NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ931263
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 147
ISSN: ISSN-0024-2519
Tourist Attraction: The Moore Library of Lexington, Michigan, 1903-1953
Wiegand, Wayne A.
Library Quarterly, v81 n3 p251-276 Jul 2011
This essay challenges traditional assumptions about the small-town American public library and the roles it has played in its community. Conventional thinking and professional rhetoric grounded on a "user in the life of the library" perspective identifies the public library as a neutral agency "essential to democracy" that guards against censorship and makes vital information accessible to all. From a "library in the life of the user" perspective, however, this essay argues that a particular small-town public library during a particular time period was indeed essential to its local community, but instead of supplying vital information "essential to democracy," it functioned primarily as an active agency peacefully mediating local cultural and literary values, supplying patron-driven fictional media, and providing public space--all of which over the generations enabled its host community to weave a socially harmonious fabric that its public library helped craft and then put on public display. (Contains 3 footnotes.)
University of Chicago Press. Journals Division, P.O. Box 37005, Chicago, IL 60637. Tel: 877-705-188; Tel: 773-753-3347; Fax: 877-705-1879; Fax: 773-753-0811; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Media Staff
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan