The Fargo Public Library has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Muslim Journeys Bookshelf, a collection of books, films, and other resources that will introduce the complex history and culture of Muslims in the United States and around the world. The Fargo Public Library is one of only 842 public, academic, and community college libraries across the country selected to receive this grant. The award provides two complete sets of materials, one for the Main Library and one for the Dr. James Carlson Library. Each library will receive 25 books, three films, and access for one year to Oxford Islamic Studies Online. These bookshelf items will be available to the public starting March 1. In seeking this award, the Fargo Public Library partnered with North Dakota State University’s College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences and Fargo-Moorhead’s Center for Interfaith Projects; these groups will develop programs to promote the collection and support the goals of the NEH’s Bridging Cultures initiative.
Developed by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association (ALA), and based on the advice of scholars, librarians, and other public programming experts, the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf is intended to address both the need and desire of the American public for trustworthy and accessible resources about Muslim beliefs and practices, and the cultural heritage associated with Islamic civilizations.
Programming for this grant includes a community conversation about how our society welcomes and understands Muslims, as well as a screening of the film Koran by Heart (directed by Greg Barker, produced by HBO documentary films, 2011), followed by a discussion of topics raised in the film.
A complete listing of materials included in the grant can be found on the Fargo Public Library’s website, www.fargolibrary.org. North Dakota State University Libraries was also awarded a Muslim Journeys Bookshelf. For information on the award or related events, contact Fargo Public Library Deputy Director Beth Postema at firstname.lastname@example.org or Betsy Birmingham, Associate Dean, Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Elizabeth.Birmingham@ndsu.edu.