Information Technology in Librarianship

New Critical Approaches

by Gloria J. Leckie, ed., John E. Buschman, Editors


A host of faculty and practitioners consider how and why information technology is vital to the future of the profession, as well as caveats against over/underreliance.

Print Flyer

November 2008

Libraries Unlimited

Pages 304
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Librarianship: Philosophy, Values, and Issues/Information and Society/Culture
  Information Systems and Technology/General

In the last 15 years, the ground - both in terms of technological advance and in the sophistication of analyses of technology - has shifted. At the same time, librarianship as a field has adopted a more skeptical perspective; libraries are feeling market pressure to adopt and use new innovations; and their librarians boast a greater awareness of the socio-cultural, economic, and ethical considerations of information and communications technologies. Within such a context, a fresh and critical analysis of the foundations and applications of technology in librarianship is long overdue.

Topic Centers

Introduction: Information Technologies and Libraries--Why Do We Need New Critical Approaches
Part One: Foundations
Chapter 1: Critical Theory of Technology: An Overview
Chapter 2: Surveillance and Technology: Contexts and Distinctions
Chapter 3: Cycles of Net Struggle, Lines of Net Flight
Chapter 4: A Quick Digital Fix? Changing Schools, Changing Literacies, Persistent Inequalities: A Critical, Contextual Analysis
Chapter 5: Theorizing the Impact of IT on Library-State Relations
Part Two: Applications
Chapter 6: The Prospects for an Information Science: The Current Absence of a Critical Perspecitive
Chapter 7: Librarianship and the Labor Process: Aspects of the Rationalization, Restructuring, and Intensification of Intellectual Work
Chapter 8: "Their Little Bit of Ground Slowly Squashed into Nothing": Technology, Gender and the Vanishing Librarian
Chapter 9: Children and Information Technology
Chapter 10: Open Source Software & Libraries
Chapter 11: Technologies of Social Regulation: An Examination of Library OPACs and Web Portals
Chapter 12: Libraries, Archives and Digital Preservation: A Critical Overview
Conclusion: Just How Critical Should Librarianship Be of Technology?
About the Editors and Contributors



"…The new edition, subtitled New Critical Approaches, examines six types of critiques, among them feminist technology analysis and technological utopia, in a series of chapters by prominent scholars. Required reading for anyone interested in critical theory relating to technology."—American Libraries

"Because this volume focuses on the issues and implications connected to technology, it will be accessible and useful for readers who are already familiar with critical discussions of technology as well as readers who are new to the conversation. . . . Because of the complexities and interconnections for each of the chapters, the volume as a whole is stronger than any of its individual parts. The individual sections and chapters, however, are also of considerable merit albeit on the more local level addressed in each. Any of the components, especially if supplemented by the introduction and conclusion, would be excellent reading for both students and professionals."—College & Research Libraries

"In this second edition of the 1993 classic, the authors present an insightful and thought-provoking sequel on information technology in librarianship from a critical perspective. . . it is in Part II that the practical application of information technology will be of interest to most readers."—Journal of Electronic Resources Librarianship

"...will interest librarians, as well as those in government, industry, research, and education."—New Library World

"Although it may appear that this book is aimed at academics and researchers in the field of information and library science, as well as practising librarians, anyone with an interest in the impact of technologies on society should find a number of relevant chapters and passages in this volume. An example is Chapter 9 about children and information technology that should be of interest to parents and teachers."—Library Hi Tech

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