Missing Books, Missing Voices

What are we missing in the Williams Libraries? The libraries’ collections and services have grown over the centuries and reflect that history and the needs of each generation of scholars and students who have formed Williams College. As our community has changed and become more inclusive have the libraries kept pace? Are we standing with and sustaining our diverse community and supporting all members across differences?

This event will enable everyone in our community to tell us what we are missing and help us fill the gaps in our collection. On Claiming Williams Day we will empty the new books areas in both Schow and Sawyer. We will have blank books, magazines, and DVD cases available and invite everyone to write a title, a topic, a whole area of the collection, they think is missing from our collections and add it to the new book shelves. We will also have a laptop for people to add an online resource and a whiteboard ready for people to add their ideas about library services that could help us all stand together and support all members across differences.

We plan to incorporate what we learn into our collection development by buying as many of the suggested titles as we can and including a special Claiming Williams bookplate. After Claiming Williams Day we will create a bibliography of the suggested titles, and devote one of our Tuesday Teas in spring 2018 to a panel of students, faculty, and librarians who will discuss what we learned and how our libraries (and the wider scholarly and publishing communities) can do a better job of reflecting the diversity and difference of Williams.

This day-long event is open to the public.