My favorite way to make a book display is to include older titles. We as readers are constantly bombarded with news and ads about new books, and usually this is based on what the publishers think is best (meaning the success of a book can be determined by publishing staff and how much money was put behind it). And another inequitable publishing habit is how much the authors get paid. So to get to the essence of whatever topic I am displaying books about, I don’t limit myself to brand new books. I bring this up because I have another display to share with you, dear readers! In fact, it’s a whole new part of TADL Topics: Women’s History.
Here on the Women’s History Month Topic page, you will see links to resources about women’s history, mostly in the United States. Have you heard of the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA)? It’s one of the best free research resources we have at our digital disposal. They have a whole section about Black Women’s Suffrage, which happened over 40 years later than the 19th Amendment.
The cool part is that these primary sources can be used as physical references in our research. “But librarian, how can they be physical references if I am not holding them in my hands???????” Thank you so much for asking, dear reader. It’s because with DPLA, like the ones in the TADL local history archives, they do exist in the world, and it’s a matter of money (and travel and other things many of us cannot do, especially during a pandemic) that indicate whether we can get our grubby little hands on them. Therefore, as with any book you get from Internet Archive, Hoopla, Google Books, etc., these resources count as physical, not digital references. So far, I still count online articles and things like the 1619 Project as digital resources because they never existed outside of digital access (but I am open to other arguments!).
The next fun thing on the Women’s History Month page is the book lists. You can scroll through the short list right on this page using the “prev” and “next” buttons (circled A in the screen capture below), but you can see the full list when you click “View All” (circled B).
There is a list for every age group curated by library staff at the TADL Main Branch, and we hope you find something you like! For those who need something on your ereader of choice, Hoopla has created a list of relevant Women’s History Month titles, and Libro.fm has a fun quiz to help you choose what next to read, if you enjoy book quizzes like we do.
Want to know more about local women’s history? This is Alice Wait (photo credit). She was the head librarian for Traverse City Public Library for over 40 years. To learn more about her, join us for this month’s meeting of the Traverse Area Historical Society where they will cover women’s history, specifically local women’s history and how our library came to be! Featured speakers include Peg Siciliano, Ann Swaney, and Anne Magoun, which is a pretty big deal. Here is the link to register for the event on March 27 at 1pm.