Institutional Identity and the Problem of the Presidential Library

January 30, 2007

From a blog associated with Sojourner, a thoughtful forum for progressive Christians.  Jumfer reflects on the package, but draws no distinction between the library and institute.

Institutional Identity and the Problem of the Presidential Library
Tim Kumfer
Always New Depths
January 30, 2007

By now you’ve probably heard of the debate ensuing down there in Dallas. Southern Methodist University is the proposed site for the George W. Bush Presidential Library. The site would host a museum, the administration’s archives, and a public policy institute. The initial announcement in the fall garnered protest from faculty members, students, alumni, and United Methodist clergy and church members. The University is moving forward with its negotiations with the President’s site selection committee, and it is expected to formally accept soon. The question raised here is, should SMU accept, and why?

Continued here.

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Times and Chronicle are Forgainst the Bush Library

January 30, 2007

This from the blog of the Dallas Observer, our independent weekly.  Funny if a bit snarky — that’s pretty much their style — and does a nice job with questions of secrecy and continued Bush control over access to documents. 

Times and Chronicle are Forgainst the Bush Library
Robert Wilonsky
Unfair Park–The Dallas Observer Blog
January 29, 2007

Two editorials over the weekend – one in The New York Times, another in the Houston Chronicle – suggest, in short, that S.M.U. oughta be happy with that George W. Bush Library-Think Tank-Pet Store-Juice Bar proposed for the Hilltop, but only if Dubya stops being so, like, secretive. Yup – good luck with all that.

Continued here.


SMU Newspaper Summarizes Current Debate, Media Coverage

January 30, 2007

Most of us at SMU are aware of how much our school is in the spotlight these days. Several senior colleagues have told me that to their knowledge SMU has never been the subject of this kind of national attention. Many think that we are benefitting tremendously from it, in large part because of the vigorous debate about the library and institute. Perhaps we’ve already raised our profile because of becoming the finalist for the library and institute — and because there have been so many doubts and concerns raised.

Bush library debate focuses spotlight on SMU
Mark Norris
SMU Daily Campus
January 30, 2007

Three faculty meetings, two petitions and numerous editorials later, the drama that is the Bush Library complex continues to gain a wider audience in the United States and worldwide.

The debate has shone a bright, and sometimes harsh, spotlight on the Hilltop.

Media inquiries about the Bush Library have flooded SMU’s News and Communications office. According to its media monitoring service, 329 articles and television segments have been done on SMU’s bid for the complex since the Dec. 21 announcement that the school was entering into exclusive negotiations with the library committee.

Last week, ABC’s “World News with Charles Gibson” had a story on the debate in addition to other coverage on CNN and MSNBC. The story has received column space in the Washington Post and the New York Times, both of which have sent reporters to cover the faculty meetings along with reporters from The Associated Press and the Dallas Morning News.

The story has gone international in the past week with articles in the United Kingdom’s The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph of London and a German newspaper. The debate was also featured on “Canada A.M.,” that country’s equivalent of “Good Morning America.”

Continued here.