In the course of working on a project to promote my library, I have been looking for quotes about libraries.
I guess I took for granted that it'd be easy to find really positive quotes, about why libraries are important, how people benefit from using their library, etc. And it was, but what surprised me were a few not-so-positive library quotes.
People who want to understand democracy should spend less time in the library with Aristotle and more time on the buses and in the subway.
If you file your waste-paper basket for 50 years, you have a public library.
A library is thought in cold storage.
There is nowhere in the world were sleep is so deep as in the libraries of the House of Commons.
-Henry "Chips" Channon
Not that my frail ego was shattered by this discovery, but it was surprising. There's a lot of cheerleading that goes on within librarianship (such as American Libraries' "How the World See Us" section), and I guess I've been so insulated by this that anything to the contrary was shocking.
But after the initial shock wore off, I could see the humor (and accuracy) in them, too.
And in case you're looking for more quotes, here's a few websites with library-related quotations:
Certainly not an exhaustive list, but they have a lot to pick from. I think my favorite of the moment is:
A truly great library contains something in it to offend everyone.
- Jo Godwin