Daily Archives: February 15, 2008

Would the Central Children’s Room and Teen Central Go There?

 We can only hope.   Here’s the scoop from Maud Newton:

The New York Public Library is gearing up for some big changes. A confidential source reports that plans are afoot to install a circulating central library in the flagship Fifth Avenue branch, which currently is just a research library and exhibitions site.

According to the source, new space beneath Bryant Park, and improvements in digital technology, will enable the NYPL to free up the stacks below the Rose Main Reading Room on the west side of the building and to make the space open to the public for the first time.


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The Banality of Overuse

Meanwhile, we should all of us perhaps take care when we speak of the problem of evil. For there is more than one sort of banality. There is the notorious banality of which Arendt spoke —the unsettling, normal, neighborly, everyday evil in humans. But there is another banality: the banality of overuse—the flattening, desensitizing effect of seeing or saying or thinking the same thing too many times until we have numbed our audience and rendered them immune to the evil we are describing. And that is the banality— or “banalization”—that we face today.

This is Tony Judt (a very controversial scholar, if you don’t already know) on “The ‘Problem of Evil’ in Postwar Europe” in The New York Review of Books.” Provocative and worthwhile reading.

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