Title

Friends, Peace and Sanctuary: A Case Study

Location

Breakout room 2

Start Date

10-8-2018 2:20 PM

End Date

10-8-2018 3:10 PM

Description

We are proposing a presentation session on a case study. Swarthmore College Libraries and the College’s Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility is engaged in a two year project, Friends Peace, and Sanctuary, that seeks to bring historical narratives of migration and displacement into conversation with current experiences of Iraqi and Syrian refugees through the medium of the book arts. Five established book artists have been invited to work with a group of around fifteen recently resettled Iraqis and Syrians to collaborate on new artistic works through a series of ten workshops. Given that the project was conceived to be as fully bilingual (Arabic and English) as possible, we have hired students to translate archival materials on migration and refugees into Arabic so that all of our collaborators may have access to these materials.

In parallel to the project work, Katie Price and Peggy Seiden are teaching a class (Spring 2018) that engages students in the Project’s work through observation, interviews, reflection and research utilizing a variety of disciplinary methods. The students’ final project is a piece of public scholarship that brings together their experiences in the workshops, interviews, and research findings.

In this presentation, Price, Seiden, and Seesman will discuss the project findings to date and share what they’ve learned from collaborating with refugee resettlement organizations, libraries, civic engagements centers, students, faculty, and staff.

Short bio of the presenter(s)

Katie Price currently serves as the Assistant Director for Co-Curricular Programming and Outreach for Swarthmore’s Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility, as well as co-director of the Friends, Peace and Sanctuary project. Katie earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of Pennsylvania and has held a Mellon Post-doctoral Fellowship at the Jackman Humanities Institute at the University of Toronto. Throughout her career, she has been committed to opening up conversations between disparate communities and disciplines. In addition to her work at the Lang Center, she teaches courses in English, Environmental Studies and Peace and Conflict Studies; she publishes critical, creative, and other types of writing and serves as the Interviews Editor for the online magazine Jacket2.

Suzanne Seesman is a Philadelphia based artist, writer, and curator. She holds a BFA in Sculpture from Ohio University and an MFA from Tyler School of Art and is an Alumni of the member run gallery Vox Populi. Suzanne has received awards in recognition and support of her work including the Cloud Artist Prize and The Ilya and Emilia Kabakov Fellowship and has been an Artist in Residence at The International Ceramics Studio (ICS) in Kecskemet, Hungary and The Vermont Studio Center. Suzanne is currently the Artistic Director of Friends, Peace, and Sanctuary, a project of Swarthmore College Library made possible by the generous support of The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage and an Instructor of Visual Studies at Tyler School of Art at Temple University.

Peggy Seiden is the College Librarian at Swarthmore College as well as co-director of the Friends, Peace and Sanctuary project. She holds a BA from Colby College, an MA from the University of Toronto and an MLIS from Rutgers University. Prior to joining Swarthmore she held positions at Skidmore College, Penn State and Carnegie Mellon Universities. Seiden has researched and published on user information seeking behavior, library management and special collections including Past or Portal: Enhancing Undergraduate Learning through Special Collections and Archives in which she edited the section on service learning. She currently serves as Chair of the editorial board of Choice.

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Aug 10th, 2:20 PM Aug 10th, 3:10 PM

Friends, Peace and Sanctuary: A Case Study

Breakout room 2

We are proposing a presentation session on a case study. Swarthmore College Libraries and the College’s Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility is engaged in a two year project, Friends Peace, and Sanctuary, that seeks to bring historical narratives of migration and displacement into conversation with current experiences of Iraqi and Syrian refugees through the medium of the book arts. Five established book artists have been invited to work with a group of around fifteen recently resettled Iraqis and Syrians to collaborate on new artistic works through a series of ten workshops. Given that the project was conceived to be as fully bilingual (Arabic and English) as possible, we have hired students to translate archival materials on migration and refugees into Arabic so that all of our collaborators may have access to these materials.

In parallel to the project work, Katie Price and Peggy Seiden are teaching a class (Spring 2018) that engages students in the Project’s work through observation, interviews, reflection and research utilizing a variety of disciplinary methods. The students’ final project is a piece of public scholarship that brings together their experiences in the workshops, interviews, and research findings.

In this presentation, Price, Seiden, and Seesman will discuss the project findings to date and share what they’ve learned from collaborating with refugee resettlement organizations, libraries, civic engagements centers, students, faculty, and staff.