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The issue desk: an ethnography of participation, engagement and social life in an everyday public library

Bridges, Ed 2010. The issue desk: an ethnography of participation, engagement and social life in an everyday public library. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.

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Abstract

The thesis focuses on four main areas of interest. Through ethnographic description and analysis, the research explored those elements of the public library which account for its 'libraryness'; the inherent appeal of the service which makes it an attractive and valued social space for those who frequent it. The second area centres round the ways the library is organised and used, and the techniques by which its success is judged. This enables an exploration of what counts as library provision and the ways in which, as a public policy arena, the library is made accountable and auditable. The third area is the library as a public and community space; the ways a branch library is used for social interaction and how these account, in part, for the library service's appeal as a space for participation and engagement. Finally, the research reflects on contemporary policy debates in the library service, specifically how the service uses and promotes itself and its services, and the tensions between (and meanings of) educational, recreational and cultural uses of the public library.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z719 Libraries (General)
Funders: ERSC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2018 21:54
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/55508

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