Montclair State Shield

July 1, 2020

Dear Readers:

As of today, I have retired from Montclair State University, and new content for The Creative Research Center is suspended until further notice.

However, and this is a big “however,” after a more than a decade of virtual dedication to the dynamic imagination of the University community and beyond, the riches of The Creative Research Center as an institution remain open and accessible to all.

In addition to the digital archive, by Deed of Gift, the complete paper & notebook-based analog record of The Creative Research Center will be housed in perpetuity in the Harry A. Sprague Library Archives and Special Collections on the MSU campus.

And so: To new arrivals at this Web site, I urge you to carry forward! Range and “click” widely here to your heart’s content. Your curiosity and intrigue will be well-satisfied.

To the CRC’s multitude of old friends, students, faculty, neighbors, & collaborators – thanks for the essays, blogs, pictures, and ideas. You are welcome back any time.

Farewell thanks to Dean Daniel Gurskis and his administrative colleagues, who supported The Creative Research Center so generously. And last, but certainly not least, my nostalgic gratitude to MSU College of the Arts Emeritus Dean Geoffrey Newman, who offered me this “box to think outside of,” long ago, with a handshake and a knowing smile.

Neil Baldwin, PhD.
Founding Director

…today there is promise alongside the pain in our streets, in the United States and around the world. The fire this time is both a reckoning and an awakening, a global voice united in protesting the crippling ignorance and culpable innocence that James Baldwin decried [in his 1963 essay collection]. Because engagement with history is essential to our freedom, it is a propitious time to reflect upon the fundamental work of our communities: libraries, archives, museums, and galleries, the composite of memory institutions in service to the public good. We are conversant and critical with the past as a professional mandate, and insist on its preservation, documentation, contextualization, discovery, and reuse both to inform the present and help envision a more charitable future.

A Disquieting Innocence, by Charles J. Henry, PhD, President, Council on Library and Information Resources, June, 2020.

Digital platforms are worthless without content. They’re shiny sacks with bells and whistles, but without content, they’re empty sacks. It is not about pixels versus print. It is not about how you’re reading. It is about what you’re reading.

Maureen Dowd, The New York Times, March 10, 2013

University researchers are truly scholars without borders; ideas do not wear school colors.

Claudia Goldin, author, with Lawrence F. Katz, The Race Between Education and Technology (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008)

The CRC continues to be energized by curatorial, editorial, and outreach intentions to break down the so-called “silos” among academic colleges, departments, and programs. Outside our familiar academic culture lies a vast and endangered world. Daily occurrences on the big stages of our over-stressed society and natural environment effect – in ways writ large and small – the way men and women in the post-9/11 millennial generation live their lives.

About the Center