Doctoral candidate Jeanie Austin successfully defended their dissertation, "Libraries for Social Change: Centering youth of color and/or LGBTQ and gender non-conforming youth in library practice," on November 6.
Their committee included Associate Professor Emerita Christine Jenkins (chair), Assistant Professor and MS/LIS Program Director Nicole A. Cooke (research director), Associate Professor Carol Tilley, Associate Professor Soo Ah Kwon (Department of Asian American Studies), and Rae-Anne Montague (Director of Grassroots Fundraising, Education Justice Project).
From the abstract:
Critically aware libraries are capable of providing meaningful services to youth made most vulnerable to the state through surveillance, policing, and incarceration. This research traces how past policies and processes that established white, middle-class, and hetero-normative conduct and knowledge as central to library services have worked—and continue to work—against youth of color and/or LGBTQ and gender non-conforming youth. It pulls from queer, feminist, poststructural, and critical theory to provide a model for how libraries can center youth made vulnerable to the state. This involves an interrogation of what representation does or can do in the current moment alongside the recognition that cultures within librarianship inhibit library access for youth of color and/or LGBTQ and gender non-conforming youth.