The Global Literature in Libraries Initiative strives to raise the visibility of world literature for adults and children at the local, national and international levels. We intend to do so by facilitating close and direct collaboration between translators, librarians, publishers, editors, and educators, because we believe that these groups in collaboration are uniquely positioned to help libraries provide support and events to engage readers of all ages in a library framework that explores and celebrates literature from around the world.

We want to increase the visibility of international works in English translation so that more readers can enjoy the amazing diversity in these books and the perspectives they present. And we would like to do this by increasing cooperation between literary translators, international literature advocates, and librarians, who are already experts at guiding readers to new titles. Whether you are a children’s librarian or a YA literature blogger, a rural library director or a teacher at a large urban school with a diverse student population, we would welcome your insights as we explore collaborative opportunities to encourage readers to explore beyond the boundaries of their own culture and language.

Goals & Projects:

–  Annual Translated Young Adult Literature Award
– Book lists and themes tied to major translation awards and topics – perfect for library displays & orders
– Programming ideas for various library user groups: children, young adults, adults, etc.
– ALA conference involvement: workshops and sessions, networking through various ALA units and offices to explore the best ways to provide information and services to librarians
– Reviews of non-US translations to help librarians become better informed about what is being published around the world (for more information, see Review Guidelines)
– Advocacy on behalf of small publishers to increase their visibility
– General education efforts to help librarians understand more thoroughly the value of translated literature and of contemporary foreign-language literature
– Exploration of ways in which non-US publishers of English translations and non-US, non-English-language publishers can more easily promote their works among libraries

For more information about the Global Literature in Libraries Initiative, please read the following articles:

Global Literature in Libraries Initiative: Bridging the Translation-Reader Gap,” Porter Anderson

Global Literature in Libraries Initiative,” Lindsay Davis

The Global Literature in Libraries Initiative,” Lyn Miller-Lachmann

Where Do You Want to Go Today? Using Global Literature in Translation in Libraries,” Lyn Miller-Lachmann and Stacey Shapiro

Read the World! The Global Literature in Libraries Initiative,” Judith Sage and Chrissy Bellizzi

What Good Are Windows and Mirrors When the Windows Just Look At Your Own Backyard?” Elizabeth Bird

Kids Need Translations – An Idea Whose Time Has Come,” Annette Goldsmith

Where Do you Want to Go Today? Reading Global Literature in Translation,” Lyn Miller-Lachmann

All photographs were taken by Mario Sixtus and used with his permission

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