3.00 FYI France: Ejournal and archive

by Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us

October 15, 2001 issue. This file presents an archive copy of the issue of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which was distributed via email on October 15, 2001.

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Versions of the following have appeared online regularly, since 1992, as a feature of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which is distributed for free via email every month except August. Ejournal subscriptions may be obtained via email request to: kessler@well.sf.ca.us

Here this file is one of a number made available -- hopefully attractively, all in one place, and relevant to libraries and online digital information work in France and Europe -- as part of FYI France (sm)(tm), an online service to which anyone can subscribe for 12 months by postal mailing a check for US $45, payable to Jack Kessler, to PO Box 460668, San Francisco, California, USA 94146 (site licenses also are available): please write your email address on the front of your check. Please email suggestions for improvements to me at kessler@well.sf.ca.us


Medical libraries, in the era of la poudre blanche


Now that nuts are sending envelopes of white powder to France as well, to the Collège de France among other places apparently -- four Paris locations are reporting "la poudre blanche" in their morning mail today, as is the chancellor's office in Germany -- I thought people here might be interested in seeing some medical / health libraries in France: places to find accurate answers to at least the medical / health aspects of all this "anthrax" madness --

* Paris, Bibliothèque interuniversitaire de mèdecine (BIUM)

--W3: http://www.bium.univ-paris5.fr/
--postal: 12 rue de l'Ecole de Médecine, 75270 Paris cedex 06
--t., fx.

--60,000 works 16th - 19th c.; theses since 1539; historic theses from Montpellier and Strasboug; provincial theses to 1985; foreign theses; 20,800 periodicals titles including 4,000 current; fonds dentaire 10,000 works, 2,000 periodicals titles, 30,000 theses.

--Counts: "La BIUM possède environ 18,000 collections de périodiques, du XVIIe siècle à nos jours. Elle reçoit actuellement 4,000 périodiques en cours de publication, qui représentent environ 30,000 fascicules par an. Elle est la seule à posséder en France une bonne partie de ces collections, et la mise à disposition du public de son catalogue à travers le Web est une des priorités de 1997. Dans ce but, nous travaillons actuellement à l'élaboration d'un accès direct à la base de données des périodiques."

--Outstanding online introduction to the history and collections of some of the oldest and most famous medical and research libraries in France. Online image collections, fonds ancien, announcements and online catalogs, all in a process of rapid development and growth. Subscribers please see also FYI France ejournal issue of April 15, 1998 at http://www.fyifrance.com .


* Bibliothèque interuniversitaire de Pharmacie / BIUP

--W3: http://www.biup.univ-paris5.fr/
--Minitel: 3617BIUP
--t. poste 421
--postal: 4, avenue de l'Observatoire 75005 Paris

--Counts: "Possède environ 100,000 ouvrages, thèses, brochures et publications de laboratoires et plus de 4,000 titres de périodiques dont près de 1,000 sont en cours."


* Centre de documentation et d'information en éthique des sciences de la vie et de la santé -- INSERM / Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale. Bibliothèque

--W3: http://dicdoc.kb.inserm.fr:2010/basiscdei/cdei.html
--email: cdei@kb.inserm.fr
--t.; fx.,
--postal: 71, rue St Dominique 75007 Paris

--Bioethique -- Accès libre, mais il est conseillé de prendre rendez - vous -- "La bibliothèque offre un fonds d'environ 3,500 ouvrages et une centaine de périodiques dans le domaine de l'éthique des sciences de la vie et de la santé et les disciplines connexes : médecine, droit, philosophie. La consultation se fait sur place au CDEI, il n'y a pas de prêt. Une photocopieuse est mise à disposition des lecteurs. Elle fonctionne avec une carte valable pour 100 ou 200 copies, à acheter sur place."

--There are going to be bioethical issues -- at least about the availability of vaccines and information -- and about prioritization, of the vaccines and information which are available...

--The French just have been through their long and very painful "affaire de sang contaminé", so their medical ethics literature is filled with discussions of many of the relevant issues, none of which are simple. For example, the US government currently has enough Anthrax vaccine stockpiled to inoculate perhaps 2 million of its 285 million people... it thinks... -- shades of Peter Sellers' Dr. Strangelove, calculating how long "certain government and military leaders" might survive a nuclear holocaust, protected in underground bunkers, and what that selected few might require in order to survive...


* Institut Pasteur. Médiathèque

--W3: http://www.pasteur.fr/units/biblio/
--W3: catalog -- http://catalogue.biblio.pasteur.fr/catalogue/
--t.; fx. office,; fx. Inter - Library Lending,
--postal: Bibliothèque Centrale, Centre d'Information Scientifique, Institut Pasteur, 28 rue du Docteur Roux, 75724 Paris Cedex 15

--Counts: 230,000 volumes, 30,000 titles; 2,400 periodicals, 850 current -- "Microbiologie, virologie, immunologie, biologie moléculaire et biochimie"; the listing of which hardly does justice to the global pre - eminence of this institute in all of these fields. W3 sites available in English.


If you are thinking of contacting any of these folks, well, up until last week I would have suggested sending them a postal letter, "in good French, handwritten if possible...", on the theory that French formal correspondence still was clinging to "the old ways" and would not reply to faxes, fone calls, email, etc., particularly if these latter carried communications in abrupt and aggressive non - French accents.

But this week and going forward I no longer am so certain. It seems that Senator Tom Daschle just has received one of those "la poudre blanche" missives -- as have now, in France, the Collège de France, the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, the Trésorerie Publique du 13e Arrondissement, and the CNES / Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales at Evry (Essonne) -- and French Minister of Health Dr. Bernard Kouchner just has re - launched the production there of the smallpox vaccine...

So I expect that correspondents in France may be more interested in receiving your email, than your "postal letter", from now on... French cultural preferences for letter - writing perhaps will go the way of the horse - and - buggy and the scrivener, finally, not because of the much - feared American technology juggernaut but because of these nuts and their bugs. Penmanship out / digitization in, but who would have thunk for this reason?


Anthrax in French, incidentally, is "la bactérie de la maladie du charbon" -- bacillus anthracis in the Latin, "anthrax" being the Greek for carbuncle or coal, as in "anthracite". And it has another French connection, having been a disease studied by Pasteur, when he first was figuring out how diseases are transmitted -- the blood of sheep dead from the disease turned black, "like carbon" --

So it seems that Yeats was right, and bits of history do repeat and turn us back upon ourselves "in the widening gyre". The poet said,

Why did he have to put in that bit about "sands of the desert"...

And here we are again, 150 years after Pasteur, wondering about the cosmic connections among deserts, the transmission of smallpox -- we thought we'd killed that one for good -- and Pasteur's sheep.




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M. Eiffel

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Document maintained by: Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us
Last update: October 15, 2001