UMKC Libraries hosts African American Read-In events

Students, faculty and staff highlight cultural contributions of African American authors, poets and songwriters

As a part of Black History Month, UMKC Libraries is participating in The Twenty-Second National African American Read-In, which is sponsored by the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). UMKC Libraries is hosting read-in events at noon on Feb. 8 and 3 p.m. on Feb. 23 at Miller Nichols Library’s new first-floor Information Exchange (iX) Theatre, 800 E. 51st St., Kansas City, Mo. Admission is free and refreshments will be provided. For more information, call (816) 235-1526 or email

UMKC students, faculty and staff will read book excerpts, recite poems and perform dramatic and musical enactments to highlight the cultural contributions of African American authors, poets and songwriters. Chancellor Leo Morton will deliver the opening remarks at the Feb. 8 event. For a link to an audio slideshow and story about UMKC’s 2010 African American Read-In, visit

“Last year’s Read-In far exceeded our expectations,” said Gloria Tibbs, Information Commons/Instruction Librarian at Miller Nichols Library. “This year, we’ll build upon that success by making the celebration of African American literacy a traditional part of Black History Month activities and developing programs and exhibits that celebrate diversity.”

The National African American Read-In has been endorsed by the International Reading Association, and more than a million readers of all ethnic groups from the United States, the District of Columbia, the West Indies, African countries and more have participated.

Part of Miller Nichols Library’s first-floor renovations and Information Commons, the iX Theatre is adjacent to the library’s future Robot Cafe. When not in use for performances, the iX Theatre area is set with movable whiteboards, tables and chairs for flexible student study and work space. During performances, the area is reconfigured to seat as many as 60 guests. It is fitted with adjustable, theatrical lighting, two mounted overhead projectors and screens that retract into the ceiling.

About UMKC Libraries:

An essential partner in intellectual discovery, knowledge creation and empowerment, UMKC Libraries serves as the hub of learning activities for students, researchers and UMKC’s urban neighbors. Not only the home of books and print materials, the UMKC Libraries also provides access to a wide range of audio-visual media, over 300,000 sound recordings and rare and unique collections of books, photographs, manuscripts and maps. UMKC Libraries also links users to a world of scholarly information available through licensed online databases and journals and a vast network of reciprocal borrowing agreements with libraries around the world.

Miller Nichols Library, located on the Volker campus, is UMKC’s largest library and houses the general collection, Music/Media Library, LaBudde Special Collections and Marr Sound Archives. On the Health Sciences campus, the Dental Library and Health Sciences Library serve students and researchers in those disciplines. Along with its partners, the UMKC School of Law’s Leon E. Bloch Law Library and the Linda Hall Library, University Libraries is the comprehensive public research library for Kansas City and the very heart of UMKC.

About the University of Missouri-Kansas City

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 15,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience. For more information about UMKC, visit You can also find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and watch us on YouTube.

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