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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the Stacks: Ethnicity in the Ancient World

Posted on by Rebecca Stuhr and Cheyenne Riehl
Greek painting of Athena and Poseidon

There are multiple ways to investigate the concept of “ethnicity” in the ancient world. The first is to examine how (or whether) ancient cultures thought about ethnicity or race. Scholars generally concur that Greek and Roman cultures did not think in terms of race and ethnicity

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the (Virtual) Stacks: Antiracism Resources

Posted on
Cover of Ibram X. Kendi's How to Be an Antiracist

In recent weeks, unjust, unfair, and unwarranted acts of violence against the Black community have galvanized the United States — and the world — into protest against the insidiousness and perpetuity of racism in American society. These protests have been a clarion call for individuals to examine their own racial conditioning. 

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the (Virtual) Stacks: Juneteenth

Posted on by Nick Okrent
Juneteenth Emancipation Day Celebration, June 19, 1900, Texas

The Emancipation Proclamation — the executive order which abolished slavery in the Confederacy — went into effect on January 1, 1863. However, the news was kept from enslaved African Americans living in Texas until June of 1865, when Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston with 2,000 federal troops.

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the (Virtual) Stacks: Sexual Minorities

Posted on by David Azzolina
Marsha P. Johnson

If you were to go into a library fifty years ago and browse the card catalog, under the subjects “homosexuality” and “lesbianism” you would find a card that read, “see also sexual perversion.” Under “sexual perversion,” another card would suggest that you also consult “homosexuality” and “lesbianism.” It wasn’t until 1973, in fact, that the American Psychiatric Association ceased to classify homosexuality and lesbianism as pathologies.

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the (Virtual) Stacks: Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Posted on by Rebecca Stuhr
Origami tiger

Penn Libraries celebrates Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with an online pop-up exhibit. Current and former Penn students have recommended and described their favorite pieces of Asian Pacific American literature. Asian and Pacific Islander authors are diverse in origin and background and include writers whose ancestries reach back to East Asia, South Asia, and the Pacific Islands.

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the (Virtual) Stacks: Performing Arts

Posted on by Chelsea Rizzolo, Music Library Intern
Four dancers holding hands

From the Annenberg Center to the Albrecht Music Library, performing arts play a leading role in research and pedagogy  at the University of Pennsylvania. “Performance is core, of course, to the Music, English, and Theater Arts Departments,” explains Nick Okrent, Coordinator and Librarian for Humanities Collections. “But performing arts are also important for fields like education, anthropology, law, and design.” 

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the Stacks: Dalit Literature

Posted on by Jef Pierce
Dalit Lit Conference logo of hand raised with pen

Rigid hierarchies of caste in South Asia have sanctioned the subjugation and exploitation of so-called “untouchable” communities for centuries. Now frequently referred to by the term Dalit (a word derived from the Sanskrit dalita, meaning “scattered” or “broken”), these oppressed peoples are fighting for greater recognition and equality. 

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the Stacks: LGBTQ+ Lives on Screen

Posted on by Charles Cobine
Philadelphia Pride Flag

Penn Libraries has been collecting film and media that focuses on LGBTQ+ issues, gender and sexuality for several decades. This collection—which ranges from narrative, documentary, and experimental films to mainstream television series—has grown in recent years to comprise a significant part of the Libraries’ film catalog.

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the Stacks: Ethnohistory of Latin America

Posted on by Joseph Holub
Book cover featuring photo of Latin American women in brightly colored dresses

In 1994, Penn joined 30 other North American libraries to found the Latin Americanist Research Resources Project (LARRP). Participant institutions committed to devoting increased resources to particular countries or themes in order to better represent the “diversity of Latin American cultural and scholarly­ production.” 

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Diversity in the stacks

Diversity in the Stacks: Oral History Narratives

Posted on by Nick Okrent
Photograph of actor Laurence Fishburne

Oral histories provide direct access to the lived experiences of individuals through their verbal accounts of events and relationships that shaped their lives.  These narratives preserve those memories so that later generations can learn through the individuals' unedited personal accounts. 

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