Thursday, October 21, 2021

Yet Again, A Debate About the 'Librarian' Word

On November 4, 2021, members of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) are invited to a special meeting where a possible name change for the association will be on the agenda.

This is not the first library association to debate the matter of what we call ourselves. But the way, I am fine with "librarian" and "library". 

While researching the topic, I came across this article in Information Today, Librarians and Professional Labeling: What's in a Name?:

"At a recent professional meeting, I was dismayed to find myself witnessing yet another discussion on whether those present should call themselves “librarians.” The program that hosted this discussion opened with the observation that library spaces are shrinking in the post-pandemic world and the question of whether the participants might stop calling themselves librarians if they no longer work “in a [physical] library.” Everything I heard was a repetition of arguments I’ve heard over and over in the almost 50 years since I was working on my first professional degree (M.S., Drexel University, 1973–1975)."

"I’m sick of hearing debates about our professional labeling. The conversations usually generate more heat than light. Moreover, they distract us from the important questions we should be discussing and tasks we should be working on. With the hope of helping the profession move on, I offer the following brief historical survey and some fundamental premises for librarians who are making decisions about what professional label to adopt."

Earlier Library Boy posts on the issue include:


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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:54 pm


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