Last week I wrote a blog post about burnout, specifically, my own struggles with burnout these past few months. I ranted. I wrote. I cried. I wrote some more. What I didn’t stop to consider before I clicked published was the way some of my writing might make someone feel.
I was frustrated, and remain so, about what I believe is a general devaluing of feminized labor in libraries (e.g. teaching, cataloging, etc.), and librarianship’s tendency as a field to constantly want the next big thing. It makes me feel #libraryleftbehind and like there’s not a clear place for me, and others like me who focus on teaching information literacy to undergraduates in the library of the future where everyone rides hoverboards.
What I didn’t mean to do was call out people in non-teaching focused library positions, such as those who work in digital scholarship, web services, user experience research, digital humanities, scholarly communication, or other specializations. The people in these positions do good work–important work–and should be valued. They help improve the work I do as a teacher, and I have much to learn from them.
That unintended call out was wrong, and I am sorry.
I don’t want to play at competing for status at the expense of others. I am still frustrated that teaching jobs in academic libraries seem to be the only ones open to recent graduates, and that teaching in academic libraries doesn’t seem to be a specialization. I don’t want teaching elevated above others’ jobs. I just want to feel like the work I do is important to my library and my college, to my colleagues and my peers. I think it’s what we all want: to matter, to feel valued.
Apologies again. I value you.
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