ERIAC launches the Barvalipe Digital Library of Critical Romani Scholarship

On Wednesday, December 8 2021, the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC), in the frame of the Barvalipe Roma Online University, has launched the Library Digital Library of Critical Romani Scholarship.

A critical turn in Romani Studies, requires a process of decolonization and an evaluative reframing of our current bibliographies. The Barvalipe Digital Library of Critical Romani Scholarship addresses, in part, a need for a rigorous, scholarly resource that collects reliable academic literature and research about the Roma and other related communities, developed from the critical perspectives of Romani scholars. 

This selected collection is organised into several, contiguous, broad thematic sections that reflect particular avenues of current research, primarily (though not exclusively), led by Roma and other Romani scholars, namely: Romani Histories and Herstories, Romani Identity Politics, Romani Movements and Political Activism; Romani Feminist Thought and Activism; the Romani LGBTI Movement, Knowledge Production, Antigypsyism – Anti Romani racism and racialization; Romani Cultures and Narratives; Art History; Language and Linguistics; Romani Children. 

This curated selection draws together some of the seminal pieces from peer–reviewed, academic publications by Romani researchers and scholars, adopting an orientation and positionality that reflects their identity as Roma, which begins to establish a foundational bedrock of a library of Critical Romani Studies. By collecting op-eds, articles, research findings, book chapters, reports and more, in one digital space, the Library makes Roma and Romani knowledge-production more widely accessible, to Romani and non-Romani audiences

The Library is meant to be a ‘living archive’ and not a fixed canon, nor is it a ‘museum artefact’ capturing a ‘snapshot’ of Romani knowledge production at one particular instance in the early 21st century. In this initial phase, the Curators of the Library have sought to gather together a collection of texts, from a variety of perspectives and intellectual or theoretical approaches that will serve as an initial point of reference, for an ever-expanding digital resource, much as a ‘patrin’ or ‘patteran’ was used  by Romani people in the past indicating directions for late arrivals as to where the other waggons had moved on. To that end, the Curators welcome suggestions for academic additions to the Digital Library. 

It is envisaged by the Curators that, over time, the collection will expand to provide a significant educational reference resource. This will, it is to be hoped, actively promote further rigorous and scholarly production from Romani academics and researchers, sometimes working in collaboration with their non–Roma partners and colleagues. The breadth of the collection, in content and subject matter, is likewise intended to extend into additional areas, such as Biography, Literature, Poetry and Drama, Graphic Novels and Animation, Religiosity, and other topics and fields of study. As such, the Digital Library has a potential to reach the widest possible communities, and represent them/us, through the lens of Romani knowledge production, in ways that are both new and intrinsic, inseparable from our own ‘voices’, rather than as the echoes distantly ‘captured’ by others.

The Barvalipe Digital Library of the Critical Romani Scholarship has been curated by: Dr. Maria BogdanDr. Ioanida CostacheDr. Dezso MateDr. Adrian R. MarshDr. Anna Mirga-Kruszelnicka.


Currently, the collection of the Digital Library includes around 100 items! Access them here: