spatial justice

From Art and criticism : monographs and studies / by Theodore Child (1892)

90th chat, Monday September 18 2017: spatial justice: white supremacy in public art and architecture
6pm Pacific / 7pm Mountain / 8pm Central / 9pm Eastern*
*note special evening Monday time

moderated by @a_meeksie & @vin_alyssa
Storify (pdf, html) by @violetbfox


  • spatial justice: Spatial justice brings together social justice and space. How space is organized (what and who occupies any given space) is a crucial dimension of human societies, reflecting social realities and (in)justices while also influencing social relations (Henri Lefebrve, 1968, 1972). This concept can be used as a guiding tool to understand and reflect on solutions to social injustices that are embedded in both space and society.
  • public art: art in any media that has been planned and executed with the intention of being staged in the physical public domain, usually outside and accessible to all.

Suggested resources:

  • Brook, Freeda, Dave Ellenwood, and Althea Eannace Lazzaro. “In pursuit of antiracist social justice: denaturalizing whiteness in the academic library.” Library Trends 64.2 (2015): 246-284. (especially section on “The racialized space of the academic library” pdf)

Discussion questions:

  • Q1. What is the function of public art and architecture where you work/live? #critlib
  • Q2. What narratives/whose history is dominant in and around lib*/archives in your community? #critlib
  • Q3. If lib* take an antiracist approach to cultivating culturally responsive spaces, what do we need to examine first and why? #critlib
  • Q4. How can we can work to counteract & subvert oppressive spatial elements, such as monuments that function as microaggressions? #critlib
  • Q5. What barriers might we encounter in trying to do this work in our profession & how can we overcome those barriers? #critlib

Additional resources: