Parents in Mahwah, NJ are expressing distress that the school district has, in their view, reduced student access to books in the school libraries.
Is it unethical to charge library fines? The current landscape in public and other libraries shows that there’s no one way to handle it, but trends are moving in favor of patrons.
With the major success of science fiction and fantasy films based on novels recently including The Hunger Games (not published by Tor) and Ender’s Game (published by Tor), I have long thought that science fiction and fantasy was a great “gate way” genre for reluctant teen readers in particular. Therefore, as a librarian and a buyer of Tor’s books myself I would add my voice to those asking Tor and Macmillan to reconsider this embargo.
A federal district court ruling earlier this month which held that there is no clearly established constitutional right to literacy in the United States has reminded me that the various pieces of my background are sometimes in conflict with one another.
People need information at all points in their lives, something librarians have a keen understanding of. But my professional role as a librarian in facilitating the intellectual freedom in situational circumstances such as domestic violence was not an immediate and obvious connection.
BISAC headings have made their way into public and school libraries as well. A 2013 Knowledge Quest issue on the “Dewey Debate” provides a good intro to the “Dewey or don’t we” debate in school libraries, and many public libraries have made news for their move toward the “bookstore model,” what is often called a more patron-friendly approach than the Dewey Decimal System.
I think the recent headlines regarding a lack of knowledge about the Holocaust just serve to reinforce how important it is to continue to allow access to and discussion of Mein Kampf. Only by remembering what happened and by studying Hitler’s mindset and psychology can we understand – as much as is possible – what happened and thereby try to prevent it from happening again. And any consideration of banning Mein Kampf should also consider the fact that book banning (and burning) was an early part of Hitler’s reign, too.
When I read Barbara Dee’s middle-grade novel Star-Crossed—a story about Mattie, an eighth-grade girl who plays Romeo opposite her crush, the talented and beautiful Gemma, and how Mattie comes to terms with this crush and expressing it—I cried.
Do you like having equitable and open access to whatever you want to view online? Call your congressperson. Email. Write. Send a smoke signal. Let them know you support the free exchange of ideas and information. Let them know that you support intellectual freedom. Let them know that you support net neutrality.
How can archival repositories assist the repatriation movement to return cultural expressions, knowledge and heritage to source communities while maximizing the intellectual freedoms of our patrons? Guest blogger Ryan S. Flahive summarizes thoughts on how archives can promote a culturally responsive approach to archives management through policy-making.