In this presentation, members of the Prison Library Support Network will discuss: (1) how our organization started and how we build our relationships; (2) the projects we have done: from the asks that inspire them, to the way we work through them as a non-hierarchical organization, to their impact in the library and prison communities; and (3) what brought us to and keeps us tied to this work—how it brings joy and how it fosters radical information liberation, i.e., information access alternatives that subvert power structures. We’ll discuss how attendees can do similar work and end with a Q&A.
Our goal for this presentation is to offer our work as one model for organizing sustainable, volunteer-powered information networks and services, and to encourage reflection on what our roles as information workers look like in the struggle for collective liberation.
This webinar was initially presented as part of the 2021 Urban Libraries Conference.
About PSLN: The Prison Library Support Network (PLSN) is an information-based collective founded in 2016 to support incarcerated people by organizing networks for sharing resources and building community around prison abolition in libraries, archives, and other knowledge-based institutions.
Much of our work is driven by the question: how can we use our skills and resources as information workers to create and support spaces for abolition? We believe abolition is a form of collective liberation and information workers are uniquely positioned to, as library worker Liv Graham describes, “think outside the box—aka outside of Institutions—to build open systems of access to information about, for, and by us, working toward an attainable vision of collective information resources that support liberation and abolition through access.”