libraries

One thing that I miss is access to a library, a public free library.

The state library in Mostar was destroyed in the War and has yet to be rebuilt.

The American Corner, which is sponsored by the Embassy, has a great selection of books, and computers and energetic librarians, but the books are solely American books.

 What of the university library? The stacks are closed, which means you have to ask for the books. But, there is no indexing system. No Library of Congress system. No Dewey Decimal system.  The shelves of English books were an odd assortment of books, mostly classics ranging from Shakespeare to a few modern books. But the impression was more of a used bookstore than a  library.

How do they do research?  Internet.

In Mostar, it is also impossible to buy English language books, and the mail system is very difficult.  (If you need to get a letter or a package to someone, then you can take it to the local bus station, and give it to the driver. It is the best way to deliver an important letter. )  So, you are left with badly photocopied books, random books, and whatever you can find on the internet for free. 

Still, the internet can be valuable.  I have learned that my street is named Osmana Đikića, who is a famous Bosniak poet and playwright. In fact, his tomb is placed at the foot of the street.

And in America, well, how many books can you find written by a Bosnian, Croat, or Serb in your local library? Or Books written in BCS ( which is the acronym for Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian.)

 

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