Irrepressible Reformer: A Biography of Melvil Dewey

Drawing from rare archival materials researched over a period of 15 years, preeminent Dewey historian Wayne Wiegand has produced the first frank and comprehensive biography of the man behind the Dewey Decimal Classification System and scores of other enduring achievements Tracing Dewey s life and influences that shaped it, Irrepressible Reformer explores Dewey s ingeniousDrawing from rare archival materials researched over a period of 15 years, preeminent Dewey historian Wayne Wiegand has produced the first frank and comprehensive biography of the man behind the Dewey Decimal Classification System and scores of other enduring achievements Tracing Dewey s life and influences that shaped it, Irrepressible Reformer explores Dewey s ingenious enterprise as a library innovator, New York State education official, and business and resort operator as well as those aspects many found arrogant, manipulative, immoral and bigoted.
Irrepressible Reformer A Biography of Melvil Dewey Drawing from rare archival materials researched over a period of years preeminent Dewey historian Wayne Wiegand has produced the first frank and comprehensive biography of the man behind the Dewey

  • Title: Irrepressible Reformer: A Biography of Melvil Dewey
  • Author: Wayne A. Wiegand
  • ISBN: 9780838906804
  • Page: 341
  • Format: Paperback
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    1 thought on “Irrepressible Reformer: A Biography of Melvil Dewey”

    1. Melvil Dewey was a weird, obsessively driven guy. If you're into Victorian scandal and/or librarians, he's a character to know about. The book is pretty good reading, especially if you skim the chapters about all the legislation he helped enact.

    2. Well researched and thorough. Melvil emerges as a odd and unlikeable individual even if he did manage to get his classification scheme adopted by lots of libraries. Too bad his attempts at spelling reform did not succeed. Everything I heard about Dewey in library school is true and then some.

    3. A masterpiece of biography--Wiegand handles the confounding conundrum of Melvil Dewey's character without bias for or against him, leaving the reader to decide what merits and reproofs Dewey is due. A fascinating read on multiple levers, whether as a history of the man who revolutionized library and education systems in ways that persist to this day, or even as an examination of how a child's upbringing will set his or her worldview and personality for life.

    4. This was a slog and I doubted at times I would finish it.It's more of a textbook which would fit in with Melvil Dewey's idea of reading being only educational and uplifting. I'm sure he'd shudder by studying my list.Author Wayne Wiegand lets us know there was more to Dewey than his then innovative and still in use classification system. I wondered how he arrived at the categories and didn't get a great answer. But I did find out that Dewey was a leader in education ahead of his time in adult an [...]

    5. Disappointed my library science program has no historical background class, no 'how-we-got-here-from-there' survey course, I decided to read a bio or two of this giant in our field. Wiegand is a library historian who seems to focus on American librarianship. This is a good, 'warts and all', unbiased recounting of Dewey's life & career. I still prefer the Library of Congress system to Dewey Decimals, any day of the week!

    6. Dewey was such a fascinating, terrible person that reading about his schemes was extremely entertaining. The biography is written in a workmanlike way, and at times I wished for more flair. Nevertheless I appreciate the original research that went into it.

    7. Because I did not read 100% of this book (though I did get through a significant portion - for school), I'll be honest and put it on my didn't-finish shelf. Perhaps I'll pick it up again another time, Dewey was a character.

    8. Often dry with the details of obscenely intricate machinations, but an outstanding resource that hits on Dewey's brilliance, peculiarities, and detractors. I had a few guffaws, too, at some choice quotes and accounts.

    9. Although I haven't read this book, I believe it would give further insight into the life of Melville Dewey and how he changed the face of libraries with a new way of thinking. I am wondering if his new concepts were met with resistance?

    10. I am interested in reading more about Dewey because he was so innovative. I'd like to know more about him as a person.

    11. I chose this book because I think it will be interesting to read about Dewey's life since he made such a difference in the library world.

    12. Dewey was a very strange man. This took me forever to read because it was very thorough but I found it interesting.

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