Panel discusses Libraries Under Siege

Inaam Charaf
Kathryn La Barre
Kathryn La Barre, Associate Professor

The International Committee of the GSLIS ALA Student Chapter will host a panel discussion, “Libraries Under Siege: Censorship, Access, and Endurance in the Middle East” on February 7, 2014. Kathryn La Barre, GSLIS faculty member and the immediate past president of the International Society for Knowledge Organization: Chapter for Canada and United States will moderate the event.

This panel discussion will focus on the role of Middle Eastern libraries in environments fraught with civil unrest and military conflict. The participants will discuss censorship, access, power and politics in Syrian, Lebanese, and Egyptian institutions. Panelists include:

[image1-left:resize-150w]Inaam Charaf is a Syrian librarian and professor at Damascus University. Charaf is the former library director at the International University for Science and Technology and received her PhD from Enssib (École Nationale Supérieure des Sciences de l'Information et des Bibliothèques), the premier library and information science school in France.

[image2-right:resize-180w]Randa Chidiac is a Lebanese librarian and president of the Lebanese Library Association. Chidiac is also executive director of the University Library at Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (Université Saint-Esprit De Kaslik USEK).

[image3-left:resize-180w]Laila Hussein Moustafa is an assistant professor of library administration and the Middle East and North Africa subject specialist in the International Area Studies Library at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She received her MA in Near Eastern Studies at New York University, with a focus on medieval Islam, early Shi‘ism, Islamic law, and international law.

“The idea for the panel arose organically from the development of our mission statement: To foster cultural exchange, philanthropy, and information access through local and international collaboration,” said Jaime Wittenberg, chair of the GSLIS ALA Student Chapter International Committee. “We wanted to provide a space for the GSLIS community to engage with the historically-impacted experience of libraries in the Middle East, the politics of information services in conflict zones, and the inexorably entwined roles of information professionals on a global scale.”

The event will take place from 10:00am -11:30am on February 7 in LIS 126 and is a joint on-campus/virtual event. To join the event virtually, visit this webpage.

Refreshments will be provided.

Research Areas: