Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Library Bucket List: On loving all libraries by Jen Li


Library Bucket List: On loving all libraries


Library Bucket List: On loving all libraries
by Jen Li, INALJ Contributor
I have a ‘library bucket list’. Although my PhD research focuses on three case study libraries in Sydney, my reading and travels have taken me beyond Sydney and those three libraries. I have a mental list of libraries that I would like to visit one day, libraries that I would love to return to, and whenever I’m in a new city I will visit their libraries and discover ones that I didn’t realise I wanted to visit but am glad that I found them. The bucket list is developed through hours upon hours of reading books and articles about libraries, following libraries and librarians on Twitter, and reading websites like BookRiot on an almost daily basis. There are many lists out there that proclaim the ‘Most Beautiful Libraries in the World’ or ‘Libraries You Should Visit Before You Die’, and I like to read them for two reasons: to see how many libraries I can tick off and say, “Yes, I’ve been there!”, and to add new libraries to my list.

A note on these lists, however: these lists typically contain grand, beautiful libraries. There are palatial and majestic libraries out there in the world, libraries with marble floors and columns, and what seem like endless rows of bookshelves. You know the ones. They are spectacular libraries that intimidate. These are generally national libraries, or a city’s first or central library, or academic libraries. My bucket list contains these libraries, and I will never say no to an opportunity to visit them. But I also love the library that never makes it onto those lists; the humble neighbourhood library that perhaps isn’t as well funded, or is open as many hours as its users would like, or whose decor and furnishings might not have been updated for a number of years because its budgetary priorities lay elsewhere. Read more...

Library Bucket List: On loving all libraries


Library Bucket List: On loving all libraries
by Jen Li, INALJ Contributor
I have a ‘library bucket list’. Although my PhD research focuses on three case study libraries in Sydney, my reading and travels have taken me beyond Sydney and those three libraries. I have a mental list of libraries that I would like to visit one day, libraries that I would love to return to, and whenever I’m in a new city I will visit their libraries and discover ones that I didn’t realise I wanted to visit but am glad that I found them. The bucket list is developed through hours upon hours of reading books and articles about libraries, following libraries and librarians on Twitter, and reading websites like BookRiot on an almost daily basis. There are many lists out there that proclaim the ‘Most Beautiful Libraries in the World’ or ‘Libraries You Should Visit Before You Die’, and I like to read them for two reasons: to see how many libraries I can tick off and say, “Yes, I’ve been there!”, and to add new libraries to my list.

A note on these lists, however: these lists typically contain grand, beautiful libraries. There are palatial and majestic libraries out there in the world, libraries with marble floors and columns, and what seem like endless rows of bookshelves. You know the ones. They are spectacular libraries that intimidate. These are generally national libraries, or a city’s first or central library, or academic libraries. My bucket list contains these libraries, and I will never say no to an opportunity to visit them. But I also love the library that never makes it onto those lists; the humble neighbourhood library that perhaps isn’t as well funded, or is open as many hours as its users would like, or whose decor and furnishings might not have been updated for a number of years because its budgetary priorities lay elsewhere. Read more...

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