July 6, 2011

Beyond the Shelf - World Digital Library

These days you don't even have to leave your home to go to the library. And I don't mean that you can have a look at online catalogues of what your favorite library has to offer. Or to make online reservations for books. Nope. I refer to bringing the library to you.

The World Digital Library promotes international and intercultural understanding by expanding the volume and variety of cultural content on the internet. It provides resources for educators, scholars, and the general audiences completely free of charge and in multilingual format. Whether manuscripts, maps, rare books, musical scores, recordings, films, prints, photographs, or architectural drawings, you will find an amazing amount of topics, such as philosophy and religion, or language and sciences, or arts and geography. To boot the site is easy to navigate and includes special features such as timelines. Descriptions and interviews with curators about featured items provide additional information.

Trust me, if you're interested in finding out more about history and cultural treasures from around the world, you should definitely check out this site. Maybe you want to catch a glimpse of a sketch of the DNA Double Helix by Francis Crick or how about viewing a photograph of Richard M. Nixon and Elvis Presley at the White House or reading from the Persian poem The Rose Garden? Whatever may interest you, have fun exploring!


The WDL was developed by a team at the U.S. Library of Congress, with contributions by partner institutions in many countries; the support of the United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); and the financial support of a number of companies and private foundations.

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