What if Elder is a facet? Knowledge Keepers in the OPAC?


What if Elder is facet? This online resource begins with the question of how Indigenous knowledges are generally represented in OPACs and explores an alternative. Using the Human Library and Human Books as examples of popular event-based library programmes, it takes a closer look at how Medicine Hat Public Library stands out in including their Human Books in their OPAC, supporting year-long commitments to community members whose subject expertise are searcheable and requestable (pre-pandemic) through their OPAC. Could their Human Library collection, and the way it is managed, be a starting point to explore an alternative way for Indigenous knowledge keepers to be represented in the OPAC? What are some potential challenges? How can critical cataloguing and OPAC user-interface design create new opportunities for building and nurturing relationships, and investigating different knowledges and knowledge sharing?

Fong Ku:

Fong Ku works at the Alberta University of the Arts, Luke Lindoe Library as Reference and Learning Services Specialist. Her path to libraries started out in international development where she gained an appreciation for rigorous research, complex problems and nimble responses to dynamic environments. Three quarter’s of the way through a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, she left the studio to spend more time supporting teaching and learning through art librarianship.