I’m guessing none of my African American friends have come across the n-word in a novel and ‘not noticed,’ even as kids. The fact that I hadn’t noticed or remembered the use of that word, even as a child, in T. H. White’s The Once and Future King is a sign of my own privilege.”...

Tor.com, Aug. 27

The history and future of the Western in 10 books

Cover of In the Distance, by Hernan Diaz

John Larison writes: “Part immigrant story, part adventure tale, and part allegory of truth and justice—the Western has been entertaining American readers for nearly 200 years. So many of America’s myths about itself—many of them historically inaccurate, misogynistic, or both—are reflected in the genre that literary writers have been turning their attentions to in recent years. To help make sense of these contemporary efforts, consider this crash course on the origin and future of the Western genre.”...

Publishers Weekly, Aug. 24

University of Rhode Island prepares to launch AI lab

URI Carothers Library, home to the new AI Lab

Ryan Johnston writes: “The University of Rhode Island is launching an artificial intelligence laboratory that officials say will be the first in the world to be located within an academic library. The grant-funded, $143,065 AI lab will be open to all students and faculty on the first floor of the university’s Robert L. Carothers Library. It represents the latest approach to educate the campus community on the ethical, technological, and social consequences of AI.”...

EdScoop Aug. 23

Tools and tips for finding open access articles

Open Access Button

Ashley Farley writes: “There are often barriers to subscription access for students and faculty working offsite. Often this can require using Remote Desktop or a VPN to connect to a network before access is recognized. For the institution where I work, this involves 10–15 clicks with two verification steps. Open access is technically easier. However, the discovery process for open access articles isn’t necessarily the same as subscription searching. Here are some tips and tools for finding open access articles more easily.”...

LITA Blog, Aug. 27

AL Direct is a free electronic newsletter emailed every Tuesday and Friday to personal members of the American Library Association.

Editor, AL Direct: George M. Eberhart, geberhart@ala.org

Send news and feedback: aldirect@ala.org

Direct ad inquiries to: Michael Stack, mstack@ala.org

AL Direct FAQ: americanlibrariesmagazine.org/al-direct

All links outside the ALA website are provided for informational purposes only. Questions about the content of any external site should be addressed to the administrator of that site.


AL Direct will not sell your email to outside parties, but your email may be shared with advertisers in this newsletter should you express interest in their products by clicking on their ads or content. If the advertisers choose to communicate with you by email, they are obligated to provide you with an opportunity to opt-out from future emails in compliance with the CAN-SPAM act of 2003 and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation of 2018. Read the ALA privacy policy.

American Libraries
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611
800-545-2433, ext. 4216

ISSN 1559-369X

ALA Publishing