by Latisha Reynolds
Latisha Reynolds is the Humanities and Social Sciences Reference Librarian at Ekstrom Library.
The U of L Libraries provide access to eBooks in various formats, and on numerous topics for research or pleasure. These are books that can be downloaded electronically or digitally.
Most of the eBooks are available to U of L students, faculty, and staff but some are freely accessible to anyone. We have individual books that are found in the library catalogs, and collections of eBooks within databases as well. There are also popular fiction and non-fiction titles available on Kindles at both Ekstrom and Kornhauser libraries that can be checked out through the Kindle Loan Program.
Below are descriptions of a few featured eBook collections.
Electronic Thesis and Dissertations
“Since 2002 the University Libraries have been building a collection of digital copies of theses and dissertations authored here at the University of Louisville. This effort is in keeping with an international trend of institutions migrating to electronic theses and dissertations (known as ETDs) in order to provide free worldwide access to these titles and to enable graduate students to include digital media in their works. In 2009 the Libraries migrated the ETD collection to be part of the Libraries Digital Collections. This migration has allowed for full text searching and simultaneous searching of other electronic collections.” U of L Electronic Thesis and Dissertations: http://digital.library.louisville.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/etd/
Early English Books Online
“Early English Books Online (EEBO) contains digital facsimile page images of virtually every work printed in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and British North America and works in English printed elsewhere from 1473-1700….” Early English Books Online: http://eebo.chadwyck.com/home
Safari Technical Books Online
“Safari Books Online is the premier on-demand digital library providing over 23,793 technology, digital media, and business books and videos online to academic and library users.” Safari Books Online: http://proquestcombo.safaribooksonline.com/?mode=MyBookshelf
Oxford Art Online
“Oxford Art Online offers access to the most authoritative, inclusive, and easily searchable online art resources available today. Through a single, elegant gateway users can access—and simultaneously cross-search—an expanding range of Oxford’s acclaimed art reference works: Grove Art Online, the Benezit Dictionary of Artists, the Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, The Oxford Companion to Western Art, and The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms, as well as many specially commissioned articles and bibliographies available exclusively online.” Oxford Art Online: http://www.oxfordartonline.com/subscriber/
Women and Social Movements in the United States
“Women and Social Movements in the United States is a resource for students and scholars of U.S. history and U.S. women’s history. Organized around the history of women in social movements in the U.S. between 1600 and 2000, this collection seeks to advance scholarly debates and understanding about U.S. history generally at the same time that it makes the insights of women’s history accessible to teachers and students at universities, colleges, and high schools. The collection currently includes 110 document projects and archives with almost 4,200 documents and 56,000 pages of additional full-text documents, written by more than 2,200 primary authors. It also includes book, film, and website reviews, news from the archives, and teaching tools.” WASM/Alexander Street Press- http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/wam2/wam2.index.map.aspx
Health Sciences eBooks
We also have many health sciences related eBooks; check out the eBook Health Sciences guide at: http://louisville.libguides.com/content.php?pid=279208&sid=2703658.
For more information on accessing eBooks check out the eBooks at U of L Libraries guide: http://louisville.libguides.com/content.php?pid=279208&sid=2299786. The eBooks collection is still growing, so check back often to find new titles!
One of my favorite activities when I’m sitting at the reference desk waiting for a student to ask me a question is to explore new books. Sometimes we’ll have a cart full of new reference books waiting to go; other times I’ll use the catalog’s “new items” section to search for newly received books or videos. One fairly new release is The Foxfire 45th Anniversary Book: Singin’, Praisin’, Raisin’. [Ekstrom Library 3rd floor book stacks F106 .F695 2011]
This anniversary book is part of the Foxfire series which started out as a student writing exercise by a new teacher in a Georgia school. He asked his students what they could do to make learning English interesting. They decided to start a magazine in which they would write articles based on community interviews. In addition to capturing their interest the assignment captured aspects of a disappearing culture – from dressing hogs to making quilts. Many of the magazine’s articles were later published as books. While we don’t have the whole series we do have a number of the books, including:
- The Foxfire book: hog dressing, log cabin building, mountain crafts and foods, planting by the signs, snake lore, hunting tales, faith healing, moonshining, and other affairs of plain living
- Foxfire 2: ghost stories, spring wild plant foods, spinning and weaving, midwifing, burial customs, corn shuckin’s, wagon making and more affairs of plain living
- Foxfire 3: animal care, banjos and dulcimers, hide tanning, summer and fall wild plant foods, butter churns, ginseng, and still more affairs of plain living
- Foxfire 4: fiddle making, springhouses, horse trading, sassafras tea, berry buckets, gardening, and further affairs of plain living
- Foxfire 7: Ministers, church members, revivals, baptisms, shaped-note and gospel singing, faith healing, camp meetings, footwashing, snake handling, and other traditions of mountain religious heritage
- Foxfire 9: general stores, the Jud Nelson wagon, a praying rock, a Catawban Indian potter, haint tales, quilting, home cures, and the log cabin revisited
- Foxfire 10: railroad lore, boardinghouses, Depression-era Appalachia, chair making, whirligigs, snake canes, and gourd art
Besides being a great way to learn about Appalachian culture, the books have been praised as instructional tomes on all kinds of skills from fiddle making to horse trading.
 The Foxfire Fund, “Foxfire Magazine” http://www.foxfire.org/magazine.html. [Accessed January 29, 2013.]
Banned Books Week draws attention to actual or attempted banning of books across the United States. This focus centers around the topic of censorship, which can adversely impact the ability of libraries to function as places that promote free and open access to information. Hence, this time is viewed as a Celebration of the Freedom to Read.
Intellectual freedom is valued by libraries in the aim of promoting access to information and the expression of ideas in various forms; even if the information might be considered unorthodox or unpopular. Banned Books Week stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of these items for all who wish to read and access them.
This year marks the 30th Anniversary in which libraries across the U.S. have celebrated Banned Books Week.
Why are books banned?
The three most common issues that spark debate on the banning of books involves those that are: “sexually explicit, contain offensive language, and unsuited for any age group,” according to the Office for Intellectual Freedom. Just to give you context for specific examples in the 20th century as described by Doyle (2010), consider the reasons why the following works were banned at one point:
- Invisible Man – Excerpts banned and removed due to images of violence and sexuality.
- As I Lay Dying – Banned for obscene passages about abortion and using God’s name in vain.
- The Lord of the Rings– Burned in Alamogordo, New Mexico in 2001 for being satanic.
- The Catcher in the Rye - Banned, challenged, and removed due to profane language, sexual references, and immorality.
As new generations of people discover these works and other contemporary works being published, there will likely be a continual need to address issues of access and censorship. Regardless of what side you support, having conversations about how to best address these issues with each other is key.
For more information about banned titles click here to view the list by author, decade, and year.
The Ekstrom Library will hold readings October 1st – 3rd from 11-1pm outside of the east entrance facing the quadrangle. Readers are needed to fill each 15 minute slot. Open slots are still available, so if you would like to participate contact Toccara Porter or call the Reference Desk at (502) 852-6747. Stop by, enjoy the readings, and share with us your thoughts and questions.
Doyle, R. P. (2010). Banned books: Challenging our freedom to read. Chicago: American Library Association.
“Libraries exist to preserve society’s cultural artifacts and to provide access to them. If libraries are to continue to foster education and scholarship in this era of digital technology, it’s essential for them to extend those functions into the digital world.” – The Internet Archive
Earlier this year, the University of Louisville Libraries began digitizing and adding texts to our very own corner of The Internet Archive, a nonprofit internet library which provides free, permanent access to digital collections from all over the world. Several of the items we’ve added so far are souvenir booklets containing some wonderful photographs of the city of Louisville from the early 20th century.
Other items include biographies and histories of industries in Kentucky, including one of our most downloaded items to date, Fine Whisky Facts compiled by George C. Buchanan.
The books UofL Libraries have uploaded to The Internet Archive can be viewed in several formats including online, on a Kindle e-reader device, downloaded as a PDF file, etc. UofL’s contributions were scanned and assigned metadata by Sarah Frankel and MARC cataloging records were created by Tyler Goldberg.
At the time of Ray Bradbury’s death last week, I had just read something by him for the first time in decades: his short reflection called “Take Me Home” in the Sci Fi-themed special double issue of The New Yorker (88(16): 66, June 4-11, 2012).
Reading his nostalgic piece invoked my own fond memories of the enthusiastic Junior High English teacher who first introduced me to Bradbury’s work. It also, along with the spate of obituaries and tributes that followed that last published work, highlighted some connections between Bradbury’s influences and my current profession.
Ray Bradbury championed libraries, to which he attributes his education as a writer. His “How Instead of Being Educated in College, I Was Graduated from Libraries or, Thoughts from a Chap Who Landed on the Moon in 1932″ (Wilson Library Bulletin 45(9): 842-851, May 1971) is stored in UofL Libraries’ Robotic Retrieval System.
In addition to the role libraries played in his formation as a writer, Bradbury was influenced by Edgar Rice Burroughs. So was my colleague George McWhorter, who established the Nell Dismukes McWhorter Memorial Collection of Edgar Rice Burroughs, the largest institutional collection of Burroughs materials in the world, in the Special Collections department at UofL’s Ekstrom Library. McWhorter confirms that the collection includes letters from Bradbury.
Bradbury is not the only writer to acknowledge his debt to Burroughs. The Library of America has published two Burroughs titles, with introductions by Junot Díaz and Thomas Mallon; Michael Chabon contributed to the screenplay for the recent film John Carter, based on a story by Burroughs. The U.S. Postal Service is celebrating the centennial of Burroughs’ publications by issuing a Forever stamp of him later this summer.
Have you ever thought about why humans laugh? Is it to ease those all too tense, serious moments in life? What exactly would one uncover in the study of laughter? I have some theories, but here are a few jokes that will get you warmed up to thinking about why:
Did you hear about why the cross-eyed school teacher got fired? They said, “She could not control her pupils.” Ha, Ha!
How about this one: “Why did the guy from the orange juice factory get fired”? They said, “He could not concentrate.” Get it!
Try this one: “The teacher said to Jimmy. Jimmy this is the fifth day this week that you’ve been in detention. What do you have to say for yourself? Jimmy said, “I’m glad tomorrow is Saturday.”
And one more, “What did the ocean say to the boat?” Nothing, it just waved.”
Well, that last one might be a bit cheesy. The above three jokes I heard in passing a few weeks ago from a pastor at church who likes to crack jokes during sermons. The one about the ocean was from the inside of a laffy-taffy candy paper.
It has been said teachers who invoke humor represent one type of educator who can get students to better remember what they learn (Willingham, 2009, p. 50) For me, laughter hit on that same area the other day. I heard the Government Documents librarian laugh and I said to some students, “Now that’s what missing in the classroom.”
Within these examples one point that can be made is laughter carries a message in connection with many things beyond the comical.
This point is discussed in the work on the right titled, “Inside Jokes: Using Humor to Reverse-Engineer the Mind.” It has a comprehensive chapter listing of the connection of humor to such things as, learning, beliefs, emotions, relationships, mastering our minds, and more. Perhaps, this will help answer some questions about humor and laughter that I posed at the beginning of this entry. Laughing is such a unique reaction by the human body. One just might discover in the study of it, that laughter does in fact go a long way.
Willingham, D. T. (2009) Why Don’t Students Like School: A Cognitive Scientist Answers Questions About How the Mind Works and What It Means for the Classroom. San Franciso, CA: Jossey-Bass*The Willingham book is also available for checkout in the Ekstrom Library, 3rd floor. The Call Number is: LB1060.W5435 2009
[This post highlights the book pictured to the right: "Lies my teacher told me" by James W. Loewen. It is available in the Ekstrom Library at this call number: E175.85.L64, 3rd floor]
Have you ever been sitting in class listening to the teacher and thought to yourself, “This is total nonsense”? Perhaps you read through a textbook and wondered, “Am I really being told the whole story”? Then again, maybe that common historical event was discussed in such a way that the context was completely ignored.
Take for instance the actions of Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War. Lincoln was a great man of intellect and leadership. Known for his connections with such documents as the “Emancipation Proclamation” and the “Gettysburg Address“. Throughout my middle and high school history classes the textbooks covering him could be summarized based on one action: Lincoln freed the slaves. End of story. But was it? At the time, for me, yes it was. My adolescent brain had not developed enough to ask the question, why? Why did Lincoln free the slaves? Was it so much about his believing whole-heartedly that suppressing the humanity of African Americans was inherently wrong and unjust? The list can go on.
However, it was not until a very focused study of the Civil War as an undergraduate student in several history classes where works like James M. McPherson’s, “Battle cry of freedom” and others were the required reads, that new insight was provided into the question of why Lincoln freed the slaves. The freedom was attached to Lincoln doing what was necessary to save the Union. The Confederate army relied upon slave labor for such things as, building forts and helping with medical situations. This labor was of particular importance to key in on by the Union army when the Confederate manpower began to wane near the end of the war and slave labor was necessary for sustenance. Freeing the slaves in the end was about utilizing the best strategic plan that would be successful to break the Confederate resolve in order to preserve the Union—The United States of America.
There is more that can be said here, but maybe this short highlight will inspire you to take up further study.
The Civil War is a fascinating history with many subplots; it is one of the reasons why being a history major was enjoyable. The above point was made not to take anything away from Abraham Lincoln. It is only to say how important seeing things in the entire context can be in providing you with increased understanding into answering the questions of why. We can also derive insight into the psyche and behaviors of people in decision-making positions during these historical events.
Therefore, whether or not these are actual lies teachers (or some books) have told, this book is an opportunity for you to be critical and move beyond the surface value of how these topics are presented in class.
[The following is a guest post from Joanna Thompson, one of our excellent student assistants in Ekstrom Library. Thank you, Joanna!]
This encyclopedia is of personal interest to me because of my interest in cultural anthropology and refugee issues. This interest in refugee issues naturally leads me to a discussion about human rights violations around the world.
The publication covers four aspects of human rights: rights, organizations, persons, and situations. Under the category of rights, topics such as freedom from torture and freedom from genocide are discussed. The organizations discussed range from organizations such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International to the United Nations Security Council. The people discussed included all of the Nobel laureates who had a pronounced interest in promoting human rights. Finally, the situations are laid out according to country, explaining what the current situation is in regards to human rights and the history or background that led them to that particular situation. Although this Encyclopedia, published in 2009, is for the most part events ranging from 1945-today, it also reaches back to events such as the Holocaust and the Irish Famine and provides an in-depth explanation of colonialism. These are important in this publication as a comparison: In order to understand human rights today, it is important to understand past weaknesses. It is one of the most in-depth publications in the University of Louisville collection regarding topics of human rights, and is a perfect tool for individuals who are interested in promoting human rights and equality in the communities, nations, or around the world.
[The Encyclopedia of Human Rights is available in the Ekstrom Library reference collection at JC571 .E673 2009.]
April is National Poetry Month. Yes, the time when the roses are red, and the violets are blue. The time when names like, Maya Angelou, E.E. Cummings, and John Keats jump to the forefront of the literary consciousness. Even a time when, perhaps, like Robert Frost, you begin to ponder about The Road Not Taken.
In celebration of this month listed below are some titles from the Bingham Poetry Room located in the Ekstrom Library on the 1st floor. Formally named the Robert Worth Bingham Poetry Room, Mr. Bingham was notable for many things including, receiving a Law degree from UofL. More information about him can be found in the suggested reads section at the bottom. Housed in this collection is more than 6000 volumes of poetry with an emphasis placed on works published in North America and the United Kingdom. For all who enjoy poetry in all its forms the Bingham Poetry Room will not disappoint.
Here are a few to get you started:3. Dark Emperor & Other Poems of the Night by Joyce Sidman Location: Bingham Poetry Room, 1st floor, PS3569.I295 D37 2010
Other suggested reads:Robert Worth Bingham & the Southern mystique by William E. Ellis Location: Ekstrom Library, 3rd floor, CT 275 .B5737 E45 1997 Robert Worth Bingham Poetry Room, University of Louisville Library Location: Ekstrom Library, 3rd floor, LD3131 .L449 1966 Selected poems of Robert Frost Location: Ekstrom Libray Bingham Poetry Room, 1st floor, PS 3511 .R94 A17 1993
This post continues the series on some of the earliest books in the Art Library’s collection, all of which are housed in the Art Library’s rare book room. If you want to see any of them, just ask at the desk.
Our next book to consider is another one with a very long title: Roma Subterranea Novissima : In Qua Post Antonium Bosium Antesignanum, Io: Severanum … et Celebres Alios Scriptores Antiqua Christianorum et Præcipue Martyrum Cœmeteria, Tituli, Monimenta, Epitaphia, Inscriptiones, ac Nobiliora Sanctorum Sepulchra Sex Libris Distincta Illustrantur et Quamplurimæ Res Ecclesiasticae Iconibus Graphice Describuntur, ac Multiplici Tum Sacra, Tum Profana Eruditione Declarantur. It was written by Antonio Bosio and published in 2 volumes in Rome in 1651.
Antonio Bosio (1575-1629) gave up the study of law at the age of 18 to devote himself to the study of early Christian history, particularly the Roman catacombs. He began his exploration of catacombs in 1593 and in the following years made many discoveries as he broke into numerous catacombs and cubiculum, small family tombs often decorated with frescoes. Because of his systematic exploration of the catacombs, he is considered the founder of the science of Christian archaeology.
In 1597 he completed the Historia passionis SS Martyrum Caeciliae (Rome, 1600), illustrated with engravings by Antonio Tempesta. Roma Sotterranea was published in Italian between 1632 and 1634, shortly after Bosio’s death and was profusely illustrated with plans and engravings by Francesco Fulcaro. The book was re-published by Paolo Aringhi in 1651, with considerable alterations and omissions, and it is this later edition, now with Novissima added to the title, which the Art Library owns.
Below is the title page and one of the interior pages of Roma Subterranea Novissima:
Why does the library collect rare books? Because they are primary source materials of art history, offering a first-hand account of an artist’s life, the first critical response to a building or painting, or a new theory of art or architecture. As the building blocks of art history, they remain relevant sources for researchers.