American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 27, No. 1, January

Ala President's Message
Defining the Public Interest in the Information Superhighway The centerpiece of my campaign for Equity on the Information Superhighway, an important step in advancing ALA Goal 2000, is a summit meeting titled "A Nation Connected: Defining the Public...
ALA's Touring Shows Spur Programs
DURING MIDWINTER, SAN ANTONIO PL HOSTS ONE OF 10 TRAVELING EXHIBITS ALA HAS DEVELOPED SINCE 1983 Among the many delights San Antonio offers to ALA Midwinter Meeting visitors is a vibrant and eclectic music scene. The San Antonio Public Library adds...
A "Private" Grievance against Dewey
ARCHIVAL LETTERS SHED LIGHT ON DEWEY'S SHADY REPUTATION WITH WOMEN COLLEAGUES The 1906 conference of the American Library Association at Naragansett Pier was well attended, as hundreds of librarians enjoyed the sunshine and sea breezes of the Rhode...
Censorship Roundup
Annie on the Shelf. Some two years after the Olathe, Kansas, school board ignored its own materials review policy and ordered high-school librarians systemwide to pull Nancy Garden's gay-positive novel Annie on My Mind, a federal district court has...
Chicago PL Takes Heat for Calendar's Errors
Even its harshest critic will admit that the Chicago Public Library's first attempt at a historical calendar is an attractive and graphically appealing effort, which, according to CPL Commissioner Mary Dempsey, is enjoying "booming" sales. However,...
Community Networks: New Frontier, Old Values
I knew it was time to write about libraries and community networks when, sitting in a meeting for Huron Valley Community Network, an information system just coming online in Ann Arbor, Michigan, I realized that half the folks in the room were librarians....
Congressional Hearing Examines LC Security Flaws
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington defended the library's security measures at a Nov. 29 Congressional hearing focusing on theft and mutilation of books in its collections (AL, Oct. 1995, p. 868-869). However, the library's inspector general...
Dewey Declassified: A Revelatory Look at the "Irrepressible Reformer"
AFTER CREATING HIS DECIMAL CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM AND FOUNDING ALA, MELVIL DEWEY PUT HIS DECIDEDLY BUSINESSLIKE SPIN ON LIBRARY EDUCATION By 1889, Melvil Dewey had already left a trail of innovative reform, business debts, and antagonized enemies....
Don't Let the Internet Backfire
Among the categories of Internet users defined by Carla List in her article "Sanctifying the Internet" (Nov., p. 1019-1022), I am not exactly a "Luddite", but I'm certainly not a "tech-head"; and if I surf, I do not "hang-ten" like the pros who have...
Dumb and Dumber: Part 3
There is no end in sight to the letters I've been receiving from reference librarians responding to the survey in my July/August column (p. 736), and there's also no end in sight to the accounts of weird, offbeat, and just plain dumb reference experiences...
Equity Petition to Rally Support
Equity on the Information Super-highway Information is the currency of democracy. Our jobs, education, health and self-governance depend on it. Just as libraries have always provided books and other information resources for all people regardless...
Facetiae
Adieu to Dui After nearly 150 years of an active existence, it is, at last, time that poor old Melville (sorry, Melvil) Dewey (sorry, Dui) is laid to rest. While a hardy band of Dui-ites and spelling reformers hope that he may survive well into...
Five Great Roles for Libraries and Librarians within the Nii
On-ramp of first resort: Network services are continually expanding and putting more demands on the infrastructure. Therefore, there will always be advanced services that will require resources most people do not have, either because they are not available...
How Do Libraries Change Lives? Let Us Count the Ways!
ALA'S HARDY "LIBRARIES CHANGE LIVES" THEME INSPIRES ANOTHER ROUND OF HEARTFELT GRATITUDE FROM LIBRARY USERS Definition of the impossible: attempting to include in this small space the thousands of ways libraries have changed people's lives. But...
Is There an Andrew Carnegie in the House?
WITH $6 MILLION COLLECTED IN NINE MONTHS, THE FUND FOR AMERICA'S LIBRARIES LOOKS AHEAD TO THE YEAR 2000 Last month, the Library of Congress postponed a major show of its holdings from the archives of Sigmund Freud (see story, p. 22). According to...
LC Delays Controversial Freud Exhibition
Blaming budgetary problems, the Library of Congress has postponed a major exhibition of its holdings from the archives of Sigmund Freud, originally scheduled for this December. However, the planned exhibition had been attacked by critics of Freudian...
"My Dear Aunties." Recollections of Mr. Dewey's School
RECENTLY DISCOVERED LETTERS REVEAL A STUDENT'S EXPERIENCES AT THE NEW YORK STATE LIBRARY SCHOOL "We went to the reception at Mr. Dewey's last night. Had a very pleasant time. All the library school and staff were invited and there was a houseful....
On My Mind
What's Wrong with "Family Friendly Libraries"? In recent years the library community has come under increasing scrutiny and criticism, being described as advocates of feminism, homosexuality, pornography, and a host of other "anti-family" social...
Ruling Favors Whistle-Blower: Truman Library to Appeal
Officials at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) say they will appeal an administrative law judge's ruling that the library erred when it transferred and denied a promotion to Carol Briley, an archivist at the Harry S. Truman Library...
Seminar at LC Examines Libraries' Transformation
More than 100 public library directors, library educators, and foundation representatives met at the Library of Congress Dec. 8 to come to a conclusion most of them had already reached: The shift of the public library from a print-based service to...
Seven and Patron Confidentiality
The film Seven is a nightmare urban-scape of Dostoevskian proportion. The dreary world pictured in this film is a vale of tears beyond redemption. We are reminded again that the city is, after all, an invention of the Biblical figure, Cain. The serial...
Superhighway Speed Limit Abolished; Information Policy Swerves
Fred W. Weingarten, senior policy advisor at ALA Washington Office, offers a traffic report Change in the underlying technologies that manipulate, communicate, present, and store information will accelerate into the foreseeable future, say the scientists...
Technically Speaking
OCLC Watch From preservation to access. OCLC's Preservation Resources division now offers digital scanning of microfilm, the indexing of scanned images, and the distribution of those indexed and digitized images in a variety of electronic media,...
The Dewey Management Style
Between 1889 and 1899, Dewey served as regents' secretary for the University of the State of New York, which most people would have considered a full-time job. But Dewey also had responsibilities as state librarian and director of the New York State...
Windfall to NYPL for Reading Room Rehab
An unidentified benefactor has committed $15 million to the New York Public Library, earmarked for the complete renovation of the Main Reading Room of the Center for the Humanities. It is the largest gift ever made to the library for a single purpose....