Navigating the Mainstream: Key to Survival

BETTY G. BENGTSON

Abstract

My assignment is to give you an academic library director’s view of special collections. Should special collections be in the mainstream or on the margin of a university library’s programs and priorities?


In my view, special collections in a research library must be in the mainstream. As collections become more homogenized because of serials cancellations and decreased monographic purchases, it is in our special collections that the distinctiveness of our research libraries will be maintained. Research libraries have an obligation through our special collections to collect and preserve some part of our intellectual heritage.


But I also think that because . . .

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