Document Title

Critical Information Literacy in Practice: A Bibliographic Review Essay of Critical Information Literacy, Critical Library Pedagogy Handbook, and Critical Literacy for Information Professionals




Recent publications demonstrate that librarians are actively developing a critical practice, a critical information literacy (CIL). The early threads of CIL scholarship are found in the work of Pawley (1998, 2003), Luke and Kapitzke (1999), Kapitzke (2003), Swanson (2004), Doherty (2005, 2007), Simmons (2005), Anderson (2006), Doherty and Ketchner (2005), Elmborg (2006), Whitworth (2006), Jacobs (2008), and others who point out the “social, political, and ideological construction of knowledge” (Luke & Kapitzke, 1999, p. 481) and the power of praxis in developing a transformative practice. Texts such as Critical Library Instruction: Theories and Methods (Accardi, Drabinski, & Kumbier, 2010) and Critical Theory for Library and Information Science: Exploring the Social from Across the Disciplines (Leckie, Given, & Buschman, 2010) mark a growing interest among librarians in bringing critical theory into practice. Subsequent texts, such as Feminist Pedagogy for Library Instruction (Accardi, 2013), Information Literacy and Social Justice: Radical Professional Praxis (Gregory & Higgins, 2013) and Informed Agitation: Library and Information Skills in Social Justice Movements and Beyond (Morrone, 2013), all limn the social justice orientations of critical librarianship. CIL scholarship has been further developed by Reale (2012), Beilin and Leonard (2013), Hicks (2013), Smith (2013), Beatty (2014), Drabinski (2014), Nicholson (2014), Schlesselmann-Tarango (2014), Schroeder (2014), and #critlib conversations.1 We are seeing a quickening of scholarship on CIL and Eamon Tewell, in “A Decade of Critical Information Literacy: A Review of the Literature,” (2015) remarks that “the literature of critical information literacy and librarianship gives no indication of slowing its pace” (p. 36).

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Book Review

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Communications in Information Literacy

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