[Review] Battles, David M. The History of Public Library Access for African Americans in the South, or, Leaving Behind the Plow (Metuchen, NJ; Scarecrow Press, 2009)

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
James V. Carmichael, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: For at least thirty-five years and probably since the formation of the Library History Round Table in 1947, library historians have been exhorted to broaden their narrative appeal to a wider range of publishers, to the public, and most of all to other historians, since the annual Bibliography of American History has not yet deigned to legitimize the history of librarianship as a separate field of study by its inclusion. As Wayne Wiegand has noted, for "a profession dedicated to multiculturalism, our historical literature demonstrates too much tunnel vision" (Libraries & Culture 35 [2000]: 12). The proliferation of new disciplines, the morphing of traditional disciplines into postmodern variants, the legitimization of nonquantitative methodology and social history, the human rights movement, and the expansion of professionalism and corporatization of the academy have added hurdles for library historians to clear but also offered new opportunities to add narrative vigor and broad relevance to a story that many of librarianship's own practitioners consider to be dry-as-dust irrelevancy. Add to these caveats the information science versus library science debate, and it is small wonder that to date librarianship has penetrated only the annual Popular Culture Conference more than once, where special sessions on the librarian stereotype provide amusement.

Additional Information

Libraries & the Cultural Record
Language: English
Date: 2010
Book Review, Library Studies

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