Library Recent Acquisitions: Black News & Amiri Baraka Papers

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Black News newspaperThe History Department and the University of Waterloo Library recently collaborated to bring important resources related to Black Studies to campus, which will benefit students and faculty studying Black history.

  • Special Collections & Archives (SCA) has acquired a rare collection of Brooklyn-based newspapers from the 1970s. Black News offers a rare glimpse into the experiences of Black communities at a critical moment in the history of the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Poet and activist Amiri Baraka’s digitized papers are being added to the Library’s ever-growing digital resources.

The Library’s liaison librarians work closely with faculty and researchers in their subject areas to continually add to our resources in order to provide the most robust collection possible. History PhD student Vera Zoricic, studying digital Black history, reached out Mike Chee, history liaison librarian, to inquire about the possibility of bringing these valuable resources to Waterloo. “The staff at the Dana Porter Library eagerly supports my research, and collaboration with them is a complete pleasure and privilege. I’m thrilled that Black News and the digital collection of the Amiri Baraka papers have found a home at the University of Waterloo, as they are valuable resources for Black Studies.”

Black News newspaperSCA was brought into the project given the rare nature of the resources being sought, as SCA also actively acquires materials to support the teaching and learning goals of the institution. Rebecka Sheffield, head of SCA, says, “We are proud to acquire issues of this important publication as both a resource for our community of researchers and as part of our commitment to building research collections that includes a diversity of important histories that have impacted campus, the Region of Waterloo, and beyond.”  

Now that the materials have been acquired and catalogued with the help of librarians Johanna Whitson and Lauren Byl, and SCA staff, the materials are available for all to use. Stop by Special Collections & Archives to view Black News and access the Amiri Baraka papers through the Library’s digital collection.

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