85 % of Pakistanis have never been to library in their entire lives. That was the heading of a post somebody shared on my Facebook page a few days ago. Because this subject is related to my field of study, I decided to do more in-depth research; I discovered some interesting facts. According to the latest Pakistan Gallup survey, citizens are not very eager to go to a library. I became curious and began to think about whether there are more countries than just Pakistan that have this problem.
In this fast-paced era of information and technology, video games are commonplace, a conventional form of entertainment that people of all ages and genders engage in. But even with the medium’s growing popularity, negative criticisms and opinions about the content, probability of addiction, and detrimental influences on behavior are abundant. Yes, there are games with graphic violence, sexual content, and questionable morality. It is entirely possible that a prolonged exposure with no set rules or restrictions can lead to the development of an unhealthy obsession (play in moderation!). There are individuals out there that find it difficult to distinguish fantasy from reality, and so impressionable that they think it’s okay to mimic inappropriate actions and behaviours depicted in fictional premises. But isn’t it unfair to label all video games as “bad” or “evil”? The examples above are extremes, not the norm.
In today’s Western society we may not pay much attention to censorship in the course of our daily routine, but it is a practice that has been exercised countless times ever since humanity’s existence. The reasons for banning a book during these modern times are various and deal mostly with matters related to racism, inappropriate sexual content, violence, political bias, and so on. But when did the act of banning books start? And why were books banned and still are being banned?
Librarians encounter various… interesting patrons throughout their careers. Some of these encounters can be terrifying, leaving us feeling like we’re not prepared to deal with our patrons. But, in the words of Marie Curie, “Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so we may fear less.”
When it comes to dealing with those patrons that seem a little off their rockers (you know, that patron who starts biting her hand and moaning every time she finds out The Great Book of Trains by Brian Hollingsworth has been taken out by another patron), it’s important to stay informed. Read up on the various medical disorders that could be affecting your patrons and research the wise advice of professionals and self-advocates on how to best approach these patrons.