How important do you feel that the African American culture impacts the arts?
Our culture, African American culture, dramatically impacts the arts, which is shown throughout American history and the world in literature and film. I often feel that without African American culture, there wouldn't be some of the best parts of an "American Culture."
Tell us about the documentary?
Yes, our documentary, Are You A Librarian? The Untold Story of Black Librarians is about Black Librarians through historical tribulations to modern-day triumphs. It is a story of resilience and strength and fighting against a system not established for us to read and become literate. It is a story about how we built our own libraries and, preserved our own history, and became librarians, and once we're in the door, we like to kick the door open, not just for us but for everyone.
What does success look like for the project?
Success for me is different from what success looks like for this project. Success for me is ensuring my kids have something to leverage for their projects. Success for this project looks like every Black Librarian will hopefully see themselves in this documentary and feel appreciated, loved, and seen. That is what success looks like for both.
How can people support this initiative?
They can support this project by first finding their nearest Black Librarian and telling them THANK YOU! Trust me, they go through a lot, and if they want to support the documentary, please check out our GoFundMe page
How are libraries maintaining their value?
Libraries are maintaining their value by first providing access to information. While a lot is online, not everything is online. So providing access, providing experiences with technology, and providing space for people to gather and talk and work. Providing summer lunches and after-school programs. Libraries are even in some places providing showers to the homeless. They're maintaining their value by adapting to what the people need and want.
About Rodney E. Freeman Jr.
Rodney E. Freeman Jr. has over 13 years in the library field at various levels, building digital collections, working with databases, and taxonomy. Rodney started his career working with digital archives and collections. Rodney has worked in academic, public, and government libraries and in multiple positions, from a library page to a library administrator. Rodney founded Reminisce Preservation, which serves libraries, schools, nonprofits, and individuals by providing integrated tools and networks to create, interact, and preserve legacies easily.
How can we follow you?
Facebook: Are You A Librarian? The Untold Story of Black Librarians