Monday, August 24, 2009

Libraries ARE punk

A blog I follow, Swiss Army Librarian, had an entry discussing a LJ article and follow up post that compare libraries to punk rock. The original entry pointed out a few of these similarities and common stereotypes. Though I never really thought of it before, perhaps this is part of what drew me to working in libraries in the first place: libraries are punk!
As a little punk teen (pre-mallification of punk with the ease of Hot Topic) my core values centered around equality, freedom, knowledge – values similarily shared by most librarians. As a teen I cared deeply about changing the world and was disappointed by my generation’s lack of activism. After completing my undergraduate degree I was disappointed by how little difference my office cubicle jobs made in the world and I often felt lost and a like a phony. When I first started working in libraries in 2004, for the first time in my career I felt like I belonged and that I could give back. While it’s not always about fighting censorship or promoting banned or controversial books, I feel pretty good when I can connect someone with the information they are seeking. Getting my graduate degree made me more aware of the library’s importance in a democratic society and the outside forces that are constantly attempting to impede the access of information.
My only issue: the books mentioned in the LJ bibliography aren’t just for dudes! Chicks are rebels too!

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