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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"

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Some thoughts for Friday Oct 21

When and how can we come up with unity and share in a community? I am wondering in what ways can library outreach programs can bring sub-communities together and form one united community which in fact, is a meta one. To me, as I mentioned before, the look at two dimensions is complicated and so I am thinking about how library can use its venue and inventory as the first outreach to community before making further moves – reaching out and bringing in or bringing in and reaching out.

I find the value of existence very fascinating and important for institutions especially service ones. Being exist and being known exist are different, and the latter can be influencial to a group. It can impact perceptions, understanding, behaviors, collaboration, and many important things in a community. This is, to me, has important meanings to both sides of the story - users’ existence and library’s existence. I am wondering if the representation of commonality within and between groups communicated and delivered though outreaches and/or media interplays with the issues of unity and diversity. How much more can the relationship between the existence, goals, and process of outreach programs contribution to the field? In what way does this have to do with “gatekeeping”, and how do gatekeepers play roles? I am thinking two sides again - library’s gatekeepers and communities’. Also, I find that ideas embedded in outreach programs are not framed only at library “outreach”, but also to serve as a mechanism on issues such as social controls, Americanizations, domestic reforms, social changes, social problems, etc.

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