Episode Ten: International Libraries

World map blank without borders

Topic of the Week:
International Libraries

  • There are so many libraries all over the place, we want to bring you a few you might not know about yet
  • We will gush over a couple we have visited; then look at some other interesting libraries. There are thousands of libraries we could be looking at, so we picked some that are interesting right now, though not selected as representatives of their region.
  • We will revisit this topic again (probably multiple times!); so send us some of your favorites, or you are interested in hearing about in an upcoming episode

North America

It’s easy to see the modern style in this library, and all the excellent resources they have available! Study rooms, computers, lots of places to sit and read, book displays, and plenty of natural light.


  • Also in Quebec City is the Morrin Center, which houses a library with English materials as well as the Literary and Historical Society of Quebec.
  • You can see this historic building has lots of materials to choose from, as well as a cozy vintage feel inside!


Bologna, Biblioteca Salaborsa

Photo from the website about the tours under the library


Image result for Ethiopian National Library

  • Ethiopian National Library (You can translate the site into English by clicking a button at the top. This is often available on international websites – look for “English” or a British or United States flag to click, and you can get at least some of the site translated. Good to think about this in your own library – what other languages are available to browse your website?)
  • The Ethiopian National Archives and Library Agency is a governmental body established by proclamation No.179/1999 as a legal frame work and a nation-wide level of responsibilities. It was set up in 1943 with the name public library- wemezekirThe Agency has been delivering lots of services such as research and study services, reading services, training services, micro film reading services audio, audio-video recording services and consultancy services particularly to the researchers, scholars, academicians, writers and the public at large to create information informed society.


Middle East




Ancient library at Alexandria






Modern library at Alexandria



    • Library at Alexandria in Egypt (Bibliotheca  Alexandrina)
    • Geographically Africa; culturally this was defined as Middle East in the library materials we read, so we are leaving it there for this episode
    • “The Library of Alexandria was reborn in October 2002 to reclaim the mantle of its ancient namesake. It is not just an extraordinarily beautiful building; it is also a vast complex where the arts, history, philosophy, and science come together. Moreover, the myriad activities it offers have made it a place for open discussion, dialogue, and understanding.”


South America

Biblioteca nacional rio janeiro

  • The National Library of Brazil (Biblioteca Nacional)
  • ” It is the largest library in Latin America and the 7th largest in the world, its collections include about 9 million items.[1] It organized the first library science courses in Latin America and its staff has led the modernization of library services, including the development of online databases
  • The Brazilian National Library (BN) is the responsible agency for the governmental politics execution of capture, storage, preservation and diffusion of the Country’s intellectual production. With more than 200 years of history, it is the oldest Brazilian cultural institution.
  • It has a heritage of approximately 9 million items and, therefore, was considered by UNESCO (Organization of United Nations for the Education, Science and Culture) as one of the main national libraries in the world. To guarantee the maintenance of this immense set of works, BN has restoration and conservation of paper laboratories, binding workshop, centers of microfilming, photograph and digitization.”



  • We are slightly cheating here, because this is not actually in Antarctica; but the focus of the library is all about the polar regions, with a lot of great material and information
  • The British Antarctica Survey Library

    The BAS Library holds a collection of around 9,000 books and pamphlets, 18,000 offprints and 200 print periodical titles, as well as a wide collection of electronic journals.

    The scientific collection covers geology, geophysics, glaciology, climatology, meteorology, upper atmosphere physics, and marine, terrestrial and freshwater biology, all with the accent on the polar regions. In addition, there is a broad collection of material on the history of the polar regions, including historic expedition reports and personal memoirs.

  • These are the webcams we mention:




Books We are Reading


The Star-Touched Queen, by Roshani Chokshi “Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets — thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most. . .including herself.”



Free Agent (Book 1, Grimm Agency), by J.C. Nelson “When it comes to crafting happily-ever-afters, the Agency is the best in the land of Kingdom. The Fairy Godfather Grimm can solve any problem—from eliminating imps to finding prince charming—as long as you can pay the price…

Working for Grimm isn’t Marissa Locks’s dream job. But when your parents trade you to a Fairy Godfather for a miracle, you don’t have many career options. To pay off her parents’ debt and earn her freedom, Marissa must do whatever Grimm asks, no matter what fairy-tale fiasco she’s called on to deal with.

Setting up a second-rate princess with a first-class prince is just another day at the office. But when the matchmaking goes wrong, Marissa and Grimm find themselves in a bigger magical muddle than ever before. Not only has the prince gone missing, but the Fae are gearing up to attack Kingdom, and a new Fairy Godmother is sniffing around Grimm’s turf, threatening Marissa with the one thing she can’t resist: her heart’s wishes.

Now Marissa will have to take on Fairies, Fae, dragons, and princesses to save the realm—or give up any hope of ever getting her happy ending…”



  • Thanks for listening!
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  • We will be repeating this topic periodically, so send us libraries you have visited or read about that would be interesting for all of us! (send photos if you have them to share!)
  • Check out the Fulbright Scholar Program to do some traveling to some international libraries and do some library work!


  • Next week we discuss Copyright – you won’t want to miss it!

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