Category: CALS Roberts Library Blog

Book Flood: Exploring Free Will and Memory

Some years back, my wife read about the Icelandic tradition of Jolabokaflod, which translates literally as “Christmas book flood” and entails giving and receiving new books on Christmas Eve. She liked the idea of this, and so each year we go to our local independently owned bookstore a few days before Christmas and try to find a book for each other.

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From the Archives to the Community: Dunbar’s Rich Legacy

The neighborhood surrounding what now is Paul Laurence Dunbar Junior High School has historically been predominantly Black. Until the early twentieth century, when restricted additions began being developed in Little Rock, the city’s neighborhoods were not rigidly segregated by race, but certain areas such as the “East End,” the “South End,” and the neighborhood around Dunbar always were more Black than white.

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Looking for Romance in Romance, Arkansas

When posed with the question of an Arkansas-related blog post topic for Valentine’s Day, the rural community of Romance in White County came to mind. As you may know, the town of Romance gets quite a bit of attention during the Valentine month of February, with the local post office being the hot spot.

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Are There Any Confederate Monuments in Cinema?

Even long after its conclusion, the Civil War has remained a central theme in discussions surrounding the politics of remembrance, with its familiar tropes persisting to this day. While each period has seen its own debate over the legacy of the Civil War, the issue took on unprecedented prominence in 2019 amidst the wave of Black Lives Matter protests.

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Upcoming Black Family Expo: Save the Date! 2/17/24

In the fall of 2022, CALS community liaison Jessica McDaniel and community outreach archivist Danielle Afsordeh met to discuss McDaniel’s vision for a Black Family Expo. The idea for the expo came from McDaniel’s own family history. Her grandmother’s butter churn was proudly displayed in her mother’s home, as a reminder of her family’s history in the South and the legacy of her ancestors.

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Art Happenings at the Roberts Library and Beyond

Throughout the Central Arkansas Library System, you’ll see art nearly everywhere you look: in galleries, on the walls, and in progress. CALS offers exhibition galleries in the Roberts Library and elsewhere. It also actively collects and exhibits works by artists working and living in Arkansas and has a permanent collection of art that it displays throughout the buildings and grounds of its various libraries.

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Embracing the Random

I believe that it’s important to add a bit of randomness to one’s life. We can be too often confined to our narrow tastes, especially in these days when unseen algorithms dictate much of what we see online or even experience in the real world. Preserving a bit of randomness is a survival technique for the mind and soul.

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Shining a Light on Arkansas’s Jewish History for Hanukkah

As Jewish families in Arkansas illuminate their menorahs during the Hanukkah season, the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies at the CALS Roberts Library would like to shine our own light on the archival collections illustrating the enduring traditions of the state’s Jewish community.

Hanukkah, also known as the Festival of Lights, carries deep significance in Jewish tradition.

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Butler Banner Archive

The Butler Banner archives between 1999-2018 are available in PDF format only. The Butler Banner was our print newsletter.

> Check out the back issues


We allow certain outlets to reprint our copyrighted Butler Banner or CALS Roberts Library blog posts with express permission. To seek permission, please email Glenn Whaley at