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Ganesh is the elephant headed god in the Hindu religion, and is a heavenly patron of libraries. Ganesh invented the alphabet, and broke off his right tusk in order to make the first pen. The capital stroke used in Sanskrit letters is made in his honor.
An image of Ganesh is usually placed over the entrance to a library in India.
Something of interest to those who are in to studying library lore.
Little known to tourists, the American Library in Paris has existed since books were first sent to WW1 doughboys. Here the LA Times gives us perspective on both the history of the library and its current operations. Here's the library's website.
Like every library in the world, it is challenged by changing reading habits. “I’ve understood all along — every library understands this — that if all you’re doing is warehousing books and being a lending library, you’re going to die,” director Charles Trueheart, a former foreign correspondent from the Washington Post says. “You’ve got to offer people all kinds of other stuff, now that they may be going for books in another way. ... And our programming is not just authors, but it’s art appreciation, music, fashion, education, politics, current events.”
The library also contracts with U.S. universities to provide services to American exchange students and compiles study material for French students seeking accreditation as English teachers. Indeed, for all its appeal to Americans in Paris, the library has plenty of French members and supporters.
“There are a lot of French people who are very serious about keeping up their English, and they come to events in English at the library,” says author Diane Johnson, who has lived off and on in Paris for decades and chairs the library’s Writers Council, composed of such colleagues as Julian Barnes and Adam Gopnik.
And we're back even though we're now illegal in Vietnam! Then again, so is the rest of LISNews as we discuss in the program. The hiatus is over and normal programming resumes notwithstanding September 2nd being a holiday. In this week's episode we talk about the threat of the Syrian Electronic Army and preparing for it. We also have a unique news miscellany that ends with a fun item from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis) (Speex) (Extremely Hi-Fidelity Audio via Free Lossless Audio Codec), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. New reading material for the Air Staff can be purchased here.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/. -- Read More24:00 minutes (9.65 MB)
Protest is taking a new form in Istanbul where I was fortunate enough to visit about a month ago. Individuals are standing in their beloved square and reading books of their choice.
Violent scenes are still occurring around Turkey, including in Istanbul once again this past weekend, but the Standing Man protests continue unabated.
The images in this article explore one aspect of the protest in Taksim Square, ongoing since before the communal standing took off. Public reading and informal education has been notable since the earliest days of the protest, but has since merged with the Standing Man to form "The Taksim Square Book Club".
The chosen reading material of many of those who take their stand is reflective, in part, of the thoughtfulness of those who have chosen this motionless protest to express their discontent.
For years, thousands of children throughout the world have been studying a poem about sunflowers believing it to be the work of the 19th-century poet William Blake.
Reading lists have included it for study, websites have included it in lesson plans and four US state school boards have recommended it to students. There is even anecdotal evidence of one of Britain’s Ofsted inspectors accepting “the fact” of Blake’s authorship of the poem when it was presented to her by a group of young students via a project on their display board.
Now though, after a 12-year misunderstanding which illustrates how effectively the internet can spread misinformation, the record could finally be put straight thanks to the diligence of a Hertfordshire librarian and blogger.
Thomas Pitchford, aka “The Library Spider”, has verified that the poem – “Two Sunflowers Move into the Yellow Room” – was written by a 1980s US poet, Nancy Willard, and published in an anthology of hers dedicated to Blake’s work, A Visit to William Blake’s Inn.
Story from The Independent.
for your Monday entertainment... Britain's Cascade Dance Company at the Tunbridge Wells Library in "Big Dance Library Project", recorded in the summer of 2012.
Taksim Gezi Park is an urban park in Taksim Square, in Istanbul's Beyo?lu district. It is one of the smallest parks of Istanbul. In May 2013, plans to replace the park with a reconstruction of the former Taksim Military Barracks (demolished 1940) intended to house a shopping mall sparked the 2013 Taksim Gezi Park protests in Turkey.
Publishing houses to unite in Gezi Park to distribute major resistance material: Books. "One of the major acts of resistance for protesters occupying Taksim Gezi Park has been to pick up a good book and read it - preferably in front of a police officer. Now, thanks to an initiative launched by publishing houses to organize book distribution, they are assured to have lots of material in the coming days."
This week's program starts off with a brief essay talking about the disintegration of having a coherent "popular culture" in the United States then turns to the strange case of the Harlem Shake in Oxford. After that the episode wraps up with a news miscellany.
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This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit
Students and politicians alike are calling for an Oxford University librarian to be reinstated after she was fired for the filming of a Harlem Shake video in one of the school's libraries.
Though the librarian, Calypso Nash, did not actually take part in the making of the video, she allegedly lost her job because the filming took place on her watch, the Independent reports.