[Newsletter Alte Geschichte] Fwd: Library crisis

Vortragseinladungen und Ankündigungen im Bereich der Altertumswissenschaften news-altegeschichte at lists.univie.ac.at
Fr Mär 16 12:39:01 CET 2018

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Von: Thomas Corsten <thomas.corsten at classics.ox.ac.uk>
Datum: 16.03.18 11:35 (GMT+01:00)
An: Niedermaier Werner <werner.niedermaier at univie.ac.at>
Betreff: FW: Library crisis

Lieber Herr Niedermaier,

Könnten Sie diese Schreckensnachricht mit Petition, bitte, über sämtliche Verteiler versenden? Vielen Dank!

Herzliche Grüße,
Thomas Corsten

From: Classicists [CLASSICISTS at liverpool.ac.uk] on behalf of helen lauer [00000041c3df5087-dmarc-request at listserv.liv.ac.uk]
Sent: 15 March 2018 18:44
To: CLASSICISTS at liverpool.ac.uk
Subject: Re: Library crisis

Same thing at the University of Ghana.  The Balme library's holdings of periodicals, thanks to decades of dedicated avuncular support from University of London, the progenitor of UG before Independence, was second to none in the West African region, also extending beyond since little or no investment in scholarship exists in Central Africa or East for that matter, apart from Tanzania and Uganda.  So there were stacks and stacks of philosophy journals dating back in some cases to the early 1900s. Classics, a few to the late 19th century.  And of a sudden, all were gone, and in their place were miles of shiny ceramic floor tiles and plywood, fake wood carousels but mostly a lot of floor space, as if it were a health spa or dance rehearsal room.  For what?  Renovation, means everything should look new and shiny for the pictures uploaded on the internet.  I fought for a couple semesters to find out how my students could get access to their laboratory material, their data, the life blood of their discipline, but was met with cold indifference and irritation by library staff.  Offended at one point, i was assured that nothing had been thrown away (how colo of me, how prejudiced to assume something so anti intellectual could be done with the periodicals) so where were they?  Locked up without access, indefinitely.  Feast for the bookworms and the paper mold.

I guess these are signs of the end of the book era.  Future children will laugh at those quaint things people used to hold in their hands and turn 'pages' of marks called words . . . .  It's a nasty Brave New World up ahead.

H. Lauer, PhD, FGA
Chief Editor UTAFITI Journal
College of Humanities
(Professor, Dept Philosophy & Religious Studies)
University of Dar es Salaam

On Thursday, March 15, 2018, 9:31:42 PM GMT+3, Justina Gregory <jgregory at SMITH.EDU> wrote:

The University of Texas is by no means alone in its bibliophobic
policy.  At Smith College, which boasted one of the largest and
best-curated collections of any college in the U.S., the books have
been removed (some to be shipped offsite, others to vanish) and the
library building torn down, to be replaced by a student activities
center. The resistance of a small group of faculty was met with
evasions, denials, impatience, and suppression.  One expects fierce
anti-intellectualism from the Taliban or Isis; it's a shock to
encounter it in university administrators.

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