The past in the future: a content analysis applying S. R. Ranganathan's five laws of library science to libraries and information services in young adult science fiction

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DuBoff, Bruce
Library and Information Science
thesis / dissertation description
S. R. Ranganathan's Five Laws of Library Science are considered the basis of modem library philosophy. They have remained after over seventy years as the seminal concepts by which other library science guidelines are judged. However, the world has changed dramatically since 1931, and these laws, along with Ranganathan's philosophy, may be in jeopardy of obsolescence.What has science fiction written about future libraries? Speculative library and information trends and issues like those discussed in science fiction literature are relevant not only for librarians, but for society as well as it wrestles with the issue of information overload.This study will portray results of a content analysis study focused on the appearance of libraries and/or information services in selected young adult science fiction novels. Objective analysis of the novels concerns the adherence or non-adherence of the libraries or information services incorporated in the source works to Ranganathan's five laws. Subjective analysis includes insights into the relationship between futuristic libraries and current automation practices; evidence that Ranganathan's five laws are still current; support for the proposition that libraries following Ranganathan's five laws and their associated principles are successful libraries; and recommendations for further study based on the results of this project.