Some critics have expressed concerns that if the plan is approved, the library’s intellectual focus will be sacrificed to an avalanche of exhibitions and the increased foot traffic that would result. In an age when facts seem to be up for grabs and information flows quickly but often with little authority, they say, the library’s academic mission is more critical than ever.
But Hayden and her team — which includes two senior executives with museum backgrounds — say the changes would spark renewed interest in the library’s history, its collections and its role as a research institution.
Most of the books in the exhibit are about one to three inches high and would nestle easily in the palm of your hand. Some are the size of a thumbnail. (There are also a few ultra-micro-miniatures, with no dimension greater than a quarter of an inch; one, shockingly, looks to be about as big as the period in this sentence.) The oldest is a cuneiform tablet from about 2300 B.C.; the newest was published last year. They are valued in the tens or hundreds or thousands of dollars; the rarest of miniature antiquarian books can sell in the six or even seven figures.
What’s that thing they always say about if you do something you love you’ll never work a day in your life? I mean that’s true and all—when you love something, it can feel less like work and more like passion—but I’m also here to tell you that tenderness gets a little strained when you try to use it to pay your overdue power bill.
That’s right, I’m talking about a library paycheck! That tiny little figure that gets added to your bank account after you work a 40-hour plus work week. It’s not fun to talk about money (it’s truly a nightmare), but it’s something we all understand. We need to make a salary so we can afford to live. We need to get paid.
Just 150 years ago, in 1869, Tolstoy published the final installment of War and Peace, often regarded as the greatest of all novels. In his time, Tolstoy was known as a nyetovshchik—someone who says nyet, or no, to all prevailing opinion—and War and Peace discredits the prevailing views of the radical intelligentsia, then just beginning to dominate Russian thought. The intelligentsia’s way of thinking is still very much with us and so Tolstoy’s critique is, if anything, even more pertinent today.
Joining the library saved me money and space, yes. It also permanently changed the way I read. Where I used to heavily research books before committing to them, I now borrow indiscriminately. There’s no fear! If I hate the book, it doesn’t matter; it’s going back into circulation when I’m done.
This means I can pick up volumes that previously intimidated me. I tear through books I may have overlooked in the past for lack of desire to spend money on them. Not every book I take out of the library becomes a new favorite, but the experience of reading them is enriching nonetheless.
The results after the first two 20-week cycles indicates the “Library Innovation Studios: Transforming Rural Communities” project, a partnership between the library commission, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Nebraska Innovation Studio, Nebraska Extension and the Regional Library Systems, has found an appetite for makerspaces in public libraries from Plattsmouth to Ainsworth, Loup City to North Platte.
“Collecting fines is the single greatest point of friction between library staff and patrons,” he told the San Francisco Public Library Commission last month.
The commission voted that night to make San Francisco the latest library system to go fine-free. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors needs to vote on the library’s recommendations, but Mayor London Breed has already voiced her support.
Research data from 160,000 adults in 31 countries concludes that a sizeable home library gave teen school leavers skills equivalent to university graduates who didn’t read
An Ohio library says a 1968 copy of Life magazine with the Beatles on the cover has been returned by a borrower who apologized for stealing it as a “kid” and sent $100 to cover late fees.
The New York Public Library has one of the largest public collections in the world. But, unlike Amazon, it does not have seemingly infinite storage. Every book must earn its place on crowded shelves. Nothing gets there by accident. With millions of books to choose from, the library often gets asked how a book gets on the shelves.