UT Faculty Council approves resolution protesting removal of Fine Arts Library books

At its meeting today, the University of Texas’ Faculty Council adopted a resolution objecting to any further removal of books, periodicals and other materials from the Fine Arts Library, reported the American-Statesman.

In the meeting, faculty and students voiced their opposition to the recent removal of more than 75,000 books, music scores and periodicals from the UT Fine Arts Library to make room for the College of Fine Arts new School of Design and Creative Technologies.

Those opposed to the removals say Dean Douglas Dempster of the College of Fine Arts, with the approval of Vice Provost and Director of Libraries Lorraine Haricombe, made the decision to remove the library materials without any input from or notice to faculty, staff and students.

Now, the Fine Arts Library holds about 40 percent of its collection on site while some 60 percent of its collections are housed off-site. Some of the removed materials were sent to the Joint Library Facility shared with Texas A&M University in College Station.

Outside the Faculty Council meeting, several dozen students protested, a gathering organized by the group Save UT Libraries. 

Save UT Librairies has published numerous public statements and open letters from concerned students, faculty and alumni who oppose the library changes.

Last week, curators at UT’s Blanton Museum of Art issued an open letter to Dempster and Haircombe expressing their concern.

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And yesterday, Suzanne Preston Blier, Harvard University professor of fine arts and of African and African American studies, who is the current president of the College Art Association, posted a letter.

Almost 5000 signatures have been collected on change.org petition.

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