Wednesday, October 24, 2001

infolibre will be on hiatus until next Wednesday. If you've been stopping by, drop me a line and let me know what you think.

Voices of the Holocaust:

During the summer of 1998, staff [at Illinois Institute of Technology's] Galvin Library uncovered a 16-volume set of typescripts that detail first-hand accounts of horrible brutality, incredible survival, and liberation of Holocaust victims. The set includes 70 of the original 109 interviews that were conducted in 1946 and transcribed into English by Dr. David Boder . . .

This site will integrate, in the near future, the transcriptions of the interviews, reproductions of the original wire recordings, maps, essays by scholars and survivors, papers of Dr. Boder, and other information from our archives, into a seamless, searchable, multimedia Web site. This approach will enable scholars, students, and the public to navigate through translations of the interviews, hear the actual voices of the survivors, and pinpoint geographic locations mentioned on the Web site. We hope that this approach offers you a rich learning tool from which to explore an immensely valuable lesson in our human history.
An updated version of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is available.
IFLA Call for Papers:

The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) will be meeting in Glasgow, Scotland, August 18 - 24 2002. As part of the conference, the Section on Reference Work is is planning an Open Session entitled: "Globalization of Reference Services" with the following possible subthemes:

Cultural difference and reference work, e.g. origins and attitudes: training reference librarians for a pluralistic world/ sensitivity of reference librarians towards multicultural diversity.

Reaching out to multicultural populations in reference work.

New roles for reference librarians, e.g. comparison of different forms of reference work, reference work in different situations with different tools.

Cooperation/collaboration of reference work e.g. how are reference services to be defined in a world of networked knowledge? What would "cooperative reference" look like?


UK Government Urged to Invest in Regional Museums:

The Government was urged yesterday to find more than £250 million to prevent regional museums and art galleries, the pride of Victorian Britain, from sliding into oblivion.

A report, published yesterday by Resource, the Government's advisory body on museums and libraries, said many of the 1,860 regional museums were in a state of "serious crisis". Years of underfunding had caused scholarship, conservation, exhibitions, care of objects and morale to slip to dangerously low standards . . .

However, the study also said that though numbers had fallen recently, 77 million people visited regional museums last year - more than the annual attendances at football matches or rock concerts.

Two links from the latest update to

  • Small Press Distribution:

    Small Press Distribution is a non-profit (501(c)3) literary arts organization located in Berkeley, California. Our mission is to nurture a cultural context in which the literary arts are valued and sustained, and we accomplish this mission by providing wholesaling services to independent presses and through our public programs and advocacy efforts. We believe that the written word, in its most eloquent form, deserves the broadest possible distribution.

    SPD offers a variety of services useful to librarians.

  • CNN's envy-inducing interview with Elizabeth Connor, library director for Ross University School of Medicine in tropical Portsmouth, Commonwealth of Dominica:

    Q: What's an unforgivable trait in a colleague?

    A: Underestimating the power and influence of an experienced librarian. Running a first-rate library can be as complex as running a dot-com startup in terms of sharing a vision and handling human resources, technology and work flow.

    Annetna Nepo: the Harvard Multilingual Poetry Review is seeking submissions for its first issue. For more information write:

    Literary Fellows Office
    Dudley House 3rd Floor
    Harvard University
    Cambridge, MA 02138 USA

    Or email:

    A new issue of D-Lib is available.

    Tuesday, October 23, 2001

    New Delhi's Gandhi Museum Library:

    [The] Library has one of the largest available collection of books and documents on Mahatma Gandhi; a fairly large collection of books on Freedom Movement in India (1757-1947), and a large 'General' section of books on Social Sciences, Humanities, Literature and Nature Cure. Its collection has now grown to about 27,000 titles (books) and 25,000 photo-copies of letters, telegrams, notes etc., written by Mahatma Gandhi to others or by others to Mahatma Gandhi.

    Thanks to Library Stuff.
    Emma Goldman

    Police mug shot of Emma Goldman for arrest on a charge of incitement to riot
    at a demonstration by the unemployed in New York, September 1, 1893.

    The Emma Goldman Papers Project from Berkeley Digital Libraries SunSITE:

    Emma Goldman, undoubtedly one of the most notable and influential women in modern American history, consistently promoted a wide range of controversial movements and principles, including anarchism, equality and independence for women, freedom of thought and expression, radical education, sexual freedom and birth control, and union organization and the eight-hour day. Goldman's advocacy of these causes, which many deemed subversive at the time, helped set the historical context for some of today's most important political and social debates . . .

    Since 1980, the Emma Goldman Papers Project has collected, organized, and edited tens of thousands of documents by and about Goldman from around the world. The Emma Goldman Papers: A Microfilm Edition (Chadwyck-Healey Inc., 1991) and Emma Goldman: A Guide to Her Life and Documentary Sources (Chadwyck-Healey Inc., 1995) are housed in libraries across the country and internationally. Most of the material is new to the scholarly community and provides a window not only into Goldman but also into social and cultural movements in late nineteenth- and early twentieth- century America, Europe, Asia and Latin America. The Guide also includes unique documentation of government and press reactions to radicalism.

    The site also features an online exhibit about Goldman's life.

    Monday, October 22, 2001

    [Chonicle of Higher Education]

    Digital Libraries and Sweatshops:

    Most archivists and librarians support sending digitizing jobs overseas. Because it lowers their costs, they can put more scholarly texts online, they say. But the possibility that overseas keyboarding might raise the same fair labor issues that have confronted overseas apparel manufacturers has prompted people on some campuses to start asking questions, both of contractors and of themselves. "The principle of sending this work offshore, especially to the third world, is something I think American universities should be concerned with," says Richard Strassberg, associate director of the industrial-and-labor-relations library at Cornell University.

    With a shout out to NewBreed Librarian.

    [Orion Online]

    Thoughts in the Presence of Fear by Wendell Berry

    We now have a clear, inescapable choice that we must make. We can continue to promote a global economic system of unlimited "free trade" among corporations, held together by long and highly vulnerable lines of communication and supply, but now recognizing that such a system will have to be protected by a hugely expensive police force that will be worldwide, whether maintained by one nation or several or all, and that such a police force will be effective precisely to the extent that it oversways the freedom and privacy of the citizens of every nation.

    Or we can promote a decentralized world economy which would have the aim of assuring to every nation and region a local self-sufficiency in life-supporting goods . . . We do need a "new economy", but one that is founded on thrift and care, on saving and conserving, not on excess and waste. An economy based on waste is inherently and hopelessly violent, and war is its inevitable by-product. We need a peaceable economy.

    Thanks to wood s lot.
    [Outlook India]

    War is Peace

    The world doesn't have to choose between the Taliban and the US government. All the beauty of the world—literature, music, art—lies between these two fundamentalist poles.

    by Arundhati Roy

    Nothing can excuse or justify an act of terrorism, whether it is committed by religious fundamentalists, private militia, people's resistance movements—or whether it's dressed up as a war of retribution by a recognised government. The bombing of Afghanistan is not revenge for New York and Washington. It is yet another act of terror against the people of the world. Each innocent person that is killed must be added to, not set off against, the grisly toll of civilians who died in New York and Washington.

    People rarely win wars, governments rarely lose them. People get killed. Governments moult and regroup, hydra-headed. They first use flags to shrink-wrap peoples' minds and suffocate real thought, and then as ceremonial shrouds to cloak the mangled corpses of the willing dead . . . Put your ear to the ground in this part of the world, and you can hear the thrumming, the deadly drumbeat of burgeoning anger. Please. Please, stop the war now.

    Thanks to Dale Wertz.

    Sunday, October 21, 2001


    The library as cornerstone of a national identity - in this case the new library at Addis Ababa University's Institute of Ethiopian Studies:

    Ethiopian studies today, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, faces one of its greatest challenges, and one in which we appeal for help from all readers. Since its establishment in 1963, the Institute has made itself central to the study of Ethiopia, in all areas of scholarship. Ethiopia has an age-old tradition of indigenous learning, in which its people can feel proud.

    However, as far as the modern study of the country is concerned, most scholars of Ethiopia, prior to the founding of the Institute of Ethiopian Studies, lived outside the country; virtually all works on Ethiopia, including scholarly periodicals, were published abroad; academic gatherings on the country were held almost exclusively in other countries, indeed continents . . .

    The major problem - and challenge - for today relates to the Institute Library, which, as far as possible, collects all works produced inside or outside Ethiopia . . . The [present] building . . . was planned for State Receptions, not for the storage of millions of books, manuscripts, pamphlets, and newspapers, and is, we believe, groaning under the weight of so much scholarly material. (It groans, but it wants more).

    The Society, and the Institute, is appealing to all individuals and institutions of good-will to assist in the noble endeavour of building the New Library: we appeal to Ethiopian intellectuals, and to the media, to help with creating awareness of the importance of the Library and Museum project; to the Ethiopian business community at home and abroad . . . to Ethiopian and foreign corporations and foundations; to the diplomatic community . . . and to the ordinary man, woman or child in the street.


    Dispiriting school library news from around North America, first from Ontario:

    A shortage of funds for school libraries has left some of them teetering on the edge of extinction, say education experts who warn of a crisis in the field. Scarce resources have forced school boards to choose between keeping their libraries and paying for textbooks, teachers and guidance counsellors.

    Too many times, the libraries lose out, said Sya Van Geest, a retired teacher-librarian who now volunteers at her granddaughter's school library in southern Ontario.

    More from the National Post. Meanwhile, the annual Florida Association for Media in Education conference has been cancelled - an excerpt from their short press release:

    Regretfully, the Florida Association for Media in Education (FAME) announced today (10/18/01) that the annual conference, media @the center, scheduled for November 7-9, 2001 in Jacksonville, FL is cancelled.

    Escalating budget restrictions for Florida school districts has frozen travel budgets, meaning the number of registrants for the annual conference is so low, the conference is unable to continue as planned.

    FAME is negotiating with speakers, authors and presenters to provide as much of the conference content as possible in forthcoming issues of FMQ (Florida Media Quarterly).

    Melt Banana

    Melt Banana turned in a furious Peel Session earlier this month - not to be missed.

    Internet Filters: A Public Policy Report:

    In the spring and summer of 2001, the Free Expression Policy Project of the National Coalition Against Censorship surveyed all of the studies and tests that it was able to locate describing the actual operation of 19 products or software programs that are commonly used to filter out World Wide Web sites and other communications on the Internet. This report summarizes the results of that survey. Its purpose is to provide a resource for policymakers and the general public as they grapple with the difficult, often hotly contested issues raised by the now-widespread use of Internet filters.

    The existing studies and tests vary widely. They range from anecdotal accounts to extensive tests applying social-science methodologies. In some instances, we located only one or two test reports; in other cases—for example, Cyber Patrol, SmartFilter, and X-Stop—we found a great many. Most tests simply describe the actual sites that a particular product blocked when Web searches were conducted. Nearly every one, however, revealed massive over-blocking by filtering software.

    The Bull Transcended

    The Bull Transcended

    Kakuan's 10 Bulls

    Transcribed by Nyogen Senzaki and Paul Reps with illustrations by Tomikichiro Tokuriki