From the moment I entered the hushed, sacred precinct of the Brownsville Children's Library in Brownsville, Brooklyn, back in the mid-1930s, I have been a passionate advocate of the public library.
It is time to talk seriously about branch libraries. It is time to focus on the community libraries that are within walking distance of nearly each and every New Yorker.
The bottom line is libraries and the institutions associated with them are predictable and convenient targets for anyone taking an axe to a government budget. While the services they provide are vital, they're relatively invisible to the powerful.
The sounds of libraries today reveal the impact of libraries throughout our lives -- from the excited giggles of toddlers in storytimes to the "aha's!" of young people engaged in inquiry to the quiet conversations of senior citizens discovering new authors and using computers to research.
There is something about holding a book and being able to turn the pages that I find comforting. In today's 21st century, books may become obsolete. For me that's something I find scary.
Why do we so often ignore the very advice that can save us? The answer may very well be found in Disrupted by Stefan Pollack which is easily one of the most important books of the year.
This event has a hypnotic quality to it. After being there for 72 hours now there are patterns which are emerging.
The paint on my worn out ol' library soapbox is getting rather chipped these days, but I'm about to get back up on it, my friends. Brace yourselves.
I live across the street from a library, or at least what used to be a library. The Donnell Library on West 53rd Street. Today, it is a big hole in the ground.
Please help us in our campaign to keep libraries across New York City open, stocked, and staffed.
If someone too poor or otherwise unable to buy a specific product is given that product for free, has the product's creator lost a sale?
Pew found that 91 percent of Americans (16 or older) say that public libraries are important to their communities, and 76 percent say libraries are important to them and their families. I can't think of another idea, place, or issue that 91 percent of Americans support.
A library in the middle of a community is a cross between an emergency exit, a life raft and a festival. They are cathedrals of the mind; hospitals of the soul; theme parks of the imagination.
Libraries are necessary to support these dreams, since they are the public institutions that new Americans and diverse groups rely on the most to support continued education, and English language and technology skills needed to thrive and compete in today's competitive global market.
To the surprise of many readers, public library e-book "shelves" now sport gaping holes. The Witness by Nora Roberts? Unseen. The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark? Missing. Drop Dead Healthy by A.J. Jacobs? DOA.
Google has not killed the library and ebooks won't do it either. The biggest threat to the public library in American culture is limited hours.
by Emily St. John Mandel
Published on September 9th, 2014
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