Book Chambers

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Book Chambers


of the republics of the USSR, state bibliographical institutions that register and tabulate the printed works published in the republic and provide information about them for bibliographical publications; they are branch centers of scientific and technical information and propaganda in publishing, the printing industry, the book trade, and state bibliography.

In 1972 there were 17 republic-level book chambers: the Ukrainian, Byelorussian, Armenian (all founded in 1922), Georgian (1924), Azerbaijani (1925), Turkmen, Uzbek, Tatar (1926), Bashkir (1929), Chuvash (1931), Tadzhik (1936), Kazakh (1937), Kirghiz (1939), Latvian (1940), Estonian (1941), Lithuanian (1945), and Moldavian (1957).

Some chambers began as sections of republic libraries and became Union-republic book chambers. In some autonomous republics the functions of book chambers were assumed by the republic libraries.

The republic book chambers receive free obligatory control copies of all printed works published in the republic and classify and describe them in annuals. Data concerning individual printed works are cited, as a rule, in the language of the publication and in Russian translation. The republic book chambers compile indexes that list materials about the republic placed in the press of the Soviet Union’s other republics and in foreign socialist countries. Such bibliographies are published most frequently as supplements to the annuals—for example, Belorusskaia SSR ν pechati SSSR i zarubezhnykh sotsialisticheskikh stran (The Byleorussian SSR in the Press of the USSR and Foreign Socialist Countries)—or are issued as separate publications—for example, the yearbook Ukrainskaia SSR ν izdaniiakh respublik Sovetskogo Soiuza i stran sotsialisticheskogo sodruzhestva (The Ukrainian SSR in Publications of the Republics of the Soviet Union and the Countries of the Socialist Alliance).

One of the most important activities of the book chambers is the centralized cataloging of printed works and the publication of cards for library files. Yearbooks carry statistics on the republic’s printing activities—for example, Pechat’ Turkmenskoi SSR ν 19. . . godu (The Press of the Turkmen SSR in 19 . . . ) or Statistika pechati Estonskoi SSR ν 19. . . godu (Printing Statistics of the Estonian SSR in 19 . . . )—or on collections encompassing a lengthy period—for example, Pechat’ Kazakhskoi SSR za 50 let: 1917–1967 (The Press of the Kazakh SSR During 50 Years: 1917–1967) and Pressa Ukrainskoi SSR: 1917–1966 (The Press of the Ukrainian SSR: 1917–1966).

General scientific and methodological guidance for the book chambers comes from the All-Union Book Chamber. Conferences of the book chamber directors have been convoked on a regular basis since 1924 (the latest, the 18th, was in 1971).


Sorok let sovetskoi gosudarstvennoi bibliografii (1920–1960). Sb. St. Moscow, 1960.
Gosudarstvennaia bibliografiia SSSR: Spravochnik, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1967.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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