Main Article Content

Voices of dissent: LIWO, civil rights and the library community in South Africa in the 1990s

Christopher Merrett


The political context out of which LIWO developed is examined together with its commitment to Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The organisation's original characteristics are described in detail: its political independence, federal structure, commitment to professional standards, internationalism and combative approach to repression, for instance. It is argued that given the development of a new hegemony in the new South Africa, LIWO, now defunct, has lessons to offer progressive librarians, amongst them clear principles, good local organisation, high quality research and communication, commitment and courage, and appropriate international linkage.

Innovation No.22 2004: 30-34