Suzanne Briet


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Suzanne Briet

  1. 1. Suzanne Briet:“Madame Documentation”<br />Gena Chattin<br />May 24, 2010<br />
  2. 2. Introduction<br />Pioneer in integrating “documentation” (better known today as “information science”) with librarianship<br />One of the first three women to be appointed a librarian at the French national library (Bibliothèquenationalefrançaise / BNF / BN)<br />Published Qu’est-ceque la documentation? (What is documentation?)<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  3. 3. Agenda<br />Early life and educational background<br />Career and contributions<br />Life after librarianship<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  4. 4. Young Suzanne<br />Born in Ardennes in 1894, grew up in Paris<br />Came of age in WWI<br />Was a teacher in England and Algeria <br />Placed first on nationalcertification exam for librarians <br />Appointed to the BN in 1924<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  5. 5. Career and contributions: The BN<br />“Salle des Catalogues” – 1934-1954<br />Moved bibliographies from closed stacks into open room<br />Organized indexing, cards<br />Bibliographic Advisory / Reference Service<br />Also indexed collections of publishers, other libraries<br />Now Salle X in the new Bibliothèquenationale François Mitterand building<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  6. 6. World War II in Paris<br />Briet worked at the BN all through World War II and prepared a publication for UNESCO after the war assessing damage to libraries“In her memoir under the keyword Paix (peace) … she writes of the reading room with three hundred readers ‘peaceful with their books. Peace through books’” (Maack 733).<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  7. 7. Career and contributions: Documentation<br /><ul><li>Founded and led the Union Francaise des Organismes de Documentation (UFOD) in 1931
  8. 8. French equivalent of the U.S. organization known today as ASIS&T
  9. 9. Founding Director of Studies of the Institut National de Techniques de la Documentation
  10. 10. First school of Documentation/Information Science worldwide when it was established in 1951
  11. 11. Vice President of the International Federation for Documentation (IFD)</li></ul>Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  12. 12. Qu’est-ceque la documentation? (1951)<br />What IS a document? <br />Defines a document as “evidence in support of a fact” (Maack 743).<br />A document must have materiality, intentionality, be processed, and be perceived as a document (Buckland).<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  13. 13. Qu’est-ceque la documentation? (cont.)<br />Pushed to accept more than just text<br />A changing profession<br />Argued for new and active information services (i.e. reference service)<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  14. 14. Life After librarianship<br />Left the profession at age 60 after 30 years at the BN due to resistance to new ideas<br />Autobiography Entre Aisne et Meuse et au-delà(1972) organized alphabetically by keyword and without dates<br />Established a women’s Rotary club of over 8,000 members<br />President of Union of European Women<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  15. 15. Life after librarianship (cont.)<br />Became a historian and published many books<br />Wrote more than 20 publications on Rimbaud, to whom she was distantly related<br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  16. 16. Resources consulted<br />Buckland, M. K. (1995). The centenary of “Madame documentation”: Suzanne Briet, 1894-1989. Journal of the American Society for Information Science, 46, 235-237. <br />Fayet-Scribe, S. (2009). Women professionals in documentation in France during the 1930s. Libraries & the Cultural Record, 44(2), 201-219. <br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />
  17. 17. Resources consulted (cont.)<br />Maack, M. N. (2004). The lady and the antelope: Suzanne Briet's contribution to the French documentation movement. Library Trends, 52(4), 719-747. <br />Gena Chattin - May 24, 2010<br />