On the reasons behind
Critical notes (12)
We know (more or less) the "what": what do librarians do. Although sometimes that is dictated by some superior (and usually invisible, and totally library-unrelated) policy-maker.
We know (quite well) the "how": how we do whatever we do. Those are the techniques, methods and tools filling the 90% of LIS schools' curricula all around the world.
We assume the "who". And I say "we assume" because we generally do not have too much time to know as well as we should those "who" we work for/with. Or we do not care to know them.
But we are unclear (or completely ignorant) about the "why" and the "what for". And no, the answer is not in our institutional policies, in the trendy LIS handbook, in a certain IFLA manifesto, in a particular ALA guideline, or in the words of the enlightened LIS guru on duty.
We are not always clear about why and what we work for. We do not always know our reasons, our motives, our ultimate goals: those that should "move" us, push us into action, make us fall in love with our profession, get ourselves up every morning with a new idea. Those that should make us cry and laugh. Those without which we feel a little empty — an emptiness we try to fill (usually unsuccessfully) in this congress, in that update seminar, reading this magazine, or learning that new technology.
There is much to discuss. Much to discover, to learn and unlearn. Much to correct, and so much to propose. And much to think about. Because, as Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano put it in "Los hijos de los días" (2012), "free are those who think, not those who comply".
What are we waiting for?
Note belonging to the series Critical notes.
About the post
Text: Edgardo Civallero.
Picture: The Perfect System (link).