Answered Questions

QUESTION: Digitization and archive funding for radicals

question / pregunta: 

I'm part of a collective that produces independent media about a radical movement. We're about to approach a labor library at a private university about accepting physical and electronic files into their collection. We'd like to see these items not only be available to scholars, however, but also to be digitized so we can link to them from our own site and allow remotely located activists access to this history. We understand that the archive will be more likely to accept our collection if we have some funding attached to it. So, I have a few questions:

1. Are there sources of funding for radical history archival?

2. What is the protocol for approaching the archive about digitization? Will they be weird about our desire to make the collection visible on our website?

Thanks for any insight you can provide.

QUESTION: What kind of questions are asked at demonstrations

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I read your article in the IFLA Journal 35 in 2009. What still is not clear to me about the work of radical reference: What kind of questions are asked at demonstration and other political events? First people have to recognize you, but what happens with you at these events afterwards? Could you supply sample questions?
Thank you very much!


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About a month ago I read an article on the CBC website announcing the Tories plans to fund prison expansion.
Part of the $155.5 million, $60 million to be exact, is going to fund new beds. Here is the link to the article for more specific information:
My question is who is building these beds? What company?


QUESTION: Zapatista women and IT

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I am doing a project about the Zapatista's use of IT (mostly the internet). I am interested in finding information on how women in the Zapatistas have used IT or how they have been involved in its use in the Zapatista movement.


question / pregunta: 

What was President Eisenhower's foreign policies regarding Vietnam.

QUESTION: Need statistics on poor, women of color single parents in writing/publishing for grant

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I am looking for facts and statistics on mothers of color, low income, single mothers and publishing (vs. white, middle class, male) in order to show why a grant to fund low income, single mothers, and mothers of color writing.

oh my goodness, thats kinda incoherent, isn't it? my writing skills are sad. I need some good hard facts and figures on the disparages between male and women, women and mothers, mothers of color and white mothers, etc. in the publishing world and who gets published. to help build a proposal so we could have some writers grant to do one part of helping our anthology be able to center these voices better. to fund babysitters and other necessities for great voices out there so they have more of a chance to submit to our anthology as well, is just one part, in addressing this.
-its a long shot, I'm aplying for a local thing due oct. 15
-statistics are always one of my weak points. please help :)

is there a statistic that shows the amount of white people and males and people with money writing about marginalized voices vs. the writing that is published from these groups. Can you turn this quote into a statistic:

"when a White person writes a book from Black characters’ points-of-view it gets on the best sellers list. Then you have Black people writing about the same thing and they can’t get a deal. They can’t get a book contract." - Terry McMillan

QUESTION: Our Secret Century

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I would like to view several of the separate documentaries that make up the series, Our Secret Century. However, I can't find these documentaries anywhere, for purchase or on the Prelinger archive (the archive has great individual ephemeral videos, but not the 80 minute titles like The Rainbow is Yours). Is there somewhere I could go to buy, rent, or access these wonderful videos?

QUESTION: Mozilla Add-Ons for Firefox: creating new one for myself

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Mozilla Add-Ons for Firefox: For years I have used customized add-ons many times a day to search for a topic, author, or title on multiple sites one after another without retyping. (The radical part is that I used sites like and Worldcat with a zip code to help patrons get books cheap or free or locally from sources other than Amazon. I could also use websites I knew to be more far reaching than the library databases.) My personally added sites were just all wiped out accidentally by my IT department. I used to be able to add sites easily to my list, but this capacity seems to have been removed or moved long ago. Are any of you Rad Ref folks familiar with this app (which appears with the down arrow in the search box at the upper right of the Firefox page, at bottom under "manage search engines")? Can you advise me how I can add my own choices or whether this is not possible? I could mess with it further but tapping into collective knowledge seems a better path. My library phone number M-F 415 355 2886 if you want to call for clarification or a ref interview. Thanks,

QUESTION: how/where to become a radical librarian

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I was wondering if anyone could help me out by telling me what steps I'd need to take in order to become 1. a librarian 2. a radical librarian.

I have a BA and am working on an MA, so I can't repeat either of those steps!

Also, I am in Canada and would prefer to do my studies in the GTA/Ontario, or the East coast.


QUESTION: CIA involvement in murder of Bob Sheldon?

question / pregunta: 

I'm curious about the murder of Bob Sheldon, founder of the famous Chapel Hill infoshop, Internationalist Books, with especial focus on the reference to CIA involvement in the Sonic Youth song, "Chapel Hill." Written in 1991, the song contains two explicit references to Sheldon's murder that point to possible CIA involvement:

Back in the days when the battles raged
And we thought it was nothing
A bookstore man meets the CIA
And we know


Lookin' away it's another day
And of course we love you
But radical man meets the CIA
And we said no

I'm wondering if there is any credible evidence tying the CIA or local police to Sheldon's murder. It seems the CHPD and local FBI office did as little as possible to apprehend the killer with most people accepting that it was either a bungled robbery or perhaps retaliation from nationalist, pro-war citizens (Sheldon was murdered shortly after the start of the first Gulf War and he was predictably outspoken against it).

Here's a story commemorating Sheldon's life from the local alt-weekly:

And here's the Wikipedia article on Internationalist Books:

Thank you!