PLG’s 25th Anniversary – A Message to Members from Elaine Harger

Elaine Harger sent the following note to PLG members this morning…

Dear PLGers,

Yes, 25 years ago, about 20 librarians from up-and-down the east coast met in NYC for the first meeting of what became the Progressive Librarians Guild. We didn’t have a name until the midwinter conference of ALA in Chicago in 1990, but on Nov. 11, 1989, librarians from as far away as Boston and Washington DC and Minneapolis gathered at the Empire State College School of Labor Studies, where I was librarian, to discuss how we could bring critical and leftist perspectives and activism into librarianship.

So, today, I’m sending greetings of solidarity to each and every one of you, along with deepest thanks to everyone who has given freely their time, energy, and creativity to PLG activities — from organizing and participating in meetings, to contributing to the journal and various incarnations of newsletter and bulletin, to carrying out the Braverman Essay Contest, making and managing listservs and websites, finding great restaurants and other venues for PLG get-togethers, for establishing and running PLG chapters, and handling the bank account, membership lists, and doing all the mailings. This little organization could not exist without your efforts and dedication.

As Che Guevara wrote in a 1965 essay Man and Socialism in Cuba, “At the risk of seeming ridiculous, let me say that the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love.”

And, although I don’t think of myself as much of a revolutionary, I do hold great love toward all you PLGistas!


Elaine Harger

“I’d say I’m a revolutionary optimist. I believe that the good guys – the people – are going to win.” Amiri Baraka, 1934-2014