Library Perfidy

Having praised Houghton yesterday, today I damn Widener.

Why, oh why, does the country’s second largest research library (after the Library of Congress) completely shut down from August 20 (the end of summer school) until September 19 (the start of fall classes)? Well, not completely: I can still work here, but the library is open only 9-5 Mondays through Saturdays. No other library on campus is open and available for hard-working graduate students after 5pm on any day. To add insult to injury, there are no reference services on Saturdays. I just popped down to Loker Reference Room on a writing break, thinking I would beg the CD-ROM version of the Dictionary of National Biography from the reference librarians to look up a growing list of Virginia ministers. I was going to establish some biographical files before returning to Chapter Three. Alas, no reference services means just that: no reference services. And therefore, no CD-ROM of the DNB.

How can anyone get work done like this?

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