Monday, February 2, 2009

MIS-Race and Place

My MIS for this week is from "Race and Place" and is actually the last three sentences of the article. It states, "We want to believe that libraries are politically neutral and colorblind. To sustain this belief we close our eyes as we steer. But who gets run over in the process?" This seems to be the exact opposite of what has been discussed in class: Hall seems to think that libraries are everything that a third place is not.

I chose this passage because I thought it summed up the entirety of the article, whose theme was the antithesis of the next passage from Better Together. I could readily agree with many of the comments and views expressed in "Race and Place," but thought that many of them were a bit beyond what actually happens in many libraries. Not to say that Hall is lying or exaggerating; I just find it hard to believe that this happens in a majority of libraries, which was the feeling I got from the article. When "Race and Place" is compared against Better Together, the latter's situation seems more well-founded in fact and more wide-spread than the former's. The Chicago Public Library seems to bring everyone together is the way that has been discussed in the Tuesday morning lectures. Hall's point of view is the exact opposite--that libraries tend to segregate and divide more than they unite and bridge socioeconomic divides.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, good point. When I see statements about libraries having political positions, I wonder how can a brick building have feelings? It doesn't! Even if the library workers at the white cathedral are unfriendly or even racist, that does not mean the library itself is bad. Hall can still check out books regardless. It is the patrons that define the library, not the attitude of some government workers, who are easy to replace compared to the building itself.