American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 38, No. 10, November

Advancing Advocacy: ALA's Newest Office Is the Next Big Step
On September 4, ALA established the new Office for Library Advocacy (OLA). We all know that advocacy has been the number one member priority for more than a decade. But what will the new office do? How will it fit in with all the other advocacy efforts...
A Sense of Elsewhere: The President of Carnegie Corporation of New York Pays Tribute to the Power of Libraries as Launching Pads for the Imagination
The institution that is most representative of our open society is the library. We must, therefore, acknowledge that libraries are indispensable, no matter what form they take. Libraries have and always will contain our nation's heritage, the heritage...
Booting Up Book Lovers: Animated E-Books Captivate Emerging Readers
"My book should smell of pines and resound with the hum of insects." --Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Self-Reliance" (1841) Admittedly, Emerson's desire for a realistic earthiness in books was never intended as a harbinger of interactive texts. Still, given...
Bush Overruled on Presidential Records
A federal judge October 1 invalidated part of President Bush's Executive Order 13233, which gives former presidents, their heirs, and former vice presidents the right to review executive records indefinitely before they are made public under the Freedom...
But Is It Librarianship? There's More to Free Internet Access Than Meets the Eye
What do you do when you're in a new or unfamiliar city with an hour or so to kill? Hit a coffee house? Walk through an inviting park? A little shopping? C'mon. We all do it, and it's nothing to be ashamed of. We go to the library. It's a professional...
Chicago Tax Hike Would Support Libraries
On October 10, Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley proposed a $108-million property tax increase--among the largest in city history--that would augment funding for library operations and possibly allow the construction of new facilities. The 15% hike...
Circle of Community: The Freezing over Moon Month or Gashkadino-Giizis
If there is a time to dust off and review the Library Bill of Rights, it is now. Post it on your wall near the circulation desk, provide a copy on your website, or add it to your course syllabi. Review Article V: "A person's right to use a library...
Do-It-Yourself Censors Strike
A pair of high-profile censorship-by-check-out cases marked the weeks leading up to this year's Banned Books Week, September 29-October 6. See page 15 for more about the event. A "Cautionary Tale" of Oral Sex in Alabama Brookwood (Ala.) High...
English Only Is English Lonely
What would make children who grew up in a home where English was not the first language turn right around and become English majors in college? American Libraries Senior Editor Beverly Goldberg and I used to discuss that question when we learned that...
English Spoken Here: By Creating Bilingual Collections, Librarians Are Contributing to a Divided America
In light of the legal and illegal immigration waves of the last 20 years, libraries today face a number of controversies: Questions are swirling about language and library books, bilingual library websites, and English classes for immigrants--largely...
Federal Prisons to Return Religious Books
Following an outcry from civil libertarians and religious groups, the Federal Bureau of Prisons has authorized the return to chapel libraries of all appropriate religious materials that it had ordered removed as part of its new Standardized Chapel...
From a Land of Books: The Son of Lebanese Immigrants Looks Back at the Way His Parents Infused Their Children with a Critical Love for the Written Word
It would be an overstatement to say that my parents' four children grew up in a home of wall-to-wall books. There were bookcases in the living room, the pantry, and all the bedrooms, but not the kitchen and dining room, where their contents were regularly...
Global Reach
SPAIN 1 Two of a dozen rare maps stolen from Spain's national library in Madrid in August (AL, Oct., p. 35) have apparently been located by police. The FBI found a map from the 1508 edition of Ptolemy's Geographia in the possession of an unnamed...
Go Global, Library Vendor: Does Financial Sustainability Lie in Fresh Markets?
In the past, I have tended to shy away from vendors operating outside of North America or the happenings at an international library unless one of them did something of significant interest to the primary readers of ALA's flagship magazine. Truth be...
How the World Sees Us
"Library administrators often are left scrounging for funding as tax dollars are spent on law enforcement, levees, and other important needs. That's unfortunate, because some of the most professional, visionary, and caring people are working at libraries."...
Laying Down the Law: ALA's Ethics Codes; Are Enforceable Rules Needed for Information Professionals?
Ethics matters because it allows us to function in a humane and equitable manner without the control of a caustic or demagogic legal system. But apparently it does not matter very much to librarians. --Robert Hauptman, Ethics and Librarianship (2002)...
LITA Forum: Technology with Altitude
Technology with Altitude" was the theme of the 10th national forum of ALA's Library and Information Technology Association, held October 4-7 in Denver, the Mile-High City. But it could just as easily have been "Only Connect." The forum's deliberately...
National Book Festival Draws Huge Crowd despite Protest
More than 120,000 Washington, D.C.--area residents gathered on a parched and dusty National Mall September 29 for the 7th Annual National Book Festival sponsored by the Library of Congress and hosted by First Lady Laura Bush. While the day-long...
Rebuilding Afghanistan ... One Book at a Time: Though They Lack Some of the Most Basic Resources, Libraries Play a Key Role in Reviving This War-Depleted Nation
On the streets of Kabul today, you won't find a single newspaper blowing sown the street. In this land of endless sorrows, printed items are a luxury. newspapers provide the cheapest installments of written information but still cost about twice as...
Rusa
RESOURCES BOOST SERVICE The Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) helps information professionals by providing the needed resources to deliver the best service. A sampling of the ways RUSA can help you: READERS' ADVISORY This fall,...
Shifting Gears: Academic and Public and School and Special-Oh My!
Many librarians seem to settle comfortably into one type of library and remain there, but I have met several who have moved from one variety to another. A few librarians I know have even hit for the cycle: They've worked for school, public, special...
Spanish Spoken Here: Eliminating Spanish-Language Fiction Undermines the Validity of Public Libraries
An age-old library science principle is to build a public library collection in proportion to the needs and attributes of the community served. With this is mind, ask youself, "Does deliberately denying a Latino community access to Spanish-language...
The Reagan Revolution: Just What Did Trickle Down to Libraries?
Over the past year I have been reviewing the first 100 years of American Libraries. This reassessment has fallen into a neat logical order. It's been fun to see how the library profession has reacted to the events and trends of each decade since 1907....
Tickle Me Reference: "Elmo's World" and the Changes in Our Research Environment
Every weekday morning, a furry red monster appears on my television screen and, after a bit of singing and dancing, he embarks on a research project. First stop, he visits the library, right? Well, no. Actually, he never goes to the library, and he...
What It Means to Be Born Digital
I know that people born after 1980 are very different from those of us who were born earlier," North Suburban (Ill.) Library System Director Sarah Long wrote in the September 23 Illinois Daily Herald. "These less-than-30-year-olds were born digital....
Who Moved My E-Mail? Sharing What We Know through Blogs and Wikis
How many times have you searched in vain for an e-mail that you thought you'd saved and is now critical to your current project? How many times has an employee left a library's employ, taking all of his or her knowledge along and leaving a successor...