Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thursday Thoughts...

A public library is the most democratic thing in the world. What can be found there has undone dictators and tyrants: demagogues can persecute writers and tell them what to write as much as they like, but they cannot vanish what has been written in the past, though they try often enough. People who love literature have at least part of their minds immune from indoctrination. If you read, you can learn to think for yourself. 

Doris Lessing

I love that Doris Lessing recognises that a love of literature doesn't totally immunise you from possible indoctrination!  I guess we are all vulnerable to the odd bit of illogical brain washing here and there, but I also love that she reminds us that reading means you learn to think and question for yourself, leaving you less vulnerable to the indcotrinators.

Public libraries are truly the foundation stones of democracy. They safeguard and protect and retain for generations, the words of truth spoken over centuries. They make accessible to all the writings and thinking of learned people and don't discriminate in making information available.

They are also usually affordable - to borrow, request or order books.  If you have the time, the public library system can help you find most anything. When I think of the things I would go to the barricades for,  protecting or saving public libraries would be one of them!

Maleny Branch Library, 2011 


  1. I am known by the folk at my university library as 'the woman with all the books' - and they nothing of my collections in the shed! I'm just such a huge borrower of library books (I swear the only thing more delicious than a public library is a UNIVERSITY LIBRARY - and for me that means a library that's available in my home 24hr a day 7 days a week... I usually joke that I'm only doing HDR so that I can still access the uni library!)

    barricades? - gosh I'd move in with the gun ships!

  2. I'll vote for you!! There's a current move to close many libraries here, both in cities and remote areas where they are an absolute lifeline. It has aroused a lot of people protests, including from people who would never have dreamt of sit ins, so I hope the powers that be got the message.

  3. Amen to libraries and all that they represent and do for the world!!! What a charming library you have there...

  4. I'm with you on this one, Fiona!

  5. Yep, to the barricades! I'll join you there.

  6. Yes, libraries are a treasure!!

  7. the one thing i missed when i left home was the wonderful intimate library. and nowadays it's housed in a new building probably far better, but not the colonial american building with the lovely name of "the long and the short house". sigh. i discovered wuthering heights and jane eyre there, as well as marguerite henry and the hardy boys.
    my friends at winged camel matalworks make some public library jewelry and clocks!

  8. Hi all - so good to see such support for the public libraries and all that they offer. So many treasures, so much learning, so much access to the world for us all.

    Annie - if you need petitions signed we'll sign! I just don't understand how governments can think that this is a one-off cut that won't impact down the track - of course it will! If we don't educate people we'll never grow and improve - and all the adult ed that Libraries do is amazing. Fiona - step off the soap box now.

    Velma - I'm off to check out the library art!


I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.