Call For Proposals

2019 marks two important centennials in Canadian labour history.  In the aftermath of the Great War, labour activists across Canada were concerned by low wages and poor working conditions.  These issues culminated in the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919, quashed on “Bloody Saturday” (June 21), which remains a red letter day in Canadian labour history a century later.  In Alberta, 1919 also marks the establishment of the Civil Service Association of Alberta (now the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees), which has become the province’s largest union over the past 100 years. 

Reflecting a century after these two important events in Canadian labour history, and looking to the field of library and archives, what is the state of labour in libraries and archives today?

An interested group of librarians, information professionals, students, and academics is hosting a one-day conference questioning the condition of Labour in Libraries in 2019. Held in on August 16, 2019, at the University of Alberta, this conference aims to extend critical discussions from April 2018’s inaugural Politics of Libraries.

In the spirit of 1919, we invite practitioners, scholars, activists, students, and other members of the general public interested in library allied information services to submit proposals on the issue of the Labour in Libraries in 2019. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Intellectual Freedom and Academic Freedom in library work
  • Professional and Paraprofessional relationships and tensions
  • Resistance in library services and work
  • Management – Employee Relations
  • Neoliberalism and its relationship to libraries
  • Precarity in library work
  • Feminization/gendering of labour in libraries

Please submit proposals (not to exceed 400 words) for individual (20 minute presentations) and group/panel contributions by midnight May 15, 2019, to

Proposals should be emailed as an attachment in your preferred format (open formats welcome!), using the following filename convention:

• Lastname_Title.<extension>

All submissions will undergo a double-blind peer review process undertaken by the conference organizers. Notification on the status of submissions will be made by May 30, 2019.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to contact the organizers at

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