Surprise! It’s Table 8-2!

Piggybacking off the ideas of my classmates, I would also agree that Table 8-2 was very easy to interpret and understand.

Table 8-2

Table 8-2

Reading through the accompanying text by William J. Gilmore (276) his textual evidence helps to support the chart presented. The table presents the Composite Size of Family Libraries in the years 1787-1830 and it is clearly presented in a concise form by the chart presented. The chart shows that as the libraries increase in size, the number decreases and vice versa. The graph also tells the viewer that the majority of the libraries in that time period were between the sizes of 1-9 volumes as those groups make up a majority of the libraries. I would also like to note that this particular chart is limited by the range in which is selected, 1787 -1830. Why this time period? Why not start with 1780 or 1785? I feel that by presenting the data in this specific and detailed range, Gilmore is misrepresenting data in a way.

Looking at this chart, I’m not even sure if there needs to be a graph. I feel that all of the information presented in the chart effectively tells me about what libraries were in the time between 1787-1830. But, if I were to present this graph in a way that would represent what I had interpreted from combining the textual evidence with the chart, I would select a line graph. I would select a line graph because the line graph would show most efficiently the inverse relationship between volume size and libraries. I believe that by presenting the data this way, there is an easy visual representation of what I took from the chart and Gilmore’s text.

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One thought on “Surprise! It’s Table 8-2!

  1. I see how a line graph would make sense here, but wouldn’t a bar graph be preferred? Line graphs are ideal for showing time and change over time, but time isn’t a variable here. It matters to the graph, as it is a composite of all times, but the variables are size of library and volume size. A bar graph would work better, in my opinion because the comparison made here isn’t on time rather size and volume. A line graph can do this, but often bar graphs better emphasize that the comparison is for variables unrelated to time. It doesn’t make a huge difference, I just think that maybe a column or bar graph would be best.
    But I agree with your final paragraph, in this case there is so little information on it you don’t even need a graph to understand the data. I feel like there is an optimal point of data at which a graph works better than a table, and this amount of data falls under that point.

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