Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Leadership in Libraries: A Focus on Ethnic-Minority Librarians

Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Leadership in Libraries: A Focus on Ethnic-Minority Librarians

Article excerpt

Leadership in Libraries: A Focus on Ethnic-Minority Librarians. By Maha Kumaran. Oxford: Chandos, 2012. 187 p. Paper $72.10 (ISBN: 978-1-84334-658-6).

This book addresses a topic not widely discussed: leadership roles of ethnic-minority librarians. Focusing on Canada, the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom, Kumaran broadens the definition of "ethnic minorities" beyond common usage, inviting readers to expand their views: "the terms ethnic-minorities, visible minorities, new immigrants, immigrants ... are used interchangeably and they all mean minorities in majority white countries" (3). Using definitions, examples, and statistical data, the author provides a clear snapshot of the status of ethnic minorities in library leadership.

The book's five chapters discuss differing definitions of leadership in different cultures and professions; the difference between management and leadership; leadership styles; leadership skills; and leadership in libraries. The introduction defines "visible minorities" and gives a modern-day example, President Barack Obama (6), and the following chapter discusses the some of the perils of the visible minority, such as their higher rates of unemployment. …

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