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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"

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Intro Bridget (and some early reactions to the readings)

Hello everyone. I’m Bridget. I just graduated from the Master’s program at UW-SLIS. I work at the CCBC and WPT. My main areas of interest are youth services and literature for young people. I’m interested in looking at how young people develop relationships with literature.

During my one week of doing readings for this class I’m pretty sure that I’m not going to go into historical research (but I’ll give it another week just in case). I found the readings fascinating, but I feel like historical research is like pulling a string out of a piece of cloth, focusing in on it, and drawing conclusions. But what about the rest of the string in the cloth? Your view is incomplete. I realize that it’s impossible to look at history in a holistic sort of way because there are too many things that influence each other and that you can never look at all of them at once, so this one string research is important, but this way of looking at the world drives me crazy.

Fain’s article criticizes Harris and Garrison for not having their arguments carefully enough framed. Harris agrees and goes on to focus his comments with an interpretive framework. But all he’s really doing is telling us just what string he pulled and why he pulled it. Right? What about the bigger picture?

So I guess my answer to KT’s question is that I don’t think that you can look at librarianship in a gender neutral way. I would say that gender influences the whole of librarianship – it’s one of the brighter strings in the cloth.


Blogger Jom said...

For Fain's article, I think that as Garrison mentioned library cannot force people to come and use its offering, then can the development of library such as integrated facilities, technology, equipment, and environment? Since people need to get to information of their needs, and so they will look, or possibly forced, to learn how to use tools and make use of the provided environment. In my opinion, this is linked to “people’s right to know”, and so how could libraries and librarians support and encourage users to realize, recognize, manage, and become skillful to make use of their rights to know and the sources of information?

5:56 PM  

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