The Library:

Old-fashioned Place or Sanctuary?

January 16, 2015  |  By Ioana Sdraila, Romania

The Library:

Nowadays we are utterly surrounded by technology, as it has penetrated every corner of our lives, and there seems to be no escape from it. People, especially teenagers, let themselves manipulated by media and, according to various surveys, they spend too much time on gadgets.

Talking about books, they used to be a getaway from the daily, hectic life. People used to enter a library and spend hours inside of it, searching for a good book. It seems like that exquisite pleasure has been replaced by e-books, which provide people with an effortless method of reading. It is an arguable subject due to the fact that the little gadget might store many books but it also brings some disadvantages which should be taken into consideration. Reading from an e-book causes physical and intelectual damage such as the loss of attention, bad eye sight, lack of concentration.

What place can be better than a library for a bookaholic? I guess the answer is obvious. People should notice the benefits offered by a library. They have piles of books, both new and old ones, which can be taken home for a few weeks. Usually, the central library has the newest books and bestsellers but also collection books, which do not have many copies..They are asking, in return, for a small, annual contribution, in order to register. Moreover, the big libraries have departments like reading rooms, providing the people with a friendly, quiet environment, a media library, a special collection department and cultural centres with books written in widely-known languages.

The biggest problem of a library, nowadays, must be its old-fashioned image. People associate it with a boring place because many of them are not attracted by reading and, more precisely, they are not attracted by reading traditional books. People used to be keen on obtaining an old book, craving the smell of a well-worn book, the weight of it in their hands.

No matter how outdated the libraries might seem to be, there are still many citizens, even teenagers, who often go to the library. Mara Theil, an 18 years old high-school student, being asked where she usually studies and does her homework, she says: ”I usually study at the library because I find that place really inspiring and attractive for such an activity.” In addition, she says that “the place just makes me learn a lot more easily easier and the time spent there is actually of a high quality”. When Mara was questioned about what she thinks of libraries being old-fashioned, she sincerely answered: ”I think it's an absurdity. The real, right way to gather information, to discover, to get educated is to read, read a lot; and I mean books with pages that you can turn over, not the popular e-books that do not have a high effect on your brain. The library is the most favourable environment to cultivate your intelligence and interests.”

After all, do you still think that libraries are not vibrant and thriving? There is nothing archaic or primitive about them. Libraries remain an essential part of any community and they can be definitely called “Home for souls”. As  T.S. Eliot said: “The very existence of libraries affords the best evidence that we may yet have hope for the future of man.” 

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