Remembering the Holocaust: the role of the Library

Remembering the Holocaust: the role of the Library

Caroline Thomas

Director of Library and Learning Support Services

Libraries have always been seen as the home of knowledge, information and curators of the past. At the University of Surrey, we are proud that within our Library and Learning Support Services we not only protect the freedom of intellectual voices, but embody the inclusive practices that we hope to see in the world at large.

Our department supports students in achieving and fulfilling their own personal potential so that every learner has the opportunity to go out in the world confident that they have the skills to find, use and understand all the information available to them. In a world where fact and fiction are so often indistinguishable and where powerfully presented arguments can all too easily mislead, we are committed to encouraging and supporting the development of skills that empower learners to evaluate objectively the information that they encounter.

We see each learner as an individual, help them find their academic voice and support them in how to use that voice to join the wider conversations in the world.  We are continually evolving our collections to embrace different perspectives, to demonstrate that knowledge comes in all shapes and sizes and that members of the University have access to the information they need to make well-informed decisions.

We provide a safe, neutral space that all are welcome in to, designed with our learners at the heart.

By continuing to do what libraries do best: curating knowledge, sharing and educating our learners in how to evaluate and use the powerful words at their disposal we can contribute to creating the open minded and inclusive society that we aspire to.

In order to mark Holocaust Memorial day, the Library & Learning Support Services are putting together a week long display about how libraries, information and critical thinking can help counter activities that feed or support such atrocities. We will be sharing a selection of materials from our collections, creating a collaborative reading list to highlight and share resources (, and inviting staff and students to contribute to a book celebrating examples of diversity and open-mindedness around the University.

The display will be running from Monday 28 January on Level 1 of the Library, so do come along and see what we have to offer.