Libraries and Archives

Libraries and Archives

A Comparative Study

1st Edition - June 22, 2012

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  • Author: Tomas Lidman
  • eBook ISBN: 9781780633121

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Libraries and Archives analyses the facts and arguments behind an increasing debate as to what extent libraries and archives are fulfilling the same missions. Despite the fact that they have different legal statuses, legal frameworks, and the work-flow looks very different, some politicians and bureaucrats think that there is much to gain if the two institutions work closely together or even merge. To understand the present situation it is important to have an understanding of the role of libraries and archives and their shared history. Therefore the development up to the present day is analysed in the first chapters of the book. The book stimulates debate and brings forth valuable facts about the topic. The main focus is on national libraries and national and regional archives from an international point of view.

Key Features

  • Offers a simple but comprehensive background to explain key issues behind the current debate
  • Provides librarians and archivists with arguments
  • The author has more than 40 years experience on the national and international archive and library scene


Practitioners and students of Library and Information Science and Archive Science

Table of Contents

  • List of figures

    List of abbreviations



    About the author

    Chapter 1: Introduction

    Chapter 2: Pre-historic times


    Ebla – archive or library?

    Alexandria – library or archive?

    Summary and reflections

    Chapter 3: National libraries and archives from early modern times to 1900


    The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Europe

    Founding of the institution – archives

    Libraries and legal deposit

    Summary and reflections on the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries

    The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries – fundamental changes


    Cataloguing, or how to describe the physical objects?

    Summary and reflections on the nineteenth century

    Chapter 4: Twentieth-century libraries



    The transformation of library infrastructures

    The national bibliography as core activity

    The indispensible quality of union catalogues

    The content of legislation and its impact and challenges

    The New Age – meeting challenges and incorporating new technologies

    Chapter 5: Twentieth-century archives



    Legal support

    Problems and possibilities with standardisation

    Appraisal – challenging, but necessary

    Summary and conclusion

    Chapter 6: What’s in store?



    The digital crossroads

    Final words



Product details

  • No. of pages: 140
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Chandos Publishing 2012
  • Published: June 22, 2012
  • Imprint: Chandos Publishing
  • eBook ISBN: 9781780633121

About the Author

Tomas Lidman

Dr. Tomas Lidman is currently leading a National Committee on Literature at the Ministry of Culture in Sweden. Until 2010 he was a national archivist in Sweden, and prior to this he was University Librarian in Stockholm. Dr. Lidman has overseen a variety of endeavours including project-leader in EU, IFLA, UNESCO, and Vice President of ICA (2005-2009). Since 2003 he has held the Presidency of the Royal Institute of Fine Arts in Stockholm and between 1995 and 2003 he was a national librarian. He took his PhD in History in 1979 and has written several books in History, Librarianship and Library history. In 2008 he wrote Scientific Libraries: Past development and future changes, for Chandos.

Affiliations and Expertise

Ministry of Culture, Sweden

Ratings and Reviews

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  • EmmaHagström M. Sun Sep 01 2019

    Libraries and Archives

    Gives a general overview, however, from a quite traditional perspective.