Giving voice, telling stories: WOC + Lib & The Black Male Archives

If ever we needed empowering spaces for racial minorities, we certainly need them now. Here are two websites that highlight the voices of women of color and black males in creative and uplifting ways.

WOC + Lib: Developed by LaQuanda Onyemeh and Lorin Jackson, this site provides a safe space for women of color in the library field to share their experiences, build community, and support each other. As Onyemeh and Jackson explain on their About Us page, “[W]e realized there weren’t many spaces for us and we want to make one ourselves for ourselves.” Features so far include an interview with Notre Dame librarian Leslie L. Morgan, articles about professional friendships among women of color, and a piece about diversity in library hiring.

The Black Male Archives: Rodney Freeman started this project, in part, to document the richness and diversity of black males’ life experiences. Describing his goals, he states, “In the past couple of years, we’ve been bombarded with so many negative images and stories about Black Men and I began to look at myself and wonder if that was how people saw me…I wanted to provide people with a different perspective, create something that will show Black Men in a positive light, and show our many experiences in their entirety” (from the homepage). Among the site’s highlights are a podcast, Tell Your Story section, and profiles of groundbreaking black male athletes.

Kudos to Onyemeh, Jackson, and Freeman for doing this much-needed work.

If you have created an empowering space of your own, be sure to tell me about it!


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