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Our Enduring Values Revisited: Librarianship in an Ever-Changing World
Michael Gorman
Item Number: 978-0-8389-1300-0
Publisher: ALA Editions
Price: $45.00
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256 pages
6" x 9"
ISBN-13: 978-0-8389-1300-0
Year Published: 2015
AP Categories: A, C, I, T

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In the almost 15 years since Our Enduring Values was published, there has been a sea change in the way much of the world thinks about and uses libraries. Young librarians and seasoned LIS professionals alike are experiencing increasing pressure to adjust to new economic, societal, and technological demands amidst the often-dire rhetoric currently surrounding the future of our institutions. In this stirring manifesto, public intellectual, librarian, and philosopher Gorman addresses head on the “existential panic” among library professionals caused by the radical shift in how libraries are viewed. He reconnects readers with the core values that continue to inspire generations of library professionals and scholars—while making the case that these values are doubly crucial to hold on to in the brave new shifting world of librarianship. Destined to become another classic of library literature, this book explores such contemporary issues as
  • The growing emphasis of the library as a cultural institution, placing libraries within their cultural context as gathering places for learning, access to information, and community
  • The impact of technological innovations on core values such as access and stewardship
  • Library places and spaces of the future
  • How the mass digitization of books, archives, and other materials affects the purpose and function of libraries
  • Intellectual freedom and privacy in the era of the PATRIOT Act, Wikileaks, and Edward Snowden
  • The role of libraries as both champions and facilitators of social justice
Inspirational yet clear-sighted, Gorman emphatically reaffirms the importance of libraries and librarians while proposing a path for future survival and growth.
Table of Contents


Chapter One

Chapter Two
History and Philosophy

Chapter Three

Chapter Four
Library as Place

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven
Intellectual Freedom

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine
Literacy and Learning

Chapter Ten
Equity of Access

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen
The Greater Good

Chapter Fourteen
Keeping Faith

About the Author

Michael Gorman, the former dean of library services at the Henry Madden Library, California State University, Fresno, served as president of the American Library Association in 2005–2006. He was the first editor of the Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, Second Edition (1978), and of the 1988 revision of that work. He is the author of numerous books, including Our Enduring Values (2000), the winner of ALA’s Highsmith Award in 2001 for the best book on librarianship, and the memoir Broken Pieces: A Library Life, 1941-1978. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Margaret Mann Citation in 1979 and the Melvil Dewey Medal in 1992.
Praise for Our Enduring Values Revisited

“This book is a useful tool for anyone trying to make the case for why libraries will not only endure, but take on an even more important role in the future. With strong opinions and views, Michael Gorman urges us to take a much needed pause and reflect on why libraries matter. His words renew our faith as a profession, creating excitement and giving strength to our convictions, and will be quoted for years to come.”  
— Carla Hayden, Chief Executive Officer, Enoch Pratt Free Library, and former ALA President 

“Michael Gorman is one of the giants of the last half century in the library field. At a time when so much current library literature is produced only in the light of narrow flashlight beams pointed exclusively at the Internet, Gorman’s book is a bright humanistic lamp that illuminates the entire field not only in its present state, but in relation to its noblest traditions and best prospects for promoting the greater good of our whole society.”
— Thomas Mann, Author, The Oxford Guide to Library Research

“An impressively presented compendium of original scholarship that is as informed and informative as it is thoughtful and thought-provoking ... should be required reading by all students of library science, as well as both novice and seasoned libraries.”  
— Reviewer's Bookwatch

"Sure to cause a great amount of introspection ... a must-have for all librarians, from all areas."

”Present[s] much to contemplate on the values librarians attempt to uphold. His views are not black and white; rather he delights in exploring the areas of nuanced decision-making in libraries … Highly recommended for circulating and professional collections in all libraries."

”Rather than using each value for the purpose of self-examination, he transforms them into specific rallying points for those who work in libraries in relation to the communities they serve. Moreover, these calls for advocacy are neither hierarchically driven, nor should they wait for the ‘usual suspects’ of allies to meet and incorporate them into their agendas. Gorman encourages librarians, support staff, administrators, assistants, pages, and volunteers to tell their own stories about the value of libraries … should be required reading for all library workers who have made this field their career and also library school students on the verge of starting their own careers. This is a work that holds steadfast in reinforcing the values that are important to the community of libraries, values that become part of the core consciousness of library workers."
— Technical Services Quarterly

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