It took the work of English-speaking historians for Suzanne Briet’s major contribution to the development of information science to be recognised. Suzanne Briet was behind the creation of the catalogue rooms and bibliographies at the French National Library, remining in charge of them for twenty years. In 1951, she wrote a small pamphlet entitled Qu’est-ce que la documentation ? (What is documentation?), which laid out her understanding of the nature of documentation. Her vision is now proving more relevant than ever in the age of digital documents and the semantic web. Her professional and personal activism played a considerable role in demonstrating that libraries are far from the old-fashioned image with which they are often associated.