Thus Said; "A Short History of Literacy Could Go like This: Gutenberg, King James, Libraries, Oprah.". (Opinion)

American Libraries, June-July 2002 | Go to article overview

Thus Said; "A Short History of Literacy Could Go like This: Gutenberg, King James, Libraries, Oprah.". (Opinion)


"You cannot just walk cold into a library and expect to emerge fully literate. There are so many books, you need a guide to tell you what to read." Ed Budz, administrator of New York City's Thalia movie theater, explaining the need for revival houses to educate film audiences, New York Times, April 13.

"After a long day at the library, the last thing Margaret needed to unwind with was a good book. Happily, Margaret has discovered a much more appealing way to ease the stresses of everyday life. Her new Natural Contours personal vibrators." Ad copy, Bust Magazine, Spring 2002, featuring a smiling librarian in glasses holding a book.

"I said 'Li-brary.' I said it very lightly. The 'r' really got lost. We have rerecorded it. I tend to be real picky about that stuff, but I admit I could've done better on that one." Anonymous man who records the announcements for the Chicago Transit Authority el trains, explaining the infamous Harold Washington 'Liberry' stop, Chicago Tribune, April 24.

"Seriously flawed filters, like incompetent librarians, should not be used to make content decisions unless libraries are able to carefully oversee and train or customize them." Attorney Mark S. Nadel, letter to the editor, New York Times, April 18.

"It's the best library. I use it all the time. I'm going to give them a check for $60 tomorrow." Oconomowoc (Wis.) Mayor-elect Gary Kohlenberg, after being exposed for possessing an illegal Milwaukee Public Library card, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, April 15.

"It's almost like librarian porn, where the smart reserved woman turns out to be a wild sex beast. And at the end of the day, she really just wants to be tied up and humiliated." Critic Jeff Stark, reviewing The Piano Teacher, a new French film starring Isabelle Huppert, Salon.com, April 9.

"When it comes to anticipating future tastes, I put my faith not just in libraries, companies, and government, but in these freelance selectors and preservers too. This volunteer corps needs only encouragement and good technical advice... to create invaluable resources for generations to come. …

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