As the American Theological Library Association (ATLA) celebrates the important milestone of its 60th anniversary this year, the editors have brought together in a single-volume anthology some of the best contributions to this field. Essays and papers from the past sixty years are grouped into six topical chapters (theological librarianship's characteristics, dimensions, educational role, settings, development within ATLA's sixty years, and most noteworthy changes), each of which is introduced by a present-day theological librarian. This collection is likely to be valuable in many ways: as a compendium of wisdom and "best practices" over several generations, as a means of securing a grasp of how ATLA's importance and influence as an association has grown over time, and even for the way it brings back to light the life and work of so many fine librarians, Raymond Morris (Yale Divinity Library) and Julia Pettee (Union Theological Seminary) among them.
Even more important, A Broadening Conversation affirms vividly that (instead of the ethos of tradition and continuity that one might suppose) a mix of trusted routines with perpetual change is what has always been on the menu for theological librarians in their daily work. This is at the heart of what continues to make theological librarianship such a challenging and rewarding vocation.
Melody Layton McMahon is Catalog Librarian and Liaison to Religious Studies at the Grasselli Library, John Carroll University, University Heights, OH. David R. Stewart is Director of Library Services at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, MN. He was previously Associate Librarian at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Part 1 Foreword Part 2 Introduction Part 3 Part 1: The Distinctive Character of Theological Librarianship Chapter 4 1. Introduction Chapter 5 2. Theological Librarianship as a Ministry Chapter 6 3. The Theological Librarian: His Commitment and Strategy Chapter 7 4. Developing Professionally on the Job Chapter 8 5. That They All May Be One Chapter 9 6. Some Values in Theological Librarianship Chapter 10 7. On Spiritual Reading and Religious Reading in Peril: President's Address Chapter 11 8. Power and Responsibility: Reflections on Theological Librarianship Part 12 Part 2: Theological Librarians at Work Chapter 13 9. Introduction Chapter 14 10. The Cataloger and Instruction Chapter 15 11. Problems in Manuscript Cataloging Chapter 16 12. Archival Good Works for Theologians Chapter 17 13. Changing a Pile of Books into a Library Chapter 18 14. Collection Development in a Theological Research Library Chapter 19 15. Circulation in Theological Libraries: Seeking and Saving the Lost Chapter 20 16. Parchment, Paper, PDF: The Literature of Theological Librarianship Part 21 Part 3: The Theological Librarian as Educator Chapter 22 17. Introduction Chapter 23 18. Seminary Libraries and Theological Education Chapter 24 19. The Community of Learning Chapter 25 20. Professors and Librarians: Partners in the Oikumene Chapter 26 21. Theological Libraries Revisited Chapter 27 22. The Structures of Religious Literature: Conceptual Frameworks for Improving Bibliographic Instruction Chapter 28 23. Theological Libraries and Theological Librarians in Theological Education Part 29 Part 4: Theological Libraries: Contexts and Constituencies Chapter 30 24. Introduction Chapter 31 25. Joint Panel Discussion: The Library in the Life of the Seminary Chapter 32 26. Some Thoughts on the Joint Theological School-Liberal Arts College Library Chapter 33 27. The Theological Library: Servant or Partner? Chapter 34 28. Religious Studies and Theology Chapter 35 29. Serving the Religion Information Needs of the Public Part 36 Part 5: The American Theological Library Association: Reflections and Reminiscences Chapter 37 30. Introduction Chapter 38 31. Seminary Librarians (Greetings and Challenges from ATS) Chapter 39 32. Six Years of ATLA: A Historical Sketch Chapter 40 33. Building on Our Strengths for the Future Chapter 41 34. A Look at the Past Chapter 42 35. A Combined Greeting to ATLA 40 and Reflection on ATLA 1 Part 43 Part 6: Changes and Challenges Chapter 44 36. Introduction Chapter 45 37. On the Union Classification Chapter 46 38. When Catholic and Protestant Theologies Meet Chapter 47 39. Contemporary Challenges to Theological Librarianship Chapter 48 40. The Index to Religious Periodical Literature: Past, Present, and Future Chapter 49 41. Revolution, Evolutions, and Syndromes Chapter 50 42. Can Serious Academic Religious Book Publishing Survive in an Age of Pop Culture? Chapter 51 43. Globalization and Theological Libraries Chapter 52 44. Shadow and Substance Part 53 Afterword Part 54 About the Editors and Contributors