Visualizing Bankruptcy at the Library

Bankruptcy by the Books: Visualizing Bankruptcy at the Seattle Public Library

Between 2005 and 2010, use of the Seattle Public Library and guide books on personal law and bankruptcy reflect the financial instability and crisis throughout the United States.

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Do the transactions at the Seattle Public Library reflect the financial crisis of the past few years? Browsing the library for books related to bankruptcy quickly leads toward dewey numbers 346.73077 and 346.73078. These nonfiction titles cover manuals and guides for navigating the legal domain of bankruptcy and debt collection for individuals. Year by year, use of these titles increases by nearly 400%, ranging from 102 and 120 check-outs in 2005 and 2006, to 263 and 394 transactions in 2009 and 2010. Patron activity in the library dramatically reflects the struggle by families to maintain ownership of their homes and navigate the financial crisis.

Federal Reserve Bank of NY: Crisis_Timeline.pdf
Wikipedia: United_States_housing_bubble
Wikipedia: Subprime_crisis_impact_timeline
Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis: Timeline

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3 Responses to Visualizing Bankruptcy at the Library

  1. Pingback: visualization: popularity of bankruptcy books at the Seattle Public Library « #OccupyData NYC

  2. Suzanne says:

    This is such a neat idea! I’m a big fan of your visualizations.

  3. Pingback: visualization: bankruptcy books at the Seattle Public Library | #OccupyData NYC

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