Thursday, January 17, 2019 | ePaper

Libraries for making an enlightened society

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Dr. Forqan Uddin Ahmed :
A library serves as the best source of knowledge both for the students and the teachers. It is a large collection of books. Among them, there are books on courses that are taught in different classes. There are books on extra-curricular subjects also. In the library, newspapers and periodicals are also available. The library caters to the taste of different people. Books are arranged in shelves neatly. There are library assistants who are also helpful for the readers. One head librarian looks after the library. So the readers don't have any problem in finding out the right book. There is also a reading room where silence prevails. One take also take books from the library for reading at home by submitting library card to the librarian.        
There was a time when the doctors used to go to the house of patients. Now it is the reverse. The patients stand in cue for treatment. Books do not go to the reader. The readers look for books once books were available to every houses of educated person. Now it is rare. Let us know how many libraries are there in Bangladesh for its population of 16 crore. There are as many as 71 govt. libraries. This is in average one people against twenty two thousand people. There are registered non-govt. 1200 libraries. Besides, we have 400 non-registered libraries. Now the ratio is 1:16 lacs. But the international standard is 1600/1700. To satisfy the standard and to meet our demand we must have one lac of libraries. In our country, we have eight types of libraries which serve our purposes. They are: Public library, University library, college/school library, Research library, Special library, Non-govt. library, family library. In our country, a social movement and renaissance is yet to be established except the Bishwaya Sahittya Kendro. With a view to making an enlightened man Prof. Abdullah Abu Syed started the movement in 1978. In every district its branches are functioning. In his old days, still he is struggling to increase the enlighten man, and intellectual society. This is indeed a good mission. He not only restricts his idea to it but also he had his initiative for mobile library. The main purpose of these initiatives is to make an enlighten nation.        
There are four major types of libraries: academic libraries serve colleges and universities. Public libraries serve cities and towns of all types. School libraries serve students from kindergarten to grade 1. There are special libraries which are used for specialized environments, such as hospitals, corporations, museums, the military, private business and the government. There are world famous libraries also such as Library of congress (Washington D.C, USA) which is essentially both the national library of the US and the country's oldest federal cultural institution. Boolean library (Oxford, UK) Established in 1602 as Oxford University's library, Bodleian is one of the oldest libraries in Europe. Reading room at the British Muses (London, England) which is located in the center of Museum's creating court. Some other famous libraries are- Yale University Breakneck Pare Book and Manuscript library, Varietal library, New York public library, library of Parliament, Canada, etc.
Over the last decades, scientific progress, has inspired not only major technological but most of the social and cultural changed as well. The information society of new quality has been developed. It could be characterized by the rapid growth of the amount and variety of information, development of the conception of information as a commodity, formation of knowledge and information industry, development of the information and communication technology, the impact of information and its technologies on all spheres of life including the nature of learning and work as well as on the style of everyday life. Today, libraries are not only about lending books. They are creative spaces, not only for individuals, but also for teams. In future, some technologies may be used for the betterment of the readers such as - library bookmark and guide, augmented reality app, book delivery drone, Digital interface for print books, mobile library center, Access to library via commonly used app etc.
As gateways to knowledge and culture, libraries play a fundamental role in society. The resources and services they offer create opportunities for bearing support literacy and education and help shape the new ideas and perspectives that are central to a creative and innovative society.
They also help ensure an authentic record of knowledge created and accumulated by past generations. In a world without libraries, it would be difficult to advance research and human knowledge or preserve the world's cumulative knowledge and heritage for future generations. Libraries represent different things to different people from a place where mothers can take toddlers to read their first stories and students can study, to a service allowing anyone to borrow a book, access the internal or do research.
Quite simply, libraries offer a means by which we can gain access to knowledge. Libraries are synonymous with education and offer countless learning opportunities that can fuel economic, social and cultural development. The inspiring story of William Kamkwamba from Malawi underlines the difference a library can make. Having borrowed a book about windmills from his local library, Mr. Kamkwamba learned how to build an energy-producing turbine for his village. On the strength of his experience he went on to study at a leading US university that one book not only changed his life; it also transformed the lives of those in his village community. Such stories explain why many countries are eager to ensure that libraries continue to provide access to knowledge, learning and ideas.
In addition to lending books, libraries are also involved in copying materials for research or private study purposes. Students cannot afford to buy every book, or pay for every television broadcast or journal they need to access for their studies. They therefore rely on the services of a library. Recognizing the cultural importance of sharing, Mahatma Gandhi said that, "no culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive." The stimuli's to share and reuse information knowledge comes in many guises.
There are some characteristics by which a reader is identified as a quality reader. Quality readers summarize as they read. They make and revise predictions. They ask questions, visualize and synthesize. Moreover, Good readers make connections as they read. They also determine important ideas. We should read every day for mental stimulation, Stress reduction, knowledge, Vocabulary expansion, Memory improvement. Again Stronger analytical thinking skills, improved focus and concentration and Better writing skills are developed. Besides, tranquility and free entertainment are also ensured by reading.

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