The September Project Blog

Come here to learn about the goings-on of The September Project, a grassroots effort to foster public events in all communities on September 11.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Human Rights in the Age of Terrorism

The Edina Public Library had a combined September Project and Great Decisions program on September 11. There were close to 80 people in attendance for "Human Rights in the Age of Terrorism". The topic included so many issues that the discussion could have continued much beyond the allotted time period. The program was presented twice, at 4 pm and again at 6 pm as there had been so much interest prior to this occasion. Tom Hanson, a retired foreign service officer with the U.S. State Department and a library neighbor is a frequent and very popular speaker at these meetings.
I'm heartened by the local interest in issues of the day and the dedication of citizens to learn more and to discuss their ideas and concerns. This is one way to contribute and be responsible as we try to understand the paths our country is taking and how these relate to the global community. I'm so proud of Sarah and David for the creativity and ability to communicate their ideas and enthusiasm not only to the people in the United States but the entire world. Their idea of not telling each library what should be presented but empowering them to use their own creativity as appropriate to their community was brilliant. I guess I can say that as Sarah's Mom. :)

Sunday, September 17, 2006

the september project continues in singapore

Singapore's National Library Board is contributing to The September Project with a wonderful effort to collect young peoples' ideas:

Here in Singapore, the NLB wants you to write about literacy or peace or how literacy can bring about peace. If you’re not good with words, use any medium you are comfortable with to spread the message. Selected entries will be shared digitally with an international audience. The Top 3 entries will stand to win attractive NLB limited edition collectibles!

David and I were asked to offer comments on submissions as they come in, and are excited to share the first few we've received.

This is an impressive original artwork with the artist's statement to the right. Nice job!

This thoughtful submission succinctly expresses what many people, even those living in America, contend with when considering the events of 9/11.

To learn more about this project, visit the YouthSG blog and be sure to share your comments!

Monday, September 11, 2006

SHARE your thoughts!

There are so many events going on today, tomorrow, days past, and future, and I hope everyone is experiencing good turnouts and is pleased with the results of their programs.

A request: please share what happened at your event, either here or on the listserv!

september project events in argentina, italy, and peru

from ana a. chiesa, coordinator of proyecto CIBA in córdoba, argentina:
    El Proyecto CIBA anuncia que el próximo 14 de Septiembre realizará dos taller destinados a chicos de cuarto y quinto grado de escuelas rurales Argentinas.

    Uno trabajara sobre la Alfabetización en información: "Todo lo que no sabemos sobre los libros."

    El otro es un taller de animación a la lectura: "Taller de Lunas y brujas."

    Ambas actividades son en adhesión al Proyecto Septiembre.
from patrizia gaggero, of biblioteca berio, in genova, italy:
    ...a sostegno di punti di incontro in tutto il mondo l’11 settembre

    Lunedì 11 settembre 2006

    Sala Chierici -17.00
    “Operatori tra guerre e diritti negati”
    Relatore: Mizio Ferraris (Emergency Genova)

    “I bambini kamikaze: cause e soluzioni
    Relatore Pejman Abdolmohammadi (Comitato Unicef Genova)

    Biblioteca – Piano terra – 8,30/19,00
    Mostra fotografica: “La Guerra com’è”
    a cura di Emergency Genova

    Mostra bibliografica: “Per una cultura del dialogo e della non violenza”
    a cura della Biblioteca Berio

    Sala Mostre 14.00/18.00
    Olii, pastelli e prints di Natalie Saiph Massone
    Fotografie e video di Ugo Nuzzo
    Il ricavato della mostra verrà devoluto alla Fondazione contro la Fibrosi Cistica (Cystic Fibrosis Worldwide), una malattia cronica che colpisce soprattutto i bambini dei paesi più poveri e colpiti dalla guerra.

    La guerra com’è
    In questa mostra, attraverso testi, fotografie e testimonianze raccolte sul campo, Emergency racconta i caratteri delle guerre attuali: la preponderanza di vittime civili (il 90 per cento, tre su dieci bambini), gli effetti dei conflitti che durano oltre la loro fine dichiarata, il problema delle mine antiuomo – e il suo lavoro sul fronte medico-sanitario e su quello della diffusione di una cultura di pace.
and from roberto bustamante, coordinator of the cholonautas project, in lima, peru:

Friday, September 08, 2006

The September Project in WIRED Magazine

The September Project is publicized in a variety of media outlets, in a variety of ways. We're always excited to see how librarians and others get the word out, and wanted to share this advertisement that's getting a lot of buzz--the latest issue of WIRED Magazine included The September Project in its monthly calendar!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

singapore and the september project

there is something quite exciting about collaborating with singapore's national library board (or NLB).

for the third straight year, NLB libraries will participate in the september project. this year, all 22 singaporean public libraries, which includes both regional libraries and community libraries, have joined the project. in other words, the september project can be found across the whole country!

for over two years, sarah and i have corresponded and collaborated with ivan chew, a librarian with NLB, an internationally known blogger, and an extremely creative thinker. in 2004, ivan put together a pictures of peace contest for library patrons. in 2005, ivan worked with beverly holmes hughes at sugar grove public library in illinois to have a live cross-country chat between youth on september 11.

this year, the project grows. organized by wei lin (NLB's adult & young peoples' services librarian), julian lim (youth portal manager of Youth.SG), and ivan, their september project events ask youth to express themselves:
Here in Singapore, the NLB wants you think write about literacy or peace or how literacy can bring about peace. If you’re not good with words, use any medium you are comfortable with to spread the message. Selected entries will be shared digitally with an international audience. The Top 3 entries will stand to win attractive NLB limited edition collectibles!
(they have even designed a great poster for the event.)

Youth.SG, a blog for singapore youth, will host much of the creative content (and already have begun to generate fascinating posts) and we here at the september project blog will also showcase some of the work of the youth.

this project really excites me for many reasons. here's a few:
  1. too often, adults ask youth to create - but we ask them to create within a narrow set of media, usually a written essay. wei, julian, and ivan are way ahead of us - they smartly encourage youth to express themselves in the medium of their choosing: they can post to their blogs, upload to youtube, or send NLB the url of a web site; they can design digital artifacts like jpegs, 3G mobile phone clips, or MP3s; they can write on postcards, paper, scrapes of paper, or anything that can be digitally scanned or photographed. bravo!

  2. september project events are local events - they are civic events, usually hosted by a public, academic, or school library, that address an issue or set of issues relevant to that particular community, town, or city. what NLB is doing, however, is national. this year's events in singapore represent, i believe, the first attempt to organize september project events on a national level. the fact that this is happening in singapore is a factor of the geographic size of the country. yet another - and more important - factor seems to be that NLB is an effective, creative, and flexible library system.

  3. i think it's great that the focus of the events is global. NLB's events encourage youth to express their own feelings and ideas about topics that transcend national borders. it seems to me that imagination is what's needed most these days and when youth are encouraged to imagine - and to imagine across borders - positive things happen.
sarah and i have never met ivan, wei, and julian - but it sure is nice to call them friends and collaborators. i look forward to the day when we get to meet face to face.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Art to Learn From: the Lithgow Public Library

Want to start a conversation around people who made a difference? Go to the Lithgow Public Library in Augusta, Maine from September 5th to September 18th and view the exhibit, "Americans Who Tell the Truth."

This is no ordinary art exhibit. On display will be a selection of portraits from Robert Shetterly's series of important Americans in history "who have shown great courage and conviction in standing up for what they believe in."

This is no ordinary list of people. From Harriet Tubman, to Susan B. Anthony, to lesser known, but important figures such as Ossie Davis and Harry Hay, these portraits will spark conversation and create moments where new perspectives are shared.

What I love about this exhibit is that is has the potential to make people consider different perspectives, to think about what and who they admire, and to realize that much can be learned from people who possess differing views--and that's what makes our country great.

Learn more about this impressive event by visiting the Lithgow Public Library's web site and also make sure to visit Robert Shetterly's web site.

The people of Augusta, Maine are lucky to have such an impressive exhibit on display in their community.

Monday, August 28, 2006

students making media about september 11 - and talking about the media they made on september 11 - at depauw university

i've never met kevin howley, an associate professor of media studies at depauw university in indiana, but his book, community media: people, places, and communication technologies, is on my read-this-book-asap list.

on monday, september 11, 2006 at 4 pm in the peeler auditorium on the depauw university campus, a video memorial produced by and featuring depauw university students will be shown with a moderated discussion to follow. here's the press release:
Student Video, "The September Project," Premieres at DePauw University on 9/11 Anniversary

GREENCASTLE, IN. -- August 28, 2006 -- "The September Project," a video memorial produced by and featuring DePauw University students, will have its world premiere on the fifth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States.

Produced in conjunction with DePauw's Roy O. West Library, "The September Project" features student recollections of the events of 9/11. Undergraduates also discuss how America has changed in the five years since the terrorist attacks and consider the role of the public library in democratic societies.

"The September Project" was one of several video projects-including public service announcements, advertisements, "man on the street"-style interviews, and news features-produced by students enrolled in DePauw's First Year Seminar, "Video as Cultural Politics."

According to project supervisor, Dr. Kevin Howley, associate professor of media studies at DePauw University, "The September Project" had enormous educational value. "Aside from providing a hands-on lesson in video production, students came away from this project with a greater understanding of video's capacity to promote dialogue and debate. Students came to appreciate the value of community video in amplifying voices, opinions and perspectives that are rarely heard in mainstream media."

"The September Project" gets its name from a grassroots effort to encourage communities, in conjunction with local libraries, to provide a forum for people to discuss a host of issues: democracy, war and peace, terrorism, militarism, religion, and conflict resolution.

The September Project will foster civic events around the world on September 11th such as poetry readings, film screenings, art competitions, public lectures and community forums. The September Project events are designed to bring people into their local libraries and get them talking about important issues in politics, culture and religion in a safe and civil manner.

"The September Project" will be screened on Monday, September 11, 2006 at 4PM in the Peeler Auditorium on the DePauw University campus. A moderated discussion will follow. Admission is free and the public is welcome.


Dr. Kevin Howley
Associate Professor of Media Studies
DePauw University
(765) 658-4491
i love this september project event!

i love how the event engages university students - and the greater university community - with media made by students. i love how the media text under discussion was made by students enrolled in a first year seminar called "video as cultural politics." bravo!