Who we are
The Working Group of Critical Librarians exists since 1988, our members work in all kinds of scientific, public and special libraries or library schools in West- and East-Germany. Akribie is not a registered organisation but rather a forum for candid discussion and joint action, with the goal of finding new, critical forms and possibilities for library work. When accepting this purpose the group is open to everyone. To be „critical" means for us: encouraging to think about the usual or prescribted, reflecting about the practical work which is done in the libraries of the Federal Republic.
What we want
In contrary to most of the German library employees we think that the present social situation and its development should be reflected by the libraries and be the basis of their work. We favor activities of the libraries for the free access to information for all kind of groups and minorities. We are opposing the massive restrictions of this free access through political conditions like the missing legal and financial support of the scientific and public libraries in Germany and the preference for patrons which are able and willing to pay for the growing charges. We support democratic structures within the libraries and ask for strengthening the individual responsabiblity of the library employees. We want the participation of library users in all aspects of substantive decision-making in library work.
Akribie thinks that library work should not be restricted to library technology and perfect management but should be orientated at the social duties of the libraries.
What we do
Akribie is organizing two or three times a year meetings where we discuss general questions and plan actual activities. These meetings serve also the exchange of news and further vocational training, with occasional visits or lectures by invited speakers or workshops for special subjects. The venue, subject and shape of the meetings are determined by the participants. Each member of Akribie can decide freely how much he/she will contribute to the activities and the costs of our group. For communication between the meetings there is a newsletter and the homepage. Every year Akribie is attending library meetings and congresses, offering in the last ten years information booths and discussion forums on a wide range of subjects. The topic of our meeting on the congress of librarians an documentalists March 2000 in Leipzig was the librarians ethic or ethical principles in library work.