Taking a critical eye toward the Little Free Libraries® movement, we will interrogate the outcomes of the non-profit corporation’s mission – are LFL®s really making an impact or are they simply feel-good projects for the privileged classes? In the age of austerity, are they presenting a reasonable alternative to funding libraries? Are the values espoused within the library community shared by the LFL® stewards? How can the enthusiastic support be harnessed for a robust collaboration between community groups to make the biggest impact on the people who need it most? The root causes behind lack of access to books and illiteracy – poverty, inequality, and racism – are systemic issues requiring significant and sustained attention from governments, community organizations, educators and citizens alike. A whimsical box of books may contribute to community building, but the real work of social justice is obfuscated when the impact of such initiatives is overstated.
– Be able to constructively critique the movement and understand how LFL® is part of the non-profit industrial complex.
– An understanding of ideal community-lead approaches to neighbourhood book exchanges.