The lamentable history of National Library disposals, Part 1: 1862-1965

Bill Direen surveys the intertwined history of New Zealand's parliamentary and national libraries, in this first of a two-part history, that goes some way to explaining the current crises facing the National Library. Between the well-intentioned throwing of 750 valued reference books into the sea in 1862, and the 1960s, disposals were not boasted of, … Continue reading The lamentable history of National Library disposals, Part 1: 1862-1965

Great libraries make great writers

Every great writer is a reader from an early age. In this article Christine Dann examines the vital importance of easy access to good libraries for New Zealand’s first two internationally acclaimed authors, and wonders if New Zealand will produce any more now that both easy access and good libraries are under threat. If you … Continue reading Great libraries make great writers

The truth about what is happening to our National Library

The National Library website currently displays a page about the Overseas Published Collection which purports to explain about the disposal "project". Unfortunately it contains factual errors and misleading statements. Here we set out to dispel the myths and explain what is really happening behind the glossy words. They state that they plan to "rehome" some … Continue reading The truth about what is happening to our National Library

Who takes care of the (book) caretakers?

Which statutory body advises the Minister about the National Library? Are they forthcoming about their meetings and their discussions? Or are they merely a committee that rubber stamps the requests of the management of the National Library, the institution they are meant to oversee? Publicly available documents suggest that governance of the National Library is … Continue reading Who takes care of the (book) caretakers?

A cultural and intellectual impoverishment

Dr Jonathan Lee, scholar of the Near East, writes about the National Library's book culling I am a British-born scholar and New Zealand citizen specializing in the social history of Afghanistan, Central Asia and the Indo-Iranian borderlands and in Islam and Muslim-Christian relations. My doctorate in Religious Studies is from the University of Leeds and … Continue reading A cultural and intellectual impoverishment

Beethoven is a New Zealander

Brian Easton writes about the Disposing of Our Heritage. The National Library is still disposing of books from the nation’s heritage. The Department of Internal Affairs juggernaut rolls on. Its briefing to the incoming minister says that its roles include ‘holding the nation and the Government's memory through the National Library of New Zealand and … Continue reading Beethoven is a New Zealander

New Zealand voices for books and libraries

New Zealand voices for books and libraries: a compilation “We believe that the issue of what kind of society New Zealand will become in the next decades is central to our role and existence. If many of the present controllers of our destiny had their way, New Zealand would soon become a sleazier version of … Continue reading New Zealand voices for books and libraries