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LIS 950: Libraries and community

The purpose of this seminar is to explore an important topic in library and information studies in depth — in all its intertwined historical, cultural, philosophical, and political aspects — through a graduate reading/discussion seminar. The topic varies each time the course is taught; this time around, we will focus on "libraries and community"

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Gendered Histories

In Harris' response to Fain, he argues that garrison's project is one that works to "gain an understanding of a problem extending far beyond librarianship," one of the intersections between gender and historical narratives, while his project is to "understand library development" and to create a "philosophy of library service" (107).

Is Harris suggesting that his project somehow lies outside of gender - that it is in some way neutral? If so, I know that I question his understanding of the gendered implications (which to me seem fairly explicit) in his argument about the authoritarian, patriarchal power of early promoters of public libraries.

I know, that was more of a statement than a question, but I am interested in what y'all think about the issue.


Blogger Awa said...

I think it's really hard to say that by saying "gain an understanding of a problem extending far beyond librarianship", Harris just meant the gender issue in library development. I think he might be trying to say that Garrison's goal is to understand "the condition and role of women in Americen life,"(P107) which makes their "motives" and "framework" different.

Actually I feel it very hard to truly understand their differences without reading Garrison's article. Upon reading Fain's and Harris', I thought I had got Garrison's main idea. However, after reading Garrison's response and the Introduction of Apostles of Culture, I think that she was, to a certain degree, "misunderstood". But still, I am not sure whether Harris was correct in understanding and evaluating Garrison's work.

9:45 PM  

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