Highlighting Indigenous Continuity through the Library of Congress’ Indigenous Law Portal

DAVIS-CASTRO, Carla (2017) Highlighting Indigenous Continuity through the Library of Congress’ Indigenous Law Portal. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2017 – Wrocław, Poland – Libraries. Solidarity. Society. in Session 169 - Indigenous Matters.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/1659
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Language: English (Original)
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Abstract

Highlighting Indigenous Continuity through the Library of Congress’ Indigenous Law Portal

Indigenous legal systems are at once ancient and vibrant, continuous though challenged for centuries. A new and evolving classification system (“Law of the Indigenous Peoples in the Americas” Classes KIA-KIX) increases visibility and access to indigenous communities’ legal systems of the Western Hemisphere. This classification schedule demonstrates support for, or solidarity with, tribal groups by including traditional and historical names, creating name authority records for communities, councils, advocacy organizations, and places, as well as categorizing indigenous communities as jurisdictions within a global context. Launching the open access Indigenous Law Portal (http://www.loc.gov/law/help/indigenous-law-guide/index.php), a collaborative project between the Library of Congress’ Policy & Standards Division and the Law Library, connects researchers and libraries to tribal websites, digitized content, and other digital materials that highlight the legal pluralism of the Americas. The Portal includes many local, regional, and international indigenous advocacy organizations that show solidarity through action, research, and funding. In countries where indigenous groups cannot legally operate as governments, they often create nonprofits as an expression of indigenous autonomy and legal continuity. Solidarity also means being open to comments and suggestions regarding content and access. Central America is now available and plans to add South America make the classification and the Portal tools for a global public, as usage statistics attest. These library tools can be used to create a community unified by its awareness and respect for indigenous law.

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