Some Day I’ll Be a Librarian

Flattering Feline Fashions
Friday Fiction: The Unchosen

Some Day I'll Be a LibrarianSome Day I’ll Be a Librarian
Splaver
1967

Submitter: This gem is still on-shelf at [University], where I attended library school. The writing is pretty good overall, but it was the text on page 16 that first had me howling — the kids at the library each *happen* to come across a wonderful book that just *happens* to be written by Sarah Splaver. What a coincidence!

The fact that the tech services librarians have personalities that are “quite different” from the public service staff — such as the “pleasant, enthusiastic” children’s librarian — made me imagine surly catalogers and scowling acquisitions staff hiding out in the back offices.

I was happy to see diversity in the images of this book! Given that it was published in 1967, I wasn’t expecting that. On the other hand, the chapter “Were Men Meant for Librarianship” emphasizes that men are especially wanted for TOP JOBS and administrative positions. ‘Cause none of the ladies are best suited for that, apparently.

The photograph that had me gaping in disbelief was the one featuring the music librarian… as she helps a patron who has a pipe in his mouth!

Holly: The kids in these pictures are about to retire from their librarian careers!

Books by Sarah Splaver

Storytime in Central Park

Whicih public does the public library serve

School librarian

Music librarian

male librarians

8 comments

  1. It seems to be a decent book for the time but it would not fly today because the book types librarians in somewhat unflattering ways. The only diversity I saw in the pages presented was an African-American, male librarian with African-American children.

    Librarians come in all shapes, sizes, colors and genders.

    We play in garage bands and sing in church choirs. Sometimes, a librarian may do both.

    Some librarians enjoy working needlepoint pictures. Some enjoy getting tattoos. There are those who do both.

    In the same way that a librarian rarely knows what a client needs without a reference interview, a client cannot know what a librarian can provide without a bit of conversation.

  2. My husband earned his MLIS in 1965. He was among the young men who had an “excellent opportunity” as a college (and later university) librarian, who did work “together with women” to “bring increased learning opportunities to these people.”

  3. While I certainly understand the desire for “weeding and some feng shui”, PLEASE, do not weed this title. Instead, transfer it to a non-circulating protected collection or to special collections. The title has historical value as it reflects/documents the institution’s professional library school.

    1. Well, yes! It does have archival value…if it were in my collection I’d pass it on to the state’s professional collection, etc. It wouldn’t stay on the shelves of a middle/high school library! But, Martha Wilson’s School Library Management, c1925, has been handed down from librarian to librarian at my school. What a treasure!

  4. Oh this book makes my heart happy. It’s a good snapshot of an American institution doing the most important job in America, “using taxes to provide free educational all members of the community.”. This was, and should still be always valued. Unfortunately it is not, my niece and nephew currently live in town that closed down their county libraries because they didn’t see the value. It truly is heartbreaking.
    The book is reflective of its time and that’s important too. Sometimes we need actual tangible proof that the world really was that way. I think for young people it can make it real in way that that other media might not. Imho

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