Libraries, popular culture, and archives

A review of library depictions in popular culture and discussing controversial archival materials!

Hello everyone! I hope your week is going well, so far. Its a bit rainy where I am now, but I hope its sunny and bright where you all are.

Anyway, I have a few posts I’d like to share with you all. The first of these is my review of two fictional libraries, one in the popular cartoon show, Steven Universe (on the left in the above photo), and the other in the now-defunct show, Futurama (on the right in the above photo). Since I like both so much, I thought I’d write about both! I start by reviewing the New New York Library in Futurama, in a 2001 episode which ends up promoting local library use! The other, in Steven Universe, at the Buddy Buddwick Library, employs a librarian stereotype, the “shush” stereotype, but still ends up showing libraries positively, most accurate to reality. Its part of a continuing series where I’ll look at portrayals of libraries (and archives) in popular culture, highlighting those especially which have been overlooked in past analyses. I hope you enjoy it!

I’d also like to share a collection of tweets I put together about that chat of archivists on Twitter focused on controversial archival materials. While I didn’t want to participate, I thought it was worth putting together for one since it was originally promoted on digests of various SAA sections (SNAP; Issues & Advocacy; Reference, Access & Outreach; Research Libraries). Secondly, it was worth mentioning because some of the tips that archivists use may be helpful to people later on!

Apart from that, I’d like to highlight two posts in Hack Library School. The first focuses on preparing for your LIS degree, even as an undergraduate! The second focuses on making sure you schedule smartly, for success later on. But, there’s more than that, of course. There’s also a book, The Bad Ass Librarians of Timbuktu which is being made into documentary, following “the true story of a group of librarians who undertook a daring cultural evacuation to save ancient texts from Al Qaeda”! So, that should be pretty interesting, to say the least.

Finally, there’s a post about Family Tree magazine recycling old articles with attribution, following subscribers, and the hidden importance of maps, one of my favorite types of documents. With that, that’s all for this week. If you have any articles you’d like to suggest, or have any other ideas for how I can make this newsletter better, please let me know, because I’m relatively new to this whole thing.

Hope everyone has a great rest of the week!

- Burkely