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The National Assembly Library
Reporter Bae Geun-hang  |
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[0호] 승인 2010.09.04  
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All books and data should be brought to ‘These Libraries’ within 30 days. Do you know what ‘These Libraries’ are? They are the National Central Library and the National Assembly Library. In particular, the National Assembly Library is known as a legislative and social science branch academic library. It is located at the right side of the National Assembly in Yeouido.

Their mission is to collect knowledge and information resources for the National Assembly and the public. What does a library (so called ‘Core of school’) mean to university students? Collecting research materials? Preparing for an exam? Browsing through books in a library? Or even enjoying a romantic university life like in the drama ‘Love Story in Harvard’? Thinking about romance and libraries, let’s go to the National Assembly Library which is providing us with world of information.

The National Assembly Library is a representative of the Republic of Korea and is equipped with the Current Collections, a Master and Doctorate Thesis Room, Microfilm Resources Room, Multimedia Room, Library for Handicapped Service, a Children’s Reading Room and other similar rooms. The Current Collections are filled with everything that has been published in Korea in the past 2 years.

These kinds of libraries are copyright libraries. The first goal of the National Assembly Library is parliamentary information services. In particular, they provide members of the National Assembly with the top-of-the-line parliamentary data and policy information. They translate foreign constitutions, politics, economics, and social data etc., into Korean. In addition, they carry out national bibliography operations. In other words, they support the public in research work. Then, they construct a digital library for everyone to take advantage of without any restrictions from time and space.

They became the library which has the most academic theses. So far, they have constructed a total DB (Database) of about 80,000 graduate thesis cases. They possess about 8,700 periodical publications. They have approximately 2.2 million volumes. They are truly the most representative library in Korea.

In November 2009, The Dokdo and the Unification Resources Rooms were installed in the second floor of the National Assembly Library. Dokdo is the symbol of territorial sovereignty for Korea. The National Assembly Library allows Dokdo coast-guardsmen to use the library’s data and original DB about Dokdo. Also, the National Assembly Library plays an important role in letting the international community know that Dokdo is Korea’s territory through publishing information on Dokdo in foreign languages.
In August 2010, when reporters visited the National Assembly Library, it was so crowded by the public that no seats were available.

Since greeting the summer vacation, university students and the public are taking time to visit the library. One citizen said he came to the library with his family for a vacation instead of going to the sea or a valley. There is clearly a passion for the truth and knowledge from Korean people! I can feel a sense of Korea’s future.

It is well known that many world leaders have been patronages of the library. Lincoln, Carnegie (the steel magnate), Lenin, Mao, JFK, Kim Daejung, even premier Kim Il-sung of North Korea emphasized that the library is the nation’s future. Yoo Jongpil, who is a former Chief librarian in the National Assembly Library said, “The library is the ground of the earth,” in his book ‘Travel Essay in World Library,’ “As the ground gives food to the body, the library gives food for the mind.”

The current world is hard on youths. Society calls youths the ‘Generation of eight hundred eighty thousand won’, or talk about the ‘Gloomy 20s due to the unemployment crisis.’ Nevertheless, many world leaders keep a good heart by letting us proceed to our dream in the library. How about taking a step toward the truth at the National Assembly Library and put our dreams and hopes in a bright sky? I invite you to the National Assembly Library where history and philosophy are living and breathing.

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