Temple for All-people Learning

grand people's study house

Dusk view of the Grand People's Study House. (Pyongyang Times Photo)

There is the Grand People's Study House boasting the magnificence of Korean-style architecture on Namsan Hill, one of the best locations in the heart of Pyongyang.

The construction of the study house was initiated by President Kim Il Sung.

He decided to build a temple for all-people learning in order to make the Korean people have high cultural attainments and advanced scientific and technological knowledge as required by the developing times and, to this end, appointed the site for it in the excellent place which officials suggested as a plot for a government office building.

The large house has a total floor space of a hundred thousand square metres and two storeys under and eight above the ground and is crowned with gabled roofs. Its interior is also as dignified as a palace as it has a floor height of over ten metres and is decorated with gorgeous chandeliers and marble pillars.

With a housing capacity of 30 million books, it holds old books of national treasure value, publications brought out in the DPRK since Korea's liberation, old printed books, books printed from wood blocks and manuscripts showing the history of printing culture of Korea, many foreign sci-tech books, periodicals, documents on special technologies and sci-tech news reports of international organizations.

All services at the study house are free.

"It provides people with not only library service but also education as the country's major social educational base. This is its essential feature that makes it distinct from other libraries," said Nam Sun Nyo, vice-president of the study house.

Its educational service is diverse including lecture, short course and sci-tech field service and they are offered by its lecturers and such extramural lecturers as distinguished scientists and other experts holding academic degrees and titles and officials at state organs.

Lectures are popular with irregular students and there is high demand for them as they are personalized to meet the demands of different kinds of people on different levels in the forms of sci-tech lecture, briefing on new technologies, field lecture and refresher course.

The study house directs efforts into improving the quality of library service and education.

It makes information about books more specific and detailed, constantly updates teaching contents, converts lots of books into digital format, builds a database of latest sci-tech information and diversifies service.

The service plan of the house, which is announced through newspapers, radios and TV, is now much awaited by users and millions of people receive various services at the house annually.

The Grand People's Study House was established on April 1 1982.

(Pyongyang Times)

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