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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"

Friday, September 16, 2005

Random Thoughts

p. 60: "If the library profession stood slightly in advance of the educational bureacracy in its support of reform, it was chiefly because the library, unlike the school, was relatively untrammelled by tradition, was peculiarly sensitive to popular opinion, and was freer to evolve as conditions warranted." I had trouble with the "untrammelled by tradition" part; was not the issue of clinging to tradition one of the main points of some of her arguments?

p. 140: It's it interesting the it was Dewey himself who, while at Albany, "reduced the already meager clerical salaries by 25 percent, and hired more employees with the savings." Did he start a trend (no, salaries already were low), but perhaps it was Dewey's influence over the professions that contributed to the continuing problems of low wages and troubles with professionalism.

I would like very much to read the book on librarianship in the West (I forget the title). I am so tired of reading about New England. As a History major in college, the whole history of the United States always seemed to be taught from the New England experience.

Garrison makes generalized statements about the present, but offers no sources or supporting arguments; for example: p. 194: Beccause sexist attitudes still prevail in this society..."

pp. 89-90: "the increasing predominance of women had the effect of causing the library to become more and more demand-oriended, since most librarians did not feel strang enough either as individuals, or as professionals, to assert themselves in the face of public demands."
Is this a claim without supporting evidence?
Also, p. 92: "Although their subservience to thier clientele's wishes was strengthen by the feminization of librarianship, their passivity was also a result of the library's peculiar position as a tax-suppoted institution."
Something just doesn't seem right here.

p. 215: "the Jewish youngsters, whose cultural heritage prepared them to cherish books and learning." Isn't this a stereotype, without sources to back up her claim?

How much authority does Garrison have to analyze and draw conclusions on Dewy's psychological make-up?

Isn't it interesting that intellectualism became equated with stagnation, which was equated with the old order?

p. 185: Professional women stressed the social value of their work. They rarely described thier right to work as an individual need for human expression and happiness."
Did Garrison do a thorought check of primary sources to back up this claim?

Language: I found it troubling the way Garrison always used the term "spinster" with its negative connotations. Am I being overly PC?



Blogger k8 said...

The Book you are looking for is Joanne Passet's Cultural Crusaders

8:28 AM  

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