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RESILIENCE: “Fire and Flood” and A Digital Archive of Hurricane Maria

March 10, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


PLEASE NOTE: Attendees are encouraged to watch the film, “Fire and Flood: Queer Resilience in the Era of Climate Change” in advance of this lecture and will receive streaming instructions immediately after registering.

In September 2017, Hurricane Maria devastated the U.S. commonwealth of Puerto Rico. This deadly hurricane left unprecedented destruction in its wake, while dangerously inadequate government relief left so many victims stranded. “Fire and Flood: Queer Resilience in the Era of Climate Change,” reveals how one marginalized community came to its own rescue. Personal stories in the documentary show how innovative forms of mutual aid not only delivered critical services, but also created an enduring infrastructure of support for the island’s Queer community. Their story of resilience can be instructive for all of us.

This virtual program will be a presentation about the “Emergency Response Archive of Puerto Rico,” by Valeria Fernández-González, who was profiled in the film and will represent the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras (UPRRP); Mirerza González Vélez, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs of the College of Humanities at UPRRP;  Christina Boyles, Assistant Professor of Culturally-engaged Digital Humanities, Andy Boyles Petersen, Digital Scholarship Librarian, and Elisa Landaverde, Special Collections LGBTQ+ Librarian, of Michigan State University Libraries; and Ricia Anne Chansky of University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez. With the support of a $325,000 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the “Emergency Response Archive of Puerto Rico” will be a digital open access repository of Puerto Rican artifacts of disaster pertaining to Hurricane María (2017), the Guayanilla earthquakes (2020), and COVID19 (2020), to be housed in the project’s Omeka S site, with copy cat collections available at the Digital Library of the Caribbean and at Michigan State University. Learn more here.

This program is a part of the monthly series, “Resilience.” New Canaan Library is a proud recipient of the American Library Association’s “Resilient Communities” grant and has partnered with New Canaan Land Trust and Planet New Canaan to organize public programming focused on the themes of the films, “Fire and Flood: Queer Resilience in the Era of Climate Change” and “Decoding the Weather Machine.” These programs provide a fascinating window into what you thought you knew about climate change, and inspire participants to take local action to mitigate its consequences. Community members will be invited to learn from individuals and organizations that will share both local and national data and perspectives.


March 10, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
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New Canaan Land Trust
New Canaan Library
Planet New Canaan