In this Book

summary
For well over one hundred years, libraries open to the public have played a crucial part in fostering in Americans the skills and habits of reading and writing, by routinely providing access to standard forms of print: informational genres such as newspapers, pamphlets, textbooks, and other reference books, and literary genres including poetry, plays, and novels. Public libraries continue to have an extraordinary impact; in the early twenty-first century, the American Library Association reports that there are more public library branches than McDonald's restaurants in the United States. Much has been written about libraries from professional and managerial points of view, but less so from the perspectives of those most intimately involved—patrons and librarians.
            Drawing on circulation records, patron reviews, and other archived materials, Libraries and the Reading Public in Twentieth-Century America underscores the evolving roles that libraries have played in the lives of American readers. Each essay in this collection examines a historical circumstance related to reading in libraries. The essays are organized in sections on methods of researching the history of reading in libraries; immigrants and localities; censorship issues; and the role of libraries in providing access to alternative, nonmainstream publications. The volume shows public libraries as living spaces where individuals and groups with diverse backgrounds, needs, and desires encountered and used a great variety of texts, images, and other media throughout the twentieth century.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-1
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. 2-5
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. vii-2
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  1. Introduction - Christine Pawley
  2. pp. 3-20
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  1. Part 1: Methods and Evidence
  2. pp. 21-22
  1. Community Places and Reading Spaces: Main Street Public Library in the Rural Heartland, 1876–1956
  2. pp. 23-39
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  1. Reading Library Records: Constructing and Using the What Middletown Read Database
  2. pp. 40-63
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  1. “Story Develops Badly, Could Not Finish”: Member Book Reviews at the Boston Athenæum in the 1920s
  2. pp. 64-77
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  1. “A Search for Better Ways into the Future”: The Library of Congress and Its Users in the Interwar Period
  2. pp. 78-94
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  1. Part 2: Public Libraries, Readers, and Localities
  2. pp. 95-96
  1. Going to “America”: Italian Neighborhoods and the Newark Free Public Library, 1900–1920
  2. pp. 97-110
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  1. “A Liberal and Dignified Approach”: The John Toman Branch of the Chicago Public Library and the Making of Americans, 1927–1940
  2. pp. 111-128
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  1. Counter Culture: The World as Viewed from Inside the Indianapolis Public Library, 1944–1956
  2. pp. 129-148
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  1. Part 3: Intellectual Freedom
  2. pp. 149-150
  1. Censorship in the Heartland: Eastern Iowa Libraries during World War I
  2. pp. 151-167
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  1. Locating the Library in the Nonlibrary Censorship of the 1950s: Ideological Negotiations in the Professional Record
  2. pp. 168-184
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  1. “Is Your Public Library Family Friendly?” Libraries as a Site of Conservative Activism, 1992–2002
  2. pp. 185-199
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  1. The Challengers of West Bend: The Library as a Community Institution
  2. pp. 200-214
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  1. Part 4: Librarians and the Alternative Press
  2. pp. 215-216
  1. Meta-Radicalism: The Alternative Press by and for Activist Librarians
  2. pp. 217-236
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  1. From the Underground to the Stacks and Beyond: Girl Zines, Zine Librarians, and the Importance of Itineraries through Print Culture
  2. pp. 237-260
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. 261-264
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 265-282
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  1. Further Reading
  2. pp. 292-292
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780299293239
Print ISBN
9780299293246
MARC Record
OCLC
867740514
Pages
256
Launched on MUSE
2013-10-21
Language
English
Open Access
N
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