Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Other perspectives

Radical Reference has been previously mentioned in this blog. In order to give some air time to other perspectives in library politics and collection development, I am posting links to two recent articles that, I should say, don't represent my own personal opinions. I think it is fairly safe to assume that they also don't represent the political opinions of (dare I say) most librarians.

Banned Books Week: Smoke screen of hypocrisy

The Loneliness of a Conservative Librarian (subscription to the Chronicle of Higher Education is required; visit a library for access)

2 comments:

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Barbara said...

Alec, thanks for this - I do see a right-wing backlash forming up that parallels the "Academic Bill of Rights" pushed by David Horowitz that supposedly stands up for conservative students who are fed a liberal line by largely leftist faculty (there's an AAUP statement that points out that second-guessing all course content interferes with the faculty's professional role). Certainly, in defending the original Bill of Rights by opposing suppression of speech, librarians have locked horns with right-wing groups - and at times with the US Department of Justice. But if subscribing to professional beliefs that happen to parallel some left-wing perspectives and that happen to irritate some (but not all) conservatives we run the risk of alienating politically conservative librarians... well, let's talk about it. I don't subscribe to the notion that librarians must have no opinions in order to be hospitable to diverse opinions.

Barbara
PS: There's an interesting online discussion at the Chron on this and on a pair of articles detabing tenure for librarians. That plus several other interesting pieces focused on libraries.