• For Us, By Us: Critically Cataloging Black Arts Material

    Nicholas Caldwell (see profile)
    Item Type:
    Meeting Title:
    ARLIS/NA 50th Annual Conference
    Meeting Org.:
    Meeting Loc.:
    Chicago, IL
    Meeting Date:
    April 8, 2022
    critical archival studies, black arts
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    The Black Arts Movement (BAM) was an African-American lead artistic and aesthetic movement that was highly active during the 1960s and 1970s in Chicago. Often called the cultural arm to the Black Power Movement, the goal of BAM was to provide positive and empowering depictions of the Black community, produced by and for Black people. The innovative aesthetics and production methods of BAM have heavily influenced African-American cultural production from then to present. However, these works are often difficult to find, access, and research in libraries and other cultural institutions. This is in part because BAM works disrupt our traditional standards for descriptive cataloging. Works produced by BAM artists were often created collaboratively and involved multiple media, which can complicate our traditional ideas of who counts as contributors to a work and the boundaries we draw between media categories. Additionally, there are paratextual elements of these works that are essential to their discoverability that would not typically be catalogued in more traditionally produced material. This lightning talk focuses on how critical, ethical, and anti-racist cataloging come into play when describing materials created during the Black Arts Movement of the 1960-70s. The talk will provide specific examples of how enhancing catalog records can make these materials more discoverable to researchers, focusing on works published by Black-owned presses in the United States.
    Last Updated:
    2 years ago
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