critical librarianship, librarians of color, equity, workplace culture, Critical Library Instruction
Critical librarianship, or critlib, has made its way into the mainstream of library and information science through conferences, scholarly publications, social media, and other outlets. Over the past 10 years critical library instruction specifically has continued to be a much presented and published topic. Classes and other groups that come through our libraries are opportunities for us to teach, learn, and empower. The care and critical perspectives we bring into the classroom are necessary, but are we also fostering this type of environment in the workplace? Are we doing enough to turn the critical lens on ourselves? As a woman of color in a predominantly white profession, it is difficult to not feel as though critical librarianship is performative. There is a time and place to refer to theory and another to engage in practice. Throughout this article I will illustrate that while critical pedagogy in librarianship has changed the way we teach information literacy and think of the teacher/student relationship, it’s been slower to change power relations between library colleagues. We ask our students to critically examine a resource and to see what is being left out of the conversation. It’s time to not only ask the same of us and the profession but also for us to take action.
Ferretti, J. A. (2020). Building a Critical Culture: How Critical Librarianship Falls Short in the Workplace. Communications in Information Literacy, 14 (1), 134-152. https://doi.org/10.15760/comminfolit.2020.14.1.10