|Published online: April 4, 2014||$US5.00|
In 1931, S. R. Ranganathan posed a theory that five basic principles should guide librarianship. Known as the “Five Laws of Library Science,” these laws remain a relevant part of today’s library science field and clearly guide current organizations and practices. Ranganathan’s “Five Laws of Library Science” easily fly below the daily radar and are often taken for granted; however, it is absolutely crucial that these guiding principles remain ever-present in library practices and goals as the field evolves. The consequences of ignoring Ranganathan’s five laws become frighteningly plausible in the fictional libraries of Umberto Eco’s historically-set novel, "The Name of the Rose," and Jorge Luis Borges’s futuristic short story, “The Library of Babel.” As each library fails in polar opposite fashions to adhere to each of Ranganathan’s laws, an ideal library model emerges, touching on issues of organization, cataloging, preservation, censorship, and adaptability. This paper serves as a reminder of the delicate balances within the field and the role a library should play in society, aided by Ranganathan’s theories.
|Keywords:||Ranganathan, Library Science, Literature|
Student, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota, USA
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