United Nations announces World Digital Library

On April 21st the United Nations announced the its online site for scholarly resources from around the globe. Called the “World Digital Library“, it has an easy-to-use interface that allows you to select geographic areas and/or time periods, then narrow your search by type of resource, general topic area, specific country, etc. There’s also a keyword search function for those who prefer searching over browsing. And did I mention that it’s multilingual? James Billington, the U.S. Librarian of Congress, is in charge of the project, which so far includes 1,170 scanned items from 27 libraries in 19 countries. This site is bound to grow as libraries continue to contribute cultural resource images.

According to the website, “the principal objectives of the WDL are to:
* Promote international and intercultural understanding;
* Expand the volume and variety of cultural content on the Internet;
* Provide resources for educators, scholars, and general audiences;
* Build capacity in partner institutions to narrow the digital divide within and between countries.”
Take some time to peruse the World Digital Library. With images such as ancient rock art in South Africa and medical drawings from the year 1410, the World Digital Library will surprise you with cultural wonders!

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