News Release| California Library Association; Cal State L.A.

November 21, 2011

Cal State L.A. librarian honored for his courageous fight against censorship

Song receives Zoia Horn Intellectual Freedom Award

Los Angeles, CA – Recognized for his devotion to librarianship and dedication to resisting censorship, Cal State L.A.’s Yongyi Song (El Monte resident) was recently presented the California Library Association’s (CLA) 2011 Zoia Horn Intellectual Freedom Award.

Song—a technical services librarian at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Library on the CSULA campus—received the award at the CLA gala ceremony on Nov. 11 in the Pasadena Public Library.

In a letter to Song, CLA’s President Paymaneh Maghsoudi wrote: ”Your courageous fight against censorship in publishing The Cultural Revolution Database and your subsequent projects have earned the esteem of your California library colleagues.” 

A native of Shanghai, Song is well-known within the academic community of China studies. He has long devoted himself to preserving the true history of China’s Cultural Revolution and combating government censorship through myriad publications, including bibliographies and source books. Song was twice jailed by the Chinese authorities—once during the Cultural Revolution for organizing an underground reading club, and again in 1999, for collecting primary sources on the revolution.

Among his many books and articles, Song is a coauthor with other librarians of several books and monographs, The Cultural Revolution: A Bibliography, 1966-1996 (Harvard-Yenching Library, 1998), Chinese Cultural Revolution Database and Chinese Anti-Rightist Campaign Database online and CD-ROMs (Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2002-2010), and The Historical Dictionary of Chinese Cultural Revolution (Scarecrow, 2006).

His accolades include The 21st Century Librarian National Award by Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies in 2004, and the Paul Howard Award for Courage by the American Library Association in 2005.

Song received a master’s degree in library and information science from Indiana University at Bloomington in 1995, a master’s degree in Oriental literature from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1992, and a bachelor’s degree from Shanghai Institute of Education in 1981.

The Zoia Horn Intellectual Freedom Award honors California people, groups and organizations that have made significant contributions to intellectual freedom.

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