The OU Libraries recently joined Project STAND, Student Activism Now Documented, by digitally showcasing African-American student activism in the Bizzell Memorial Library in a celebration of Black History Month.
Project STAND, which includes over 40 colleges and universities, was created in 2016 to increase access to archives and collections of student activism by creating an “online hub,” according to an OU Info statement.
“Participating in Project STAND gives us the tools we need to present an inclusive and diverse record of the student experience at OU, while also adding the OU experience to a national narrative,” said Bridget Burke, OU Libraries associate dean for special collections.
The photos displayed in the exhibition were taken from the Western History Collections section of the libraries and the image archives of the OU Daily.
Some of the exhibition’s featured images include Ada Lois Sipuel Fisher's challenge to racial discrimination in law school admissions in 1946, poet and civil rights activist Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones) on campus in 1977, and contemporary student activist responses to recent racist videos, including the #BetterTogether march of January 2019, said Todd Fuller, curator of the Western History Collections.
A series of symposiums will be hosted by Project STAND around the country over the next year, and will be funded by a federal grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Services, said Burke.
Burke said student activism is an important part of “a truly democratic society.”
The exhibit is on display in the Bizzell Memorial Library and the OU Libraries website.