Libraries and Democracy: The Cornerstones of Liberty
By: Nancy Kranich (editor)Paperback
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During World War II when the future of democracy was uncertain, Franklin D. Roosevelt described libraries as "the great symbols of the freedom of the mind," "essential to the functioning of a democratic society." Kranich begins this new collection of essays with Roosevelt's sentiment in mind. From Librarian of Congress, James Billington, to founding director of the Center for the Book, John Cole, the leading-edge information specialists of the day share their insights on the role libraries play in advancing democracy. One of the few institutions in the world where people have free access to information and thereby the opportunity to participate in all aspects of society, the American library truly is a symbol of democracy. In this work, prominent contributors from all sides of the profession (including a community outreach activist on libraries in impoverished communities and an information policy scholar whose research for the FCC led to official recognition of the digital divide) tackle hot button issues. Thoughtful essays on how the Internet influences the political process - such as Susan B.
Kretchmer's analysis of recent court decisions and director of George Washington University's award-winning National Security Archive, Thomas Blanton's discussion on information ethics ("From the White House E-mail to the Stasi Files") - shed light on how theoretical concepts have practical implications. As issues such as filtering and copyright protection take center stage in libraries everywhere, librarians, advocates, and policymakers alike can find answers to tough questions in this thorough examination of a complex and critical topic.
A tireless advocate for individual nights to information and 2000-2001 President of the American Library Association, Nancy Kranich has spearheaded ALA's freedom of information initiatives, launched the Association's first advocacy training program, and established the James Madison Awards honoring champions of the Public's Right to Know. Currently on leave from her position as Associate Dean of Libraries at New York University, she has worked closely with Congressional and Executive officials on information policy issues and has testified at Congressional hearings. A widely published author, Kranich serves as an Advisory Board member and Treasurer for the National Security Archive in Washington and on the Advisory Board for the Annenberg Public Policy Center Project on Children and the Media. Kranich earned a master's degree in Public Administration from New York University's Wagner School of Public Service, and a master's degree in library science from the University of Wisconsin.
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- ID: 9780838908082
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