Information literacy and cultural heritage: developing a model for lifelong learning by Kim Baker

  • Peter Underwood Journal Manager (Academic): South African Journal of Libraries and Information Science & Director of Client Services, Library and Information Service, Stellenbosch University


Do we think about the nature of our profession and its relations with the allied professions of archivist and museum curator? Perhaps, in those first lectures in our course of professional education we did, prompted by a list of the activities of each, and perhaps we concluded that there are substantial differences in approach. Kim Baker, in this well-written and fascinating book, challenges us to think further about this certainty and also suggests that many of our assumptions about the neutrality of our professional work may be considered mistaken.Baker is signalling that, whilst the three professions may be considered to be concerned with cultural heritage, there is by no means a shared understanding, or the use of similar approaches to providing easy and universal access to the records, media and material that constitutes our individual and collective memories. Librarians certainly have strong roles to play but do they yet understand the issues? In an attempt at rationalising the differences and exploring the roles, this book proposes a more generic approach to the design of information literacy that assumes a convergence of museums, archives and libraries and comprehends a broader understanding of cultural heritage and how lifelong learning should be facilitated.
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