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System Dreams: Public Libraries and the Politics of Regional Library Service in Allegheny County, 1935-1989

Widdersheim, Michael M. (2015) System Dreams: Public Libraries and the Politics of Regional Library Service in Allegheny County, 1935-1989. In: Pennsylvania Library Association Annual Conference, 04 October 2015 - 07 October 2015, State College, Pennsylvania, USA.

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Abstract

Large-scale coordination of infrastructure is a politically contentious issue in Pittsburgh due to the region’s corrugated topography and fractured governmental landscape. In the early 1990s, however, public libraries in the region coalesced into a countywide unit, providing exemplary social services at scale. The purpose of this study is to understand the historical trajectory of this amalgamation. Primary sources were collected from Heinz History Center Detre Library and Archives, Oliver Special Collections Room at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP), and the University of Pittsburgh Archives Service Center. Data was then analyzed according to a public sphere theory proposed by Habermas (1996). In this model, communicative power flows to legislative bodies where it is transformed into administrative power through law, leading to system-level developments. In this study, communicative power and its resulting effects during five periods of activity are identified and explained. This study contributes to a political understanding of infrastructural development.


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Details

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Widdersheim, Michael M.mmw84@pitt.eduMMW84
Date: 6 October 2015
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Event Title: Pennsylvania Library Association Annual Conference
Event Dates: 04 October 2015 - 07 October 2015
Event Type: Conference
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Information Sciences > Library and Information Science
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 03 Nov 2015 16:44
Last Modified: 25 Aug 2017 04:59
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/26293

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