Racial Equity Resources

Let's Talk About Race by Julius Lester On the Playground: Our First Talk About Prejudice by Dr. Jillian Roberts I Walk With Vanessa by Kerascoet

The Aurora Public Library District was recently awarded a $1,000.00 Advancing Racial Equity Collection Development Grant by Indiana Humanities with funds from Lilly Endowment Inc. This grant has allowed the Aurora Public Library District to add a variety of materials to the Library District’s collection in regards to diversity, systemic racism, inequitable policing, and protest. The materials purchased through this grant were selected from a list of over 100 titles that had been curated by librarians, with input from humanities scholars. 

Separate is Never Equal by Duncan Tonatiuh Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer (DVD) You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

It is the hope of the Aurora Public Library District that these materials will help our communities learn about racial equity. In selecting titles to purchase, it was the goal of the Library District to offer materials that are appropriate for all ages and in a variety of formats. There are picture books to share with young children, books to encourage frank family discussions, and items to challenge us all to better understand the events that have taken place in our country over the past months and years. Reading a book or watching a DVD on racial justice can serve as an entry point, but we also hope that these resources will lead to deeper reflection and to conversations throughout our community. Lists of the purchased items have been provided to local educators for use in their classrooms, and we also welcome their use by other community organizations.

The purchased materials will be on display at the Aurora Public Library and the Dillsboro Public Library throughout the month of November. A full list of the new items is available on request.

This is My America by Kim Johnson Guilty Until Proven Guilty (DVD)  Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People by Banaji and Greenwald

Indiana Author Awards

The Eugene and Marilyn  Glick  Indiana Authors Awards celebrate the best books by Indiana authors written in eight different categories and published during the previous two years.You can check out these books in print at either the Aurora Public Library or the Dillsboro Public Library. If you prefer to read or listen digitally, just download the titles from the Indiana

Attucks by Phillip HooseChildren’s Award

Attucks! tells the true story of the all-Black Crispus Attucks High School basketball team that broke the color barrier in segregated 1950s Indiana. By winning the 1955 state championship, 10 teens—including eventual college and NBA star Oscar Robertson—shattered the myth of Black inferiority. Hoose is a widely acclaimed author of books, essays, stories, songs and articles, including the National Book Award-winning Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice.

 

 

 

Fiction AwardThe Life List of Adrian Mandrick by Chris White

A pill-popping anesthesiologist and avid birder embarks on a quest to find the extremely rare Ivory-billed Woodpecker only to become stranded in the thick swamplands of Florida’s panhandle. There he confronts past and present failures, the cost of his obsessions and what’s truly important in life. Although White is a widely performed and award-winning playwright and screenwriter (as well as an actor and vocalist), The Life List of Adrian Mandrick is her first novel.

 

 

 

Pimp My Airship by Maurice BroaddusGenre Award

Indianapolis is recast as a steampunk, sci-fi landscape in Broaddus’ work where themes of power, racism and mass incarceration of people of color are explored. The fast-paced adventure through an alternative Indy follows an unlikely trio of Black compatriots into a battle for control of the nation and the soul of their people. Born in London, England, Broaddus has lived most of his life in Indianapolis.

 

 

 

 

Non-Fiction Award The Book of Delights by Ross Gay

A collection of essays written over the course of a tumultuous year, The Book of Delights reminds readers of the purpose and pleasure of praising, extolling and celebrating ordinary wonders. A New York Times best-seller and product of a commitment to write daily essays about life’s simple delights, the essays in The Book of Delights are funny, philosophical and moving.

 

 

 

 

Sightseer in This Killing City by Eugene GloriaPoetry Award

Set in the aftermath of presidential elections in the U.S. and Philippines, Sightseer in This Killing City is an argument for grace and perseverance in an era of bombast and bullies. The John Rabb Emison Professor of Creative and Performing Arts and English Professor at DePauw University, Gloria is the author of three other books of poems.

 

 

 

 

 

Young Adult Award All the Things We Do in the Dark by Saundra Mitchell

Told through the eyes of a teenage girl, All the Things We Do in the Dark, finalist for a Lambda Literary Award, addresses challenging issues affecting young people—including rape, PTSD, mental health and victim blaming—and the many ways people work through trauma. Mitchell, a Greenwood, Ind.-based author of young-adult novels, anthologies and nonfiction series, has seen more than 400 of her screenplays produced as films in conjunction with Dreaming Tree Films.

 

 

Emerging Author Award

For fans of Wild, a searing memoir about one woman’s road to hope following the death of her troubled brother, told through the series of cars that accompanied her.

Growing up in a blue-collar family in the Midwest, Melissa Stephenson longed for escape. Her wanderlust was an innate reaction to the powerful personalities around her, and came too from her desire to find a place in the world where her artistic ambitions wouldn’t be thwarted. She found in automobiles the promise of a future beyond Indiana state lines.

It’s Going, Going, Gone!

The Crossroads: Changes in Rural America exhibit opened on September 7th and will be leaving the Dillsboro Public Library soon. The last day to view this Smithsonian-curated exhibit will be Sunday, October 20th from 1-4 pm. That’s only one more week, and the Library will be closed on Monday, October 14th for Columbus Day. So far, we’ve had over 1,000 people visit the Dillsboro Public Library for this, so don’t let the time get away from you!

  

Thanks again to the town of Dillsboro for their tremendous support and assistance in bringing this to our Library District and to Indiana Humanities for the opportunity!

At the Crossroads

We’ve been planning, we’ve been anticipating, and we’ve been building! The Crossroads: Change in Rural America exhibit at the Dillsboro Public Library is officially open on Saturday, September 7, 2019. You can explore the exhibit whenever the Dillsboro Public Library is open, including special exhibit hours on Sundays from 1-4 pm. We just ask that if you plan to bring a large group, please call ahead to let us know.

You can get a sneak preview of the exhibit by viewing this video produced by Indiana Humanities. You can also read about the exhibit at this link to Discovering Home: Your Friendly Guide to Rural Indiana. When you tour the exhibit, we have a special photo opportunity for you; take a picture and tag it #RuralCrossroads.

Many Americans consider rural communities to be endangered and hanging on by a thread—suffering from brain drain, inadequate schools, and a barren, overused landscape. Why should revitalizing the rural places left behind matter to those who remain, those who left, and those who will come in the future? Because there is much more to the story of rural America.

Crossroads: Change in Rural America offers small towns a chance to look at their own paths to highlight the changes that affected their fortunes over the past century. The exhibition will prompt discussions about what happened when America’s rural population became a minority of the country’s population and the ripple effects that occurred.

Despite the massive economic and demographic impacts brought on by these changes, America’s small towns continue to creatively focus on new opportunities for growth and development. Economic innovation and a focus on the cultural facets that make small towns unique, comfortable, and desirable have helped many communities create their own renaissance. The future is bright for much of rural America as small towns embrace the notion that their citizens and their cultural uniqueness are important assets.

We hope that hosting the Crossroads exhibit will allow people in southeastern Indiana an opportunity to think about the changes that have taken place and how local communities can respond to the change. Please bring your family and friends with you to the exhibit and talk about the content. What in the display challenges you? What can you do to enhance the sense of community in your hometown? What assets do you bring to the table?

Last spring, the Aurora Public Library District asked Dillsboro Elementary School students to write about their vision for Dillsboro. The essays and drawing will be on display during the exhibit, along with the photographs we received for our Dillsboro Photo Contest. We also have 2 special evening programs tied to the exhibit.

  • On Thursday, September 26th, at the Dillsboro Public Library, Pamela Carralero from Purdue University will present “Valuing Hoosier Communities and Environments through Barbara Kingsolver’s Flight Behavior.” The program begins at 6:30 pm and will encourage those attending to reflect on how and why we value the Hoosier environment we live within.
  • On Wednesday, October 9th, at 6:30 pm at the Dillsboro Public Library, Indiana singer/songwriter Kevin Stonerock will perform and will share the way his rural upbringing has influenced his music.

Thank you to all the local people who have participated in bringing this exhibit to town. You have been a wonderful example of the community spirit!

Smithsonian Logo

Quantum Leap Shelfie Challenge

Explore the spirit of possibility and problem-solving with the Quantum Leap Shelfie Challenge, a program sponsored by Indiana Humanities. The goal is to bridge the humanities with science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine, which we can do simply by reading! Below are ten books about women and girls in science. If you read five books and tell Indiana Humanities what you thought, they will send you a $10 Amazon gift card to buy your next great read! For more information, follow the link to the Indiana Humanities website.

The Aurora Public Library District owns copies of:

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly

The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly

You could also request copies of the next books through Interlibrary Loan:

Finding Wonders: Three Girls Who Changed Science by Jeannine Atkins

Primates: The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey and Birute Galdikas by Jim Ottaviani and Maris Wicks

Radioactive! How Irene Curie and Lise Meitner Revolutionized Science and Changed the World by Winifred Conkling

The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Computer by Sydney Padua

Wonder at the Edge of the World by Nicole Helgut

Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors and Trailblazers Who Changed History by Sam Maggs

Happy Reading! Good luck!