3.00 FYI France: Ejournal and archive

by Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us

May 15, 2006 issue. This file presents an archive copy of the issue of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which was distributed via email on May 15, 2006.

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Versions of the following have appeared online regularly, since 1992, as a feature of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which is distributed for free via email every month except August. Ejournal subscriptions may be obtained via email request to: kessler@well.sf.ca.us

Here this file is one of a number made available -- hopefully attractively, all in one place, and relevant to libraries and online digital information work in France and Europe -- as part of FYI France (sm)(tm), an online service to which anyone can subscribe for 12 months by postal mailing a check for US $45, payable to Jack Kessler, to PO Box 460668, San Francisco, California, USA 94146 (site licenses also are available): please write your email address on the front of your check. And you can pay via PayPal, on the FYI France homepage:


Please email suggestions for improvements to me at kessler@well.sf.ca.us




Congratulations to the BBF, on its 50th birthday!


They say that the Bulletin des Bibliothèques de France, le BBF, was born on this day 50 years ago -- May 15, 1956 -- and a fête is under way today at the BnF in Paris to celebrate the event:


So, congratulations, vous tous! The BBF makes for great reading: good presentation, elegant format, fascinating subjects -- a star among library journals, and not just for the French.

I thought it might be interesting here to explore a few among the many, worldwide, who read the BBF regularly nowadays: among (per WorldCat) the subscribers --


* The University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus, Sistema de Bibliotecas, Puerto Rico

[Europeans always have difficulty, in my experience, imagining a multi-cultural and particularly a multi-lingual "United States". Here, then, is a part of the USA which is both. Their main website in English even warns, in fact, "For a complete information about our campus, please visit our Spanish Version page. Most links in this page refer to the Spanish..."

Other places in the US which rapidly are becoming multi-cultural and multi-lingual include the entire state of Texas, most of our large US cities wherever they are located, and my own not-small state of Calfornia.

The BBF offers a glimpse to all of us, here, of the differences and complexities of the broad world outside of the narrowly anglophone one we once -- for a while, anyway -- had here in the US. It is a promising picture, especially for those of us at times not feeling comfortably part of that older tradition.

Founded in 1903, with 173 students, the University of Puerto Rico in its entirety now involves -- mostly in Spanish -- 5200 professors, 14,000 employees, and over 70,000 students...]


* The National Central Library, Taiwan

[Another BBF subscriber... also not English-medium...]


* The University of Adelaide, South Australia

[Yet another far-flung BBF set of readers -- this time literally at "The Antipodes", as the Aussies so proudly say, sometimes -- my granddad was an Aussie, and he spent a lifetime touring the wide world he thought he hadn't had "at 'ome down unda". Yet several times and in his old age he went back. He'd have had a better time of it if he'd been able to keep contact more easily: nowadays the Internet at least gives us that -- wandering Aussies in London check in at their library in Adelaide, wandering French scholars look up a reference at the BMLyon when they're in Perth, librarians in all three places read the BBF.

Among the libraries of the globe, those of the "antipodean" Australians are among the greatest beneficiaries of online digital communication: they're a long, long, way away, by plane or boat. Nowadays, though, more and more, they are connected to France and to other places, and France and other places are connected, daily and even continuously, to them...]


* Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, South Africa

[And this is the newest challenge, to us all: a faraway place I've never been, as too many of us haven't, and yet a place we all ought to visit -- a home of magical thinking and incredible ideas, such as their "Truth & Reconciliation" commissions -- and a home of terrible problems, such as AIDS, which will redound to the discredit of the entire world if we neglect them, and will require the close cooperation of the entire world if they are to be addressed and resolved -- and a home of great achievements, and of genuine modern heroes, such as Nelson Mandela.

And they read the BBF... The "outside world" grows closer and closer together: for South Africa, for France, for all of us...]

[Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University has over 20,000 students, now... The South African literacy rate ("age 15 and over can read and write") recently has been 86.4% (male 87%, female 85.7%), and it has been getting better and better...]


A General & Concluding Note:

All of the above represents a world much-changed, since the BBF began back in 1956: particularly in the eyes of those of us who personally remember 1950s education -- the Bad Old Days, back when "Blacks", pretty much anywhere, did not attend school at all or attended sub-standard schools, and even "Women" did not attend universities... in spite of myopic daily headlines which try to paint a different picture, the world has become a better place...

And all four of the very-varied list above now read the BBF!

Journals which "scale up" to the international & trans-national & globalizing world pull us all together.

So again, BBF, Happy Birthday!


Jack Kessler






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Last update: July 16, 2008