why i library

06 Apr

In George Orwell’s essay “Why I Write,” he lists four “great motives” that people write — sheer egoism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse, and political purpose.  I was originally going to think of reasons people become librarians, but instead I decided to list four motives for using the library (in no particular order).

  • for love of the book (or film, magazine, cd, etc.)
  • frugality
  • computer and internet access
  • space, both reflective and social

What are some other “great motives?”  While I would love to think the expertise of librarians is a main draw for people, I’m really not sure how true that is — just speaking from my own experience.  In elementary and middle school, I spent hours and hours at my local public library.  The reason I kept going back was the books.  Though I loved my librarians, I don’t recall asking them for recommendations.  As I moved onto high school, while I still went to the library often, I never approached a librarian for help.  In undergrad, I used our academic library (though not as much) — but never the librarians.  I have to wonder if my personal lack of librarian use is because I grew up consulting Google and Wikipedia.

I also know I’m not the only one.  I don’t have any numbers to back me up, but I’m pretty confident that the number of people who use the library outweighs the number of people who consult librarians.  What I can’t figure out is if that’s a good or bad thing.

1 Comment

Posted by on April 6, 2011 in Uncategorized


One response to “why i library

  1. Stephanie Bennett

    April 6, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    Such a great idea! I’ll brainstorm and get back to this…


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