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"
It seems to me that analysis of the causes of civic disengagement should be the most powerful part of this book, however, I find it very insufficient and unsatisfactory. Putman does analyze a lot of candidate factors, from TV to race, from money to marriage; however, the factors that are counted as causal factors, especially the weight of each factors seem more like guesses than valid conclusions. For example, of course the generation change is a powerful factor, but why is there such dramatic change between generations? The change itself does not reveal the underlying reasons to the question of civil disengagement.