TCDSU to engage with Senior Dean on process of renaming the Berkeley Library

TCDSU President Gabi Fullam said the union will work to “devise an evidence-based transparent process which engages with stakeholders”

Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) has said that it will engage with the College’s Senior Dean on the process of renaming the Berkeley Library at next month’s meeting of the College Board.

In a statement issued by TCDSU President Gabi Fullam, the union acknowledged that it had received an update from the Provost’s Office on the issue.

“The Provost has acknowledged that a number of legacy issues have been identified through the work of the Trinity Colonial Legacy Group, including but not limited to The X Library, which must be addressed.”

Fullam confirmed that TCDSU will “work in direct collaboration” with the Senior Dean to “devise an evidence-based transparent process which engages with stakeholders” ahead of the College Board’s October meeting, at which it will present its case for the renaming of the Library.

TCDSU has said that it hopes to carry through the renaming process this semester, and has pledged its willingness to cooperate with College authorities on the matter, wanting “the community to reflectively and meaningfully engage with historic atrocities to create a justice-oriented present”.

In a Tweet, the president added that students “will and always have been pivotal to progress within Colleges”.

The Library is presently named after George Berkeley, an eighteenth century Church of Ireland Bishop, mathematician and philosopher who owned several enslaved Africans in the United States.

Last month, TCDSU called for the immediate renaming of the Berkeley Library after it was mandated by Council to do so earlier this year. The union now refers to the Library as “the X Library” in all its communications, and called on Trinity to make a “firm commitment” to renaming the library before September 30.

A petition was also launched by Trinity Ógra Shinn Féin to rename the Library after revolutionary leader Wolfe Tone, and has reached over 220 signatures.

Evan Skidmore O’Reilly

Evan Skidmore O'Reilly is a Deputy News Editor for the 69th volume of Trinity News, and a third year BESS student.