Crankypants

I’m turning into a cranky librarian.

I know there is a lot of information out there about how libraries are changing, how we’re not shushing patrons anymore, how the libraries are filled with joyous teens playing Guitar Hero and having a wonderful time.

Bleah.

There is a value in having a Quiet Space.  There is value in having a contemplative space. There is value in having a space where you can sit in a comfortable chair and just think.

We have some students that seem to understand this.  And then there are the students who don’t seem to have an “inside voice.” They are loud. Just in general conversation, they’re loud.

I find myself getting increasingly irritated with these types, and would dearly love to stride up to them and shush them.  I don’t, unless there’s a student taking an exam.

But boy, I really, really want to.

How do I create a contemplative study space without being the Crankypants Librarian?

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1 Comment

Filed under Academia, Libraries and Librarianship, Me and mine

One response to “Crankypants

  1. DBF

    Dear Librarians Everywhere:
    What is with this no shushing thing? Are you afraid that people might want to think in a library? Are you afraid that silence might mean that something thoughtful is going on? Is that the problem? Or do you think that if you let people talk and treat a library like the food court at the mall that you’ll get more visitors?
    I have a news flash: Libraries are not the mall.
    If you concede the specialness of library atmosphere, you will be doing the same thing that churches have done in becoming just ordinary secular places with secular music and nothing out of the ordinary. Libraries are sacred spaces, too. They are places for quiet contemplation, for study, for peaceful work. Rules like quiet are signals of respect for other people, and an external signal that this is a place for thinking, not visiting.
    If people want to chat they can go to a bar. Please, PLEASE shush people.
    Seriously.
    Sheesh.

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