We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Temples of learning

Here are some superb photos of those symbols of human civilisation, libraries. As ever, the British Library blows me away.

(Hat tip: Stephen Hicks).

I am spending Christmas in a part of the world boasting some pretty fabulous architecture of its own. In the meantime, I want to wish readers a Happy Christmas and hopefully not too stressful 2009, whatever the economic situation brings.

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7 comments to Temples of learning

  • Corsair

    Lucky you! Malta’s a fabulous place.

  • Public Libraries are a two edged sword. Those that are state run have their contents dictated by their budget and the political whims of their masters. Better to have privately owned libraries which are open to the public where the contents are at the discretion of the owner than buildings full of books that no-one wants to read.

    Merry whatever, everyone.

  • RobtE

    Better to have privately owned libraries which are open to the public where the contents are at the discretion of the owner than buildings full of books that no-one wants to read.

    You mean like this wonderful place?

  • Jim A

    Public Libraries are a two edged sword. Those that are state run have their contents dictated by their budget and the political whims of their masters.

    Well not ALWAYS the case. The Library of Congress receives two copies of every book published in the U.S.. Until recently (1976?) this was one of the prequisites for authors to receive a government granted monopoly (copyright) on the reproduction of their works.

  • RobtE: Yes, exactly like that, but there should be more of them.

    Jim A: AFAIK the British Library has no such privilege, and your point was beside mine anyway. National libraries, like the BL and LoC are all well and good but what about the local libraries that everyone has access to? They don’t get given free copies of every book, I know this because my dad used to work for a company than made alot of money selling books to public libraries.

  • Laird

    I too had noticed that nearly all of there are government-owned facilities. Still, they are gorgeous places, and I am glad that they are being maintained and (for the most part) open to the public. I’m not sure I could do any actual work in any of them, though; I would be too distracted by the surroundings!

  • Clive

    “Here are some superb photos of those symbols of human civilisation, libraries. As ever, the British Library blows me away.”

    Thank you Johnathan for those wonderful images. I’m sure some would truly take my breath away.

    I tend to daydream and am often easily distracted so it’s possible that it would take me an epoch to finish a book in some of these places. One could eat a lot of flies admiring the beauty.
    I have only been in our own British Library which is indeed wonderful ( poss. fly free ).

    Best for 2009.