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lq:volume-4-issue-4

LQ Volume 4 Issue 4

Reading notes for the fourth volume and the fourth issue of The Library Quarterly.

To return to the list of notes on this volume: volume-4

Article 1

This entry is about:

Danton, J. Periam. (1934). Plea for a Philosophy of Librarianship: Philosophia vero omnium mater artium. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 527-551. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302121

Note: The first article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Plea for a Philosophy of Librarianship: Philosophia vero omnium mater artium.”

It was written by J. Periam Danton, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: University of Chicago

Note: This is probably the most cited article from these first few volumes.

Note: Equates librarianship with library science by applying one definition to the two terms:

Librarianship or library science is that branch of learning which has to do with the recognition, collection, organization, preservation, and utilization of graphic and printed records (pp. 528-529).

Note: First reference to Ranganathan's *Five laws of library science*. Danton writes:

But this treatise, as stimulating and interesting as it undoubtedly is, does not attempt to define the functions of library activity on any other bases than that of present-day good library service; … (p. 532).

So it's interesting that S. R. Ranganathan's book had sparked some discussions at this early of a date.

Note: A one sentence summary of Danton's criticism:

The crux of the matter is that the librarian has thus far concerned himself almost exclusively with process, achievement, and the immediate objective, and has given little or no thought to function or to justifying that function (p. 533).

Note: Danton addresses my above remark:

The term “librarianship” may be said to be equivalent to “library science” (p. 535).

Note: On science and philosophy (important to note for, at the very least, having a historical understanding of their use of the terms):

Any science deals fundamentally with the acquisition of facts and data; the description of those data through definition, analysis, and classification; explanation of them by the ascertainment of causes; and, finally, evaluation and the formulation of laws. Science concerns itself directly with concrete phenomena. A philosophy, on the other hand, is interested in aims and functions, in purpose and meaning (pp. 535-536).

Note: The aesthetic factor:

In contrast, although a philosophy of librarianship would be vitally interested, indirectly, in the scientifically derived data on reading interests, abilities, etc., it would be primarily concerned with purpose—that is, with finding out whether librarianship should concern itself with the question at all, and if so why… (p. 536).

Reflection: It's too often ignored — that science without philosophy and philosophy without science is impossible. To pretend that the relationship does not exist is, also, dangerous.

Note: I'm taking this out of context but I think it's an important example of what Danton thinks is an instance of the science of librarianship in practice. The preceding sentences, not quoted here, are important in that they reference some of the authors that have dominated these early volumes of LQ:

It should be noted, too, that one phase of library work—is, in a not very different sense, scientific in its approach and techniques. This is enumerative bibliography which, at its best, is the examination, description, and listing of books in accordance with certain well-defined principles and by means of a more or less universally accepted terminology (p. 538).

Note: Beginning at the top of page 540, good criticism on the lack of interest in libraries by sociologists, political scientists, etc. Need to come back to this someday. Interesting / respectful quote by a Wesley C. Mitchell that responds to this lack of treatment and attention.

Danton, though, soundly rejects Mitchell's argument.

Note: More aesthetic. See Danton's concrete example at the top of page 544.

Reflection: The *LQ* pushes the library science in the first volumes, and now pushes the philosophy of library science.

Reflection: I should have reread this article before I submitted my Parker piece. The discussion about isolation in the first paragraph of section 6 on page 546 would have been useful to add.

Note: Important discussion about the necessity of libraries on pages 548-549. They may or may not be, Danton seems to argue, but if we state they are, then that statement needs to be justified and not simply taken as an ideological presupposition.

Article 2

This entry is about:

Schütz, Géza. (1934). Bibliotheca Corvina. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 552-563. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302122

Note: The second article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Bibliotheca Corvina.”

It was written by Géza Schütz, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: Montclair Free Public Library

Note: Nice history of the Bibliotheca Corvina library.

Note: I wonder if any economic historians have examined the economics of early printing. I find this statement relevant to today:

unemployment was provoked there by the manufacture and the sale of printed books (p. 559).

Article 3

This entry is about:

Gaskill, H. V., Dunbar, R. M., & Brown, C. H. (1934). An Analytical Study of the Use of a College Library. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 564-587. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302123

Note: The third article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Analytical Study of the Use of a College Library.”

It was written by H. V. Gaskill, R. M. Dunbar, and C. H. Brown, who were affiliated with:

Affiliation: Iowa State College Library

Note: Although this article is about library use, some of the questions the authors raise in the first paragraph border on information behavior questions.

Note: This is a very thorough piece. Mentions the need for a qualitative study and I haven't seen that term used before in these early issues.

Note: Data collection and research questions:

Three methods were used for the collection of data: (1) count and analysis of attendance, (2) personal interviews, (3) count and analysis of slips for books charged over the assigned reading desk. An attempt was made to answer four questions: How many students use the library? For what purpose do students come to the library? Why do students fail to get what they want? What is the nature of the use of reserved books?

The authors pretested their interview questions.

Note: Important passage about information desires and librarians:

Five or six of the students who failed to obtain the material desired were not very complimentary to the library in their expressions of dissatisfaction. Students, like most of the rest of us, “want what they want when they want it.” One observant student complained that “the perpetual costume of a librarian seems to be a frown” (p. 582).

Note: The daily use number, given the student enrollment, is a bit high.

The mean daily use of the library at Iowa State College was 4,200 volumes. The student enrollment was 3,384.

Article 4

This entry is about:

Houlette, William D. (1934). Parish Libraries and the Work of the Reverend Thomas Bray. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 588-609. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302124

Note: The fourth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Parish Libraries and the Work of the Reverend Thomas Bray.”

It was written William D. Houlette, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: No Affiliation (Des Moines, Iowa)

Note: A history of colonial, parish libraries in Maryland, North Carolina, and South Carolina. Dry reading but interesting.

Article 5

This entry is about:

Freer, P. (1934). The Compilation of Union Lists of Serial Publications According to the “H.C.F.” of Titles. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 610-623. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302125

Note: The fifth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “The Compilation of Union Lists of Serial Publications According to the “H.C.F.” of Titles.”

It was written P. Freer, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: University of the Witwatersrand

Note: Technical article on cataloging union lists of periodicals. This is proto stuff — signifies some of the complicated problems that librarians were dealing with as scientific communication really began to take off. Nice example of the problem:

Incidentally, the arrangement here suggested will meet, perhaps better than any other, Mr. Smith's requirements of a union list, where he says: “The purpose of a Union List of periodicals is to enable a researcher to discover where he may consult a given periodical, from a reference which is generally not completely accurate, is frequently abbreviated, and is sometimes truncated to the point of lunacy” (p. 621).

Note: There's a good point on the importance of typesetting the list of periodicals so that the list is readable. We might call this a usability issue now.

Note: I have no idea what “H.C.F.” means. Aside from looking up some references the author points to, the main clue is this:

By that I mean that the all-important arranging word—the “H.C.F.”—occurs as part of their titles“ (p. 611).

Article 6

This entry is about:

McCue, George S. (1934). Libraries of the London Coffeehouses. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 624-627. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302126

Note: The sixth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Libraries of the London Coffeehouses.”

It was written George S. McCue, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: No Affiliation (New York City)

Note: Right away, the first sentence reminds me of an article written by Robert Darnton:

The London coffeehouses of Dryden's time had a great deal to do with the dissemination of the printed page (p. 624).

Darnton, R. (2000). An early information society: News and the media in eighteenth-century Paris. The American Historical Review, 105(1), 1-35. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/2652433

Note: Books (libraries) in coffee houses goes back centuries. The reference to one here is to the year 1694. Another reference to one in 1668.

Note: The author describes how publishers were really against lending libraries. Ah publishers.

Note: Really nice, short history of these early types of libraries. Good addition to any world library history reading list.

Article 7

This entry is about:

Spratt, H. P. (1934). Further Notes on Scientific and Technical Libraries in Northern Europe. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 628-638. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302127

Note: The seventh article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Further Notes on Scientific and Technical Libraries in Northern Europe.”

It was written H. P. Spratt, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: Science Museum Library

Note: This a continuation of this article: Spratt, 1934a

Note: The article begins by describing libraries in Warsaw, Poland.

At the “*Bibljoteka Publiczna (Public Library), Warszawa*, the author writes something about a school and a library collection on librarianship:

There is a special “library of librarianship” with a collection of 3,000 volumes, so comprehensive that even some of the present writer's articles are to be found there (if looked for). Finally, I was shown the school of librarianship, where students learn the use of decimal classification and so forth (p. 630).

Note: After describing a number of libraries in Poland, the author moves on to libraries in Helsinki and then to Russia.

Note: Just kind of interesting – about the ”Central Transport Library, Leningrad”:

It is of interest to mention that, in more than a hundred years, there have only been four successive librarians (p. 635).

Article 8

This entry is about:

Waples, Douglas. (1934). Graduate Theses Accepted by Library Schools in the United States during the Academic Year 1932-1933. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 639-641. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302128

Note: The eighth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Graduate Theses Accepted by Library Schools in the United States during the Academic Year 1932-1933.”

It was written Douglas Waples, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: University of Chicago

Note: This a continuation of this article: [Waples, 1933

Note: The article is a simple bibliography. The introduction mentions the previous year's article and then introduces this one. Waples writes:

Thirty-six graduate theses were accepted this year by four schools, namely: California, seven; Chicago, two; Columbia, thirteen; and Illinois, fourteen.

Waples then distributes the theses under the thirteen headings he created in the previous article. It's an interesting mix. Three of his subject headings are dedicated to some facet of bibliography:

  • enumerative bibliography
  • descriptive bibliography
  • critical bibliography

*Reflection:* I really would like to look at a lot these theses some day.

Article 9

This entry is about:

Bowerman, George F. (1934). Shall the Library Board Be Retained? The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 642-651. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302129

Note: The ninth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Shall the Library Board Be Retained?”

It was written George F. Bowerman, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: Public Library (Washington, D.C.)

Note: Public library governance was a major concern at the time. Not just the quality of governance, but the actual system of governance. Off the cuff, I think this is the fourth article on the broad topic (but there may be more) in these early volumes. The three I can immediately recall are:

- Joeckel, 1931a - Joeckel, 1931b - Wachtel, 1933

Note: One apparently persistent theme is a tension between public libraries and institutions of public education. Consider lines like this:

The specialized interests of the library should not be jeopardized by being merged with, and submerged by, the overshadowing interests of the schools (p. 644).

Note: Important historical perspective:

The recognized authoritative publication on the public library in America is The American public library by Dr. Arthur E. Bostwick, librarian of the St. Louis Public Library and former president of the American Library Association (p. 646).

The author quotes both Bostwick and Joeckel.

Additional sources:

  • Thomas H. Reed. (1934). Municipal Government in the United States. New York: Appleton-Century.
  • William B. Munro. (1934). Municipal Administration.

Nice article on the importance of the library board.

Article 10

This entry is about:

Hanson, J. C. M. (1934). Fritz Milkau, September 28, 1859-January 23, 1934. The Library Quarterly, 4(4), 652-654. url:http://www.jstor.org/stable/4302130

Note: The tenth article of the fourth issue of the fourth volume of The Library Quarterly is titled “Fritz Milkau, September 28, 1859-January 23, 1934.”

It was written J. C. M. Hanson, who was affiliated with:

Affiliation: No Affiliation (Sister Bay, Wisconsin)

Note: From his retirement, Hanson writes this tribute to Fritz Milkau, an important German librarian.

Note: As a side note, I haven't researched the length it took for these articles to go from submission to publication, but the death of Milkau (end of January) and the publication of this article (last volume of the year) provides a bit of a clue. Other articles have mentioned current years (the last one did), so my guess would be that it took less than a year for an article to go through the process.

Reflection: This is the last article in my study.

lq/volume-4-issue-4.txt · Last modified: 2017/02/07 09:03 by seanburns