#LISProChat lead-in – topic & questions for Mon Feb 22, 2021 – 8:30pm ET

TOPIC: Professionalism and the library industry

We last visited this topic in 2017 with a 4 year gap and so much changing I thought now seemed like a good time to revive this conversation. I said back that I had very strong opinions about “professionalism” as a concept those opinions have only deepened as I near the finish line of my MLIS. So as I said back then, instead of telling you about my personal opinion now (I figure that’s better saved for the chat), here are some inspiration articles for you with contrasting viewpoints on the idea of professionalism both in and out of the library industry:

Some newer sources on the topic

Sources from the last time we talked about this

Read these to see if anything in them still rings true.

  1. The Importance of Professionalism by Katie Clausen over at Hack Library School
  2. You Call It Professionalism; I Call It Oppression in a Three-Piece Suit by Carmen Rios at Everyday Feminism
  3. The Ten Commandments of Professionalism by Paula Black at Slaw.ca
  4. Librarianship Doesn’t Need Professionals by Sarah Crissinger at the ACRLog


We post the questions here in advance of the chat so you can decide whether or not this topic is of interest to you and/or prepare your answers in advance.

  • Q1 When someone says you need to look or act professionally what does that look like to you?
  • Q2 Do you think the concept of professionalism as it currently stands still works in our 2021 context? Or is it completely outdated?
  • Q3 How do you see professionalism at work in the LIS profession? Do you see any problems with it? What are they?
  • Q4 If we were to re-define the concept of professionalism for the current times what would it look like?


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