Tuesday, April 26, 2011

An Anthropologist in the Libraries of LA

No, not me.  No field trips for me, yet.

But I was sent this link to a great interview of the new head of the Library Foundation in LA--this gentleman is a trained anthropologist who did fieldwork in the Amazon, as well as many other non-library related jobs (among them, running the Sundance Institute, and while he did that, starting the documentary division of that film institute).

He clearly sees the LA libraries as community resources, not just (as if they ever were) dusty book repositories.  He describes libraries as "21st century spaces."

So do we, here at Atkins.  More and more of our collections are digital, in part because that is one of the best and most effective ways we can increase our patron access to world-class collections.  In thinking about space, we are thinking about the work you need to do, which includes the need to use books but also includes computers, digital materials, and eventually, information formatted in ways we haven't even imagined yet.

What does your library mean to you?  Is Atkins "your library?"  Or is it the public library back home?  Or in your neighborhood here in Charlotte?  Where are you when you are "in the library?"  Are you here in the building?  Or at home, "in" our website?

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