Read, Listen, Watch

19
Nov14

Our Marathon: The Boston Bombing Digital Archive – WBUR Oral History Project Announces Lesson Plans

Posted by: Claudia Willett

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In the wake of the events that occurred on April 15, 2013 at the 117th Boston Marathon and on April 19, 2013 in Watertown, Northeastern University English Professor Elizabeth Maddock Dillon and Assistant Professor Ryan Cordell recognized the obvious need for a space where people could tell and share their stories with each other.  They believed that sharing stories from survivors, families, witnesses, visitors to the city, and everyone around the world touched by the event will speed the healing process, and wanted to create that space as a gift to the community.

Together, they established the Our Marathon: The Boston Bombing Digital Archive, a crowd-sourced, digital archive of pictures, videos, stories, and social media related to the Boston Marathon bombing.  Thus far, they have acquired an archive of almost 10,000 items, 3 interactive exhibits, and 3 major collections.

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[April 21, 2013, from the Public Submissions collection]

This summer, I contributed to this remarkable endeavor as a Simmons School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) graduate summer intern sponsored by the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections Department and supported by the Project Co-Director James McGrath. In addition to exhibit building and social media, the main task of my internship was to create lesson plans for schoolroom use.

Because children were affected by this crisis as well, the team at Our Marathon thought it would help the healing process for children to use the Our Marathon archives—to remember and share stories in the safety of their own classrooms.  Additionally, it can be difficult for teachers to navigate the complex questions young students ask and a resource like the digital archive can work as a great tool to facilitate age appropriate discussion.

To that end, I helped create a Teaching Resources page for Our Marathon. This page showcases five lesson plans for Kindergarten through Grade 12 that utilize Letters to the City of Boston and The Copley Square Memorial collections,  and the WBUR Oral History Project as the basis for a teaching unit. These lesson plans are designed to demonstrate mastery of grade and subject appropriate Common Core Standards.

Hopefully, these assignments will generate more student submissions to the archive as well as create a platform for an important dialogue amongst students and teachers. I look forward to reading about their experiences in the Our Marathon archives.

Posted in: Archives and Special Collections, History, Information and Society, Library News and Events, Read, Listen, Watch, Research Online

30
Jul14

New: Free Access to 400,000 Digital Images from Metropolitan Museum of Art

Posted by: Rebecca Bailey

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Exciting news! New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art announced recently that “more than 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain works in the Museum’s world-renowned collection may be downloaded directly from the Museum’s website for non-commercial use—including in scholarly publications in any media—without permission from the Museum and without a fee. The number of available images will increase as new digital files are added on a regular basis.”

The Met calls this initiative Open Access for Scholarly Content (OASC). When searching their online image collection, look for the OASC icon, which designates images that are part of this initiative. These images may be used for non-commercial purposes, including school assignments, presentations, scholarly publishing, or personal projects. (Read more about the OASC policy in the FAQ.)

This decision by the Met follows a very welcome recent movement among galleries, libraries, archives, and museums (the so-called GLAM organizations) to make more of their digital image content freely available when possible. This benefits the organizations by increasing public awareness of and generating publicity for their collections. And of course it benefits all of us to have greater access to cultural content worldwide!

Here are some links to more such programs:

The initiative known as OpenGLAM, which is helping many museums to open up more of their content, has a longer list of these types of efforts on their website. You can learn more about OpenGLAM from their FAQ. And be sure to check out the amazing image collections listed above. Happy exploring!

Posted in: Architecture, Art, Information and Society, Read, Listen, Watch, Research Online

1
Jul14

Recommended Reading from Staff at Snell

Posted by: Nina Shah

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Nothing is better than kicking back with a good read over the summer, so some of our staff at Snell Library have compiled a list of summer reading recommendations that are sure to fit a wide range of tastes. Enjoy and happy reading!

The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis

“Extraordinary miniatures, very original, take your breath away at first reading (and the second, third…)”

Recommended by Will Wakeling, Dean of University Libraries

Find it at Snell Library

 

 

 

Southern Reach Trilogy, by Jeff Vandermeer

“These are nicely written in a creepy, weird fiction style, so they have overtones of science fiction and Southern Gothic. The unfolding mystery plot is fascinating so far, with very good, evocative writing.”

Recommended by Amanda Rust, Assistant Head of Research and Instruction

Find it at Snell Library: Annihilation & Authority
 
 

Life After Life, by Kate Atkinson

“Clever author Atkinson proposes alternative lives (and deaths) for a child born during a snowstorm in 1910.”

Recommended by Julie Jersyk, Research and Instruction Librarian

Find it at Snell Library

 

 

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, by Rachel Joyce

“Retiree Harold Fry embarks on a cross-country journey on foot to hand-deliver a letter to a dying acquaintance… ‘Harold could no longer pass a stranger without acknowledging the truth that everyone was the same, and also unique; and that this was the dilemma of being human.’”

Recommended by Ernesto Valencia, Systems Librarian

 

 

The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho

“A magical and inspiring story about navigating through life’s challenges, following your heart, and accomplishing your dreams.”

Recommended by Nina Shah, Library Development Officer

Find it at Snell Library

 

 

A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night, both by Deborah Harkness

“The first book is wonderful—so much fun—a mystery set in academia with witches and vampires and other creatures of the night! The story is fast-paced and well-executed and ends far too quickly. The second book is at least as good as the first!  Great books for the beach or a long flight to some place fun!”

Recommended by Janet Morrow, Head, Resource and Discovery Services

 

Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell

“This fascinating book is composed of long segments in the voices of six individual characters from different time periods, in totally different writing styles. Mitchell truly inhabits the main characters in each of the six segments, making them sound and feel authentic, and very different from one another. There are plenty of little overlaps and connections among the stories, too, which make for another level of enjoyment as you try to find those along the way.”

Recommended by Rebecca Bailey, Research and Instruction Librarian

Find it at Snell Library

What the Dog Saw, by Malcolm Gladwell

“Journalist Malcolm Gladwell has pieced together a collection of essays about human psychology and social behavior, many of them about sort of weird or unexpected phenomena.”

Recommended by Karen Merguerian, User Engagement and Assessment Librarian

Find it at Snell Library

 

 

Chain of Change: Struggles for Black Community Development, by Mel King

“Published in 1981, Chain of Change traces the story of the Black Community of Boston from the 1950s to the 1970s through the eyes of one of the South End’s most vocal residents, former Massachusetts State Representative Mel King. It also proposes a strategy for the future (the 1980s): a Community Development Plan that included decentralization, education, and coalition building.”

Recommended by Giordana Mecagni, Head of Archives and Special Collections

 Find it at Snell Library and other NU locations

 

Posted in: Read, Listen, Watch, Serendipity, Staff Interests

6
Mar13

Codebreakers: Makers of Modern Genetics

Posted by: Jen Ferguson

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Heredity charts I-VI: published for the Eugenics Society by George Philip & Son Ltd.

Image courtesy the Wellcome Library

Codebreakers:  Makers of Modern Genetics is a newly-launched treasure trove for fans of science, history, and of course, the history of science!

The Wellcome Library has digitized the papers of key players in genetics from the last century and made them freely available online. Works of CrickWatsonFranklinWilkins, and Haldane are all represented, to name a few. The papers include lab notebooks, sketches, articles, drafts and general correspondence. The site also contains items from the archive of the Eugenics Society, including the heredity chart shown above. In addition to these digitized artifacts, the site features digitized books and a great interactive timeline on the history of genetics.

Posted in: Biology, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Health Sciences, Read, Listen, Watch, Research Online

11
Oct12

All Shakespeare, All the Time!

Posted by: Amanda Rust

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Watch the entire BBC Shakespeare Collection in the comfort of your own home, dorm, or subway seat! We’re very excited to now own the entire BBC Shakespeare collection available online, through streaming video.

These productions include some of Britain’s most distinguished performers, and productions range from quite traditional to more adventurous:

View the plays in their entirety, or link to specific Acts for teaching and presentation.  You can also turn Closed Captioning on or off with a single click — an excellent way to see the specifics of Shakespeare’s language unfold before your eyes. We also have the entire collection on DVD, so tell us what you think.

Posted in: English and American Literature, Read, Listen, Watch, Research Online, Theater