Tuesday, May 24, 2016

I am king of all I see, my kingdom for a voice

I'm in the midst of writing a book chapter--which sounds like the world's worst humblebrag,I realize. While it's been a real challenge for me to write long form, it's been nice to have the space to expand my thoughts beyond the length of a blog post and explore my ideas a little more.

I'm not sure that this will make it past the cutting room floor, but yesterday I wrote:
Metadata creation has both a privilege problem and an image problem and we have to wrestle and reckon with both in order to find a place where metadata creators are both valued for the work we do and empathetic in the words we use.
This isn't a particularly novel idea, nor it is particularly inflammatory. But it's not a place I came to easily and without struggle.

The LIS program I attended didn't have a lot in the way of theoretical grounding as as a English major with a creative writing focus, I wasn't exposed to much beyond literary theory as an undergraduate. So being exposed to critical theory and ideas was something that has only happened in the last few years.

When I turn over new ideas, I am almost never walking through new territory. There are people who came well before me and people whose work is more recent. And I am both aware of, and grateful for, their work.

I appreciate how Emily Drabinski has challenged me to think about how impossible it is to fix (in any sense) language that describes people.

I appreciate how April Hathcock has challenged me to understand my privilege and my complicity in the maintenance of oppressive systems within the LIS community.

I appreciate how Maria Accardi has taught me to bring my whole self into my work and to value the worth of all of the users I serve.

I appreciate how Derrick Jefferson has challenged me to think about intersectionality in the LIS community.

I appreciate how Netanel Ganin has challenged me to think in literal terms about the construction and application of LCSH.

All of this is to say that I understand that when I think and when I write, I'm standing on the shoulders of the kindest, most thoughtful giants I can imagine.

Stay positive,

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