🔖Read Being a Public Librarian Can Be Dangerous Work, Why Don’t We Acknowledge That? - Electric Literature
Libraries are resolutely radical institutions. They are free to use and open to the public, spaces that demand nothing from you to enter and nothing for you to stay. No exchange of money occurs between library user and library, save for overdue book fees, which are becoming more and more obsolete. Libraries are sanctuaries for the mind, body, and spirit. They are repositories of language, literature, community care, and human growth. And they are also places of objectification, racism, sexual assault, and other human atrocities. They are embodiments of our history and culture, for better, and also for worse.
I acknowledge that I live and work on unceded Lumbee, Skaruhreh/Tuscarora, Cheraw, Catawba, Saponi, Occaneechi, and Shakori land. I give respect and reverence to those who came before me. I thank Holisticism for the text of this land acknowledgement.
We must acknowledge that much of what we know of this country today, including its culture, economic growth, and development throughout history and across time, has been made possible by the labor of enslaved Africans and their ascendants who suffered the horror of the transatlantic trafficking of their people, chattel slavery, and Jim Crow. We are indebted to their labor and their sacrifice, and we must acknowledge the tremors of that violence throughout the generations and the resulting impact that can still be felt and witnessed today. I thank Dr. Terah ‘TJ’ Stewart for the text of this labor acknowledgement.