The Schlesinger Library observed its 60th anniversary with two conferences: "Currents in Collecting: Documenting Underrepresented Communities" and "Gender, Race, and Rights in African-American Women's History," held respectively on Thursday, October 2, and Friday, October 3.
"Currents in Collecting" convened a panel of archivists, curators, librarians, and cultural collection administrators who assessed approaches to improving the documentation of minority communities.
Conference panelists and commentators included:
"Gender, Race, and Rights in African-American Women's History" convened some of the nation's most prominent scholars, who presented their work and discussed the ways that the study of US women's history overall has been shaped by the conjunction of gender and race. Among the participants were:
The two conferences reflected the complex role played by the Schlesinger in the field of women's history. It is the largest specialized library on women's history in the United States; a major repository for women's manuscripts and papers; an archive for numerous women's organizations; and a source of scholarship that reflects the new priorities of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study.
The library had its genesis in Radcliffe alumna Maud Wood Park's 1943 donation of materialscumulatively known as the Woman's Rights Collectionthat document the women's suffrage movement from 1848 to 1920. The library is named in honor of Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger for their dedication to women's history.