Library collections at Lancaster University are organised using the BLISS classification system and subject headings. There are many useful classmarks and subject headings that will help you find material relevant to Black History which are listed below.
However, academics and librarians are aware that the act of organising knowledge according to classification schemes devised a long time ago can compound problems of white- and west- centricism: the act of treating white and 'western' as being the default.
We recognise this is problematic and can be offensive when outdated language is used. We recognise that there is much work to be done to maintain the ability to discover material related to black people, culture and history without perpetuating structural racism.
At Lancaster University Library we are lucky to have passionate staff working hard to remove these kinds of embedded institutional discriminations. We are connected to networks of academics and students who support this work by making suggestions and recommendations that we can take forward, and we are working on making it known that we want to be better and that with as many people involved as possible we can continue to push for radical change.
Crilly, J. (2019) Decolonising the library: a theoretical exploration. Spark: UAL Creative Teaching and Learning Journal, 4(1) 6-15
Books and pamphlets are shelved on both A and B floors. Key classmarks are:
|African American History, Civil Rights Movement||
|African Language and linguistics||WK|
|Black American English||YAZAL|
Most of the time it is easiest to search with keywords. Subject headings are used to bring material on a similar topic together. Below are some subject headings that will direct you to interesting material.
Search for country, continent, region and tribal names. Using outdated colonial names will find older material, for example Zimbabwe OR Rhodesia.
You can use the 'Browse' feature in OneSearch to look up Subjects.