Bibliothekare als Schädlinge

Noch ein Zitat aus der soeben genannten Rezension des Buchs von Basbane: Mr. Basbanes is also interested in the current deplorable state of library acquisition and especially de-accession, and the second half of his book is set in modern times, dealing with newer forms of book assassination. Nicholson Bakerâ??s acidic attack, in his book Double Fold, on the concept of library de-accession, which targeted in particular the San Francisco Public Library, is more gently echoed here. Mr. Basbanes cites, with an engaging mix of incredulity and despair, the current quest by libraries for more ready cash, and their lack of historical context and a full understanding of the cultural and historical worth of their holdings. (Amazon.comâ??s recent announcement that it would help the British Library sell off 2.5 million unwanted books from its collection proves his point.) He weighs the pros and cons of electronic publishing and record retention and covers, in an amiably inquisitive way, scholarsâ?? and professional librariansâ?? claims about the benefits and liabilities to books of current technological advances. Anyone who laments the passing of real card catalogs, which have been replaced by (often poorly functioning) electronic systems, will find in the second half of A Splendor of Letters an appalling confirmation of their fears.