Library between language and representation. A philosophical investigation of library science


The article explores the bibliographic universe using philosophical and cognitive science medium. The studies on the operation of language and human mind can offer valid analysis for the realities represented in library catalogues, documentation collections, and users. Natural language has been ingested by some branches of Philosophy of Language as a "game" which follows specific rules in a very close relation with the respective social contest. In the same way, the catalogue requires standards that takes into account the purposes of a library and the peculiarity of its users. A research on cataloguing should consider a deep understanding on the functions and on the use of a library (rather than looking for unique models), without renouncing to the role of the library as a social institution, and of the library science as an academic subject.


Cataloguing; Cognitive psychology; Representation; Semantic indexing

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