Library Jawn

This is a jawn about libraries
by Poliana Irizarry

Aug 20

catagator:

These two pictures from the director of the Ferguson Public Library and the library’s instagram are also worth sharing. 

(via 8bitstate)


Aug 18
jennafreedman:

Wise Latinas: Writers on Higher Education edited and with an introduction by Jennifer De Leon
Latina writers present the joys and challenges of going to school while brown, some of them the first in their family to do so. You might weep a little while reading it. 
In her introduction, De Leon, explaining why she chose the title that Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor brought into common parlance tells us that “By 2050 Hispanics will make up 30 percent of the U.S. population, yet of 111 Supreme Court justices, all but 4 have been white men. Sotomayor’s controversial comment was nothing more than common sense: shouldn’t our judicial system better represent our population?”
Indeed. I’m riled up all over again.
In Nomadic, Ingrid Rojas Contreras, who grew up in Colombia uses getting used to winter in Chicago as her metaphor for being a South American in US higher education. It takes a while, and when her parents visit, they’re exactly the same way—horrified by snow, riding the thermostat practically into the triple digits and generally ill-equipped, despite their education and wealth, to fully understand and support their daughter’s foreign challenges. I point that out because of the belief that many people have that class is the only factor, and that rich POC don’t have any difficulties that rich white people don’t have. 
Another contributor, Chantel Acevedo writes in Leaving Miami, of her experience on the teacher’s side of the desk when a tall, blonde college counselor marches into her classroom and without a how-do-you-do tells Acevedo’s Cuban-American honors students that her job is to help them get out of Florida. While Acevedo doesn’t feel all that differently, she approaches her students with cultural understanding, admiration and love. I was taken by a lot of Acevedo’s story, maybe because I read the book for my book club with Celia, who also grew up in Miami and also left home, living far from her family culturally now, as well as geographically. She writes, 

I have a few Cuban friends in academia. Very few. Precious few. Our mothers all took to their beds up on our leaving home. The guilt of parting hangs around our necks as securely as those academic hoods drape over us during graduation ceremonies. Once we left, we were past remedy. We know that, too. We’ve seen snow, we’ve tried Ethiopian food [ed: Celia’s favorite restaurant in Chicago is Ethiopian], we’ve dreamed of places far from the goldfish bowl where our children might go to college, we’ve been to Mt. Holyoke, and coño, it’s a neat place. We were right about that. 

Speaking of Mt. Holyoke, the next entry, Las Otras by Celeste Guzman Mendoza, is from another of the Seven Sisters, Barnard College, where I work. The first female college student in her family for generations, she’s matched with a Chinese girl for her first-year roommate. Guzman Mendoza goes into that relationship with stereotypical expectations that are all shattered. 
There are a few big-name contributors, including Julia Alvarez. Her piece, Rapunzel’s Ladder reveals her test-taking terror at the girls’ boarding school she attended with her sister in one of those deals where the school is trying to up its diversity by merely throwing money at a few students. She says “Now I see how unprepared I was to receive an education that did not take into account all it was destroying inside me.” She asks serious pedagogical questions that she herself has tried to address in her own teaching. 
In Derrumbando Muros Along an Academic Path (impossible terrain), Norma Elia Cantú shares a Spanish amigo falso, word that is a false friend in that it doesn’t mean the same thing as its apparent English counterpart: compromiso. She refers to compromiso as allegiance (to her family). Google translate’s top result is “commitment,” not compromise. Ah, language. So compromise vs. allegiance or commitment—so close, but not the same—to Americans. But to a Mexican-American kid growing up in Laredo, Texas, a town that in the 1970s had no university, maybe it is. 
Next up, Joy Castro explores the sometimes impenetrable ivied walls and language of the ivory tower in On Being Educated.

The herd is made up of smart, desperate, and intellectually eager individuals—if they are met halfway, if they are spoken to with respect and in language they can understand. They have not been to Harvard, and if we make them feel stupid, inadequate, and ashamed for not knowing its vocabularies and sharing its assumptions, they will retreat. …
…Yet we need them. Their voices are vital. The academy—as we fondly misguidedly call it, as if it were some great, unified thing—its lumbering along amid eviscerating budget cuts, pressures to corporatize, to streamline, to justify its existence to hostile anti-intellectual factions and a skeptical public, to become purely instrumental, a machine that grants job credentials to twenty-two-year-olds so they can get on with their lives. 

TRUE THAT. And with that, I will stop bloviating with my mediocrely educated self. 
Finished 8/12

jennafreedman:

Wise Latinas: Writers on Higher Education edited and with an introduction by Jennifer De Leon

Latina writers present the joys and challenges of going to school while brown, some of them the first in their family to do so. You might weep a little while reading it. 

In her introduction, De Leon, explaining why she chose the title that Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor brought into common parlance tells us that “By 2050 Hispanics will make up 30 percent of the U.S. population, yet of 111 Supreme Court justices, all but 4 have been white men. Sotomayor’s controversial comment was nothing more than common sense: shouldn’t our judicial system better represent our population?”

Indeed. I’m riled up all over again.

In Nomadic, Ingrid Rojas Contreras, who grew up in Colombia uses getting used to winter in Chicago as her metaphor for being a South American in US higher education. It takes a while, and when her parents visit, they’re exactly the same way—horrified by snow, riding the thermostat practically into the triple digits and generally ill-equipped, despite their education and wealth, to fully understand and support their daughter’s foreign challenges. I point that out because of the belief that many people have that class is the only factor, and that rich POC don’t have any difficulties that rich white people don’t have. 

Another contributor, Chantel Acevedo writes in Leaving Miami, of her experience on the teacher’s side of the desk when a tall, blonde college counselor marches into her classroom and without a how-do-you-do tells Acevedo’s Cuban-American honors students that her job is to help them get out of Florida. While Acevedo doesn’t feel all that differently, she approaches her students with cultural understanding, admiration and love. I was taken by a lot of Acevedo’s story, maybe because I read the book for my book club with Celia, who also grew up in Miami and also left home, living far from her family culturally now, as well as geographically. She writes, 

I have a few Cuban friends in academia. Very few. Precious few. Our mothers all took to their beds up on our leaving home. The guilt of parting hangs around our necks as securely as those academic hoods drape over us during graduation ceremonies. Once we left, we were past remedy. We know that, too. We’ve seen snow, we’ve tried Ethiopian food [ed: Celia’s favorite restaurant in Chicago is Ethiopian], we’ve dreamed of places far from the goldfish bowl where our children might go to college, we’ve been to Mt. Holyoke, and coño, it’s a neat place. We were right about that. 

Speaking of Mt. Holyoke, the next entry, Las Otras by Celeste Guzman Mendoza, is from another of the Seven Sisters, Barnard College, where I work. The first female college student in her family for generations, she’s matched with a Chinese girl for her first-year roommate. Guzman Mendoza goes into that relationship with stereotypical expectations that are all shattered. 

There are a few big-name contributors, including Julia Alvarez. Her piece, Rapunzel’s Ladder reveals her test-taking terror at the girls’ boarding school she attended with her sister in one of those deals where the school is trying to up its diversity by merely throwing money at a few students. She says “Now I see how unprepared I was to receive an education that did not take into account all it was destroying inside me.” She asks serious pedagogical questions that she herself has tried to address in her own teaching. 

In Derrumbando Muros Along an Academic Path (impossible terrain), Norma Elia Cantú shares a Spanish amigo falso, word that is a false friend in that it doesn’t mean the same thing as its apparent English counterpart: compromiso. She refers to compromiso as allegiance (to her family). Google translate’s top result is “commitment,” not compromise. Ah, language. So compromise vs. allegiance or commitment—so close, but not the same—to Americans. But to a Mexican-American kid growing up in Laredo, Texas, a town that in the 1970s had no university, maybe it is. 

Next up, Joy Castro explores the sometimes impenetrable ivied walls and language of the ivory tower in On Being Educated.

The herd is made up of smart, desperate, and intellectually eager individuals—if they are met halfway, if they are spoken to with respect and in language they can understand. They have not been to Harvard, and if we make them feel stupid, inadequate, and ashamed for not knowing its vocabularies and sharing its assumptions, they will retreat. …

…Yet we need them. Their voices are vital. The academy—as we fondly misguidedly call it, as if it were some great, unified thing—its lumbering along amid eviscerating budget cuts, pressures to corporatize, to streamline, to justify its existence to hostile anti-intellectual factions and a skeptical public, to become purely instrumental, a machine that grants job credentials to twenty-two-year-olds so they can get on with their lives. 

TRUE THAT. And with that, I will stop bloviating with my mediocrely educated self. 

Finished 8/12


2damnfeisty:

"14-year-old Parkview High School Freshman, Caleb Christian was concerned about the number of incidents of police abuse in the news.  Still, he knew there were many good police officers in various communities, but had no way of figuring out which communities were highly rated and which were not.  

So, together with his two older sisters: Parkview High School senior Ima Christian, and Gwinnett School of Math, Science, and Technology sophomore, Asha Christian, they founded a mobile app development company– Pinetart Inc., under which they created a mobile app called Five-O.

Five-O, allows citizens to enter the details of every interaction with a police officer.  It also allows them to rate that officer in terms of courtesy and professionalism and provides the ability to enter a short description of what transpired.  These details are captured for every county in the United States. Citizen race and age information data is also captured.

Additionally, Five-O allows citizens to store the details of each encounter with law enforcement; this provides convenient access to critical information needed for legal action or commendation.”

Read more here. [x]

Black Excellence

(via pearlsnapbutton)


Aug 14

hangingfire:

Back in November, rocketsandrayguns tweeted about Playmobil’s new “City Action Special Forces” play set. This morning I went to see if it’s still available for purchase, and guess what? It sure is. There’s also a Tactical Unit Car and a Tactical Unit Helicopter.

Call me crazy, but I just really can’t get behind normalizing this stuff as a part of the cityscape that your kids play with alongside their LEGO and Weebles. This week’s events in Ferguson only underline this feeling. Heavily.

(via transascendant)


Aug 8

bthny:

Men Explain Things to Me

katiecoyle:

The other day, I was sitting at a table in a place of business and I had a notebook open in front of me. In the notebook, I was making a list of Men I Don’t Hate. It’s actually a pretty long list; that was the point in my making it. Sometimes you just have to remind yourself. Anyway, as I was sitting there, a man I don’t know walked into the room and began talking to me. This is a practice I have always done my best to discourage, but he seemed nice enough and he was blocking the door so I did not employ my usual response to Men I Don’t Know Talking to Me, which is to run away.

The man asked what I did for a living. I told the man I was a writer. The man asked what I wrote. I told the man my YA novel was getting published in the United States in January, and that I had recently finished the sequel. The man told me his friend writes books for kids and publishes them himself. “Have you ever looked into that?” the man asked me. I told him I had not, but that I knew of people who had had great success in that arena. “He says it’s hard,” the man told me, “to get people to actually read it.” I commiserated. “He says the only way to have success writing is to write for a big website,” the man added. I felt like this was not accurate but just sort of nodded, because, like, I don’t know your friend’s life. It was only with the man’s next sentences—“You should probably look into that. You should find a website you want to write for and see if you can write for them”—that I began to understand that he was trying to give me advice in how to succeed in a field I had already established I am doing reasonably well in, despite the fact that this man’s only connection to the world of writing and publishing was his friend, whom he had already established to be doing not-so-well.

He really thought he was just being nice, though, and I think at heart he probably is, so I tried to be nice, too. In a light, friendly, we’re-just-two-buds-with-equally-valuable-insight-into-the-world-of-books sort of tone, I explained that I am really lucky in that my books are being published by a company with a marketing team who would help me to get them read. Not that writing for a website wouldn’t help, too! I didn’t say, “I am in a better position than your friend and already more successful than him by many standards,” but I cheerfully implied it. That’s when the man started to explain that kids don’t read books anymore. Only iPads. “It’s too bad,” the man said, shaking his head, “but that’s how it is.” I kind of started to explain that, from what I’ve seen, kids are actually reading a lot of books—including the ones I’ve written!—but the man had started a diatribe about iPads and attention span and other stuff, and I didn’t want to interrupt.

This is going to seem like a joke, but it’s true: as the man was talking, another man walked into the room. He poured himself a drink and then looked at me, looked down at the notebook in front of me, and said, “Is that your diary?!” in the snidest tone imaginable. He started snickering, took a couple steps to the door, turned around and looked at me, snickering, waiting for me to start snickering too? I don’t know. I was giving him the same look you would give a puddle of vomit on the street you almost accidentally stepped in. The two men started chatting together, then, and I took the opportunity to run from the room, vowing never to return to it.

A day or two ago, I was walking to a coffee shop, planning out a scene in the book I’m writing now, and apropos of nothing, I remembered something a professor in college once told me. He said: “Katie, don’t become one of those angry women writers.” He gave me a lot of good advice, too, but as far as that one went, MISSION UNACCOMPLISHED.


Aug 7
drtyson:

I don’t think it matters whether or not this Twitter knows who Dr Tyson is. You know & I know. That’s all that matters to me. http://drtyson.tumblr.com

drtyson:

I don’t think it matters whether or not this Twitter knows who Dr Tyson is. You know & I know. That’s all that matters to me. http://drtyson.tumblr.com


Aug 4
maryrobinette:

gehayi:

youmightbeamisogynist:

naamahdarling:

mythosidhe:

Although I have to point out that there was a piece of speculative science fiction called The Blazing World published by one Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1666, slightly predating Mary Shelley.

This is the thing. Women have been doing awesome shit since there was awesome shit to do, we’ve BEEN THERE, if anyone bothered to look.

Oh, they looked. And then maliciously and willfully erased us from the books to keep anyone else from “getting ideas.”

Hell, the first named author in history? Enheduanna, a Sumerian high priestess, poet and lyricist. She’s known as the Shakespeare of Sumerian literature.

The first American mystery novel was written by Metta Victoria Fuller Victor, as well as the first dime novel, and the first crime novel..

maryrobinette:

gehayi:

youmightbeamisogynist:

naamahdarling:

mythosidhe:

Although I have to point out that there was a piece of speculative science fiction called The Blazing World published by one Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1666, slightly predating Mary Shelley.

This is the thing. Women have been doing awesome shit since there was awesome shit to do, we’ve BEEN THERE, if anyone bothered to look.

Oh, they looked. And then maliciously and willfully erased us from the books to keep anyone else from “getting ideas.”

Hell, the first named author in history? Enheduanna, a Sumerian high priestess, poet and lyricist. She’s known as the Shakespeare of Sumerian literature.

The first American mystery novel was written by Metta Victoria Fuller Victor, as well as the first dime novel, and the first crime novel..

(via pearlsnapbutton)


Aug 2

monumentoursetlist said: I work at my university's bookstore and every semester one of the professors teaches 'Fight Club' and it's so exciting to see boxes of it come in and rather disappointed to see people return their rented copied or sell them back. Once I returned a copy and the student wrote the synopsis of each chapter under the heading and I freaked out. My manager said it was in otherwise fine condition so we couldn't charge her but what spoilers. How do you feel about your work being taught ?

princesquid:

jean-luc-gohard:

ladyspookypants:

amberguessa:

dashconballpit:

image

this makes me hate things

Fucking hell.

Wait, so Fight Club was genuine? It wasn’t satire of men feeling impotent rage at the prospect of women making gains toward equality?

I’ve legitimately thought it was satire for the last ten years, and now I feel even grosser about my teenage self.

Cool!  I get to hate this book even more!

chuckpalahniuk:

That fact that ‘Fight Club’ is being taught seems — to me — to underscore the dearth of novels that explore male issues.  The past years have given us so many books, from ‘The Color Purple’ to ‘The Joy Luck Club’ to ‘How to Make an American Quilt,’ which depict women in groups and relationship, but almost no books depicting social models for men.  That’s my two cents worth.

almost no books depicting social models for men
Are you FUCKING KIDDING ME right now, Chuck?

Aug 1