I just finished reading Ali Smith’s book of short stories Public Library last night. The stories have nothing to do with libraries but between each story is a page or two of someone Smith knows who she got to tell her a story about going to the library. As you can imagine, there is lots of library love happening. And with the barrage of fake news these days libraries are even more important because libraries provide trusted sources of information and librarians are expert in information literacy. If you are ever in doubt about a source, ask a librarian! They will help you figure out if it is a fact, post-fact, truth, truthy, or completely made up. Librarians and libraries are amazing and do good work for a better democracy. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a librarian! Others say great things too:
Because libraries have always been a part of any civilization they are not negotiable. They are part of our inheritance. (Pat Hunter)
You borrowed it, you read it, you brought it back and chose something else, and someone else read whatever you read after and before you. It was communal. That’s what public library means: something communal.(Helen Clyne, Kate Atkinson’s daughter)
I don’t know about you, but I have moved a few times in my life and whenever and wherever I have moved one of the things I did within the first week of arrival was get a library card. My library card has always been an anchor for my life and the port from which my mind could sail to far away or unfamiliar places.
And just a blurb about fake news, I know you all are smart people, but I like sharing good stuff, so I am pointing you to an article on fake news the librarians at the University of Minnesota put together. And like the excellent librarians they are, they also included a short reading list.
Be kind, use your library and your check sources!