Category Archives: Feature Articles

What to read this month

 

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With the weather turning cooler, I want to highlight some fiction (and one memoir) books in our New and Noteworthy and Current Literature collections to inspire you to curl up with a blanket and hot beverage of your choice.

  1. The shepherd’s crown by Terry Pratchett.  Pick up the final novel of Terry Pratchett’s classic Discworld series and be transported to a comic fantasy world.  Learn more about the characters of Discworld on his official website.  You might also enjoy this recent post from io9 to help you dive in.
  2. Almost famous women: stories by Megan Mayhew Bergman.  Dig into a collection of short stories about intriguing lesser-known women in history.  You’ll find stories about conjoined twins, a cross-dressing oil heiress, a daredevil motorcyclist, and the illegitimate daughter of Lord Byron.  You can find reviews here and here.
  3. Furiously happy : {a funny book about horrible things} by Jenny Lawson.  Jenny Lawson, also known as The Bloggess, has a written an honest, funny, and inspiring book about her struggles with mental illness.  Here’s a description from an Entertainment Weekly review: “Her second book Furiously Happy is a firsthand account of living with mental illness, inflected with the wonderfully strange and frequently inappropriate dark humor you might expect from a woman who opts to put small taxidermied animals on her book covers.”
  4. Miss Emily by Nuala O’Connor.  If you enjoyed Longbourn and Mrs. Poe, you might want to pick up this novel about Emily Dickinson told through the eyes of an Irish maid.  As described in this Washington Post review, this  “lovely novel, ‘Miss Emily,’ immerses us in the day-to-day drama of a fictional, spirited Irish maid who comes to work for the Dickinsons of Amherst in 1866 and stirs up their reclusive poet-in-residence. Told in alternating chapters by the title character and her maid, it pulls us in from its first limpid lines and then detonates with an explosion of power — much like Emily Dickinson’s poems.”
  5. Kitchens of the great Midwest: a novel by J. Ryan Stradal will probably make you hungry, but you may also just enjoy this novel about a chef with a once-in-a-generation palate.   You can read more about this book herehere, and here.

History Hackathon – a collaborative happening

Students in Rubenstein Reading Room

What is a History Hackathon?

The term “Hackathon” traditionally refers to an event in which computer programmers collaborate intensively on software projects. But Duke University Libraries and the History Department are putting a historical twist on their approach to the Hackathon phenomenon. In this case, the History Hackathon is a contest for undergraduate student teams to research, collaborate, and create projects inspired by the resources available in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library collections. Projects may include performances, essays, websites, infographics, lectures, podcasts, and more. A panel of experts will serve as judges and rank the top three teams. Cash Prizes will be awarded to the winning teams.

The History Hackathon will take place over a 72-hour period from October 23-25, in the Rubenstein Library and The Edge.  All the  guidelines, rules, and details may be found at the History Hackathon: a Collaborative Happening  site.Students in the Edge

  • When:  Friday, October 23rd to
    Sunday, October 25th

http://sites.duke.edu/historyhackathon/register/

Contact : HistoryHackathon@duke.edu


Sponsored by the Duke History Department,  the Duke University Libraries, the David M. Rubenstein Library, and the Duke University Undergraduate Research Support Office.

Contributor: Susannah Roberson

 

 

What to read this month?

newandnoteworthy1

I am starting a new feature where I will be highlighting some of the newest books in our New and Noteworthy collection.  Here are five books I think you should check out!

  1. The Altruistic Brain: How We are Naturally Good by Donald W. Pfaff.  According to a recent review in Frontiers in Psychology, ” Pfaff’s writing is very accessible to the non-specialist, whenever he employs technical terms and concepts from neuroscience, genetics, biology, or anthropology he makes sure to at least briefly introduce them to the reader. Much more important than the style in which it is written, the book provides one of the first—if not the very first—compilation of evidence from primary neuroscience research in favor of such a universal altruistic predisposition.”
  2. The book of Phoenix: A Novel by Nnedi Okorafor, whose previous novel Who Fears Death won the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel.  You can read reviews for this book here and here.
  3. The Girl from Krakow by Duke University’s own Alexander Rosenberg.  As described by a reviewer on Historical Novel Society, “novels like The Girl from Krakow are important because they remind us that no lie – no matter how white – no secret – no matter how small – comes without consequences.”
  4. Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America by Ari Berman.  With several important elections on the horizon, this is a topic worth exploring.  You can find reviews and interviews  in the Chicago Tribune, NPR Books, and Rolling Stone.
  5. How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success by Julie Lythcott-Haims.  As described in a review in the New York Times, “Lythcott-Haims’s central message remains worthwhile: When parents laugh and enjoy the moment but also teach the satisfaction of hard work, when they listen closely but also give their children space to become who they are, they wind up with kids who know how to work hard, solve problems and savor the moment, too.”

 

 

The First-Year Library Experience

Duke Libraries – Here to Help You

 

Lilly Library on East Campus
Lilly Library on East Campus

When is the library open? How do I find a book? Where do I print?*

Duke University’s newest students can find the answers to these questions (and more!) on the Library’s First-Year Library Services portal page.

Each August, a new class of undergraduates arrives in Durham ready to immerse themselves in the Duke Community.   Duke University Libraries serve as the core of intellectual life on campus. On East Campus particularly, the Lilly and Music Libraries have the unique opportunity to introduce our newest “Dukies” to the array of Library resources and research services available.

To help navigate the vast Library resources, we’ve created a portal especially for First-Year students. Through this portal page, new students (and even some not-so-new) can discover all that the Duke University Libraries offer:

Perkins-reading roomQuick Facts:  about collections and loan policies
Where:  to study, print, and … eat!
How:  to find and check out books & material, and get…
Help!:  Meet the  “who” – Librarians, Specialists, & Residence Hall Librarians
Research 101:  how to navigate the Research Process
Citation 101:  how to cite using recommended  styles
*And when is the Library open?
Find the answer in our list of the Top 12 Questions, developed with input from First-Year Library Advisory Board students.

Here’s to a great Fall Semester!

 

 

 

Step into the Spotlight: Dance Films

Dance on film: movies to get your groove on
Step into the Spotlight: Dance Films

The 2015 season of the American Dance Festival has now kicked off with fabulous performances through July 25th.

To help you get your  groove on, check out dance-themed highlights from Lilly Library’s film/video collection in the Lilly Video Spotlight: Dance on Film.

If our spotlight whets your appetite, explore Lilly Library’s large selection of dance DVDs to keep you tripping the light fantastic all summer long.  Don’t feel like tripping the light fantastic with Lilly?  The ADF Archives serve as an excellent resource for dance historians, and  this summer the International Screendance Festival hosts screenings at the Nasher Museum of Art.

Updated from a June 2014 post authored by Danette Pachtner,  Librarian for Film, Video & Digital Media and Women’s Studies

360 Degrees of Art: An Edgefest Recap

 

Starry
Starry Night

 

Last Thursday, we played host to Edgefest, an arts extravaganza that took advantage of the Libraries’ newest space, The Edge, by filling the walls with art. There was an amazing turnout, with hundreds of students flocking to sample the smorgasbord of tasty treats (everything from mocktails to cupcakes and mushroom sliders) and staying to add their own piece of whiteboard art.

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Just a few of the amazing creations we saw at Edgefest.

The walls of the Edge were covered from top to bottom with art–both doodles and masterpieces alike.  Duke’s unofficial artists had no shortage of creativity; from Van Gogh’s Starry Night to a full color map of Durham, Pacman to Pokémon; we saw all kinds of creations.

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The Poetry Fox types up a new poem for his latest patron.

The Poetry Fox (a local Durham writer who writes on the spot poetry based on a single word) cranked out poems all evening for many eager poetry enthusiasts. Student performers, including Inside Joke, #busstopguy, and DUI, entertained artists throughout the evening.

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A whiteboard rendering of a vintage book plate.

 

What is a vital Lilly Library Resource?

Meet Lilly’s Class of 2015 – part IV

If you’ve been in Lilly Library  over the past four years, chances are you’ve seen our four seniors: NatalieSteven, Victor and Kenai.  All of our seniors  have worked at Lilly Library since they arrived as wide-eyed First-Year students on East Campus way back in August of 2011. Get to know our seniors in these profiles, and you’ll appreciate them as much we do.

Lilly Student Assistant Senior Kenai McFadden
Lilly Student Assistant Senior Kenai McFadden

Note: this article was published in the 2014 fall semester.  With Commencement 2015 in May,  reacquaint yourselves with Kenai, one of our treasured Lilly Library Class of 2015.

Lilly is at the heart of East Campus, the First-Year Campus for Duke undergraduates.  To serve our  community, Lilly Library remains open for 129 hours  each week! Our student assistants are an essential element in maintaining a high level of service, and we want to introduce you to one of our “Class of 2015” – seniors who have worked in Lilly Library throughout their four years at Duke.

Meet Kenai McFadden:
Hometown
: Orangeburg, South Carolina
Family: I have 3 siblings – one older brother, a younger brother, and a little sister
Academics: Pre-med, majoring in Chemistry with a minor in Psychology
Activities on campus: Vice President of the Class of 2015; ​FAC Board Member; President of The Inferno; ​Line Monitor
Favorite off-campus activity: Dancing at Cuban Revolution
Favorite on-campus activity: Cheering for Duke Athletics
Favorite on-campus eatery: Pitchfork Provisions
Favorite off-campus eatery: Sushi Love

Kenai at work
Top: Kenai, with his “assistant” Steven offering support Bottom: Kenai helping a student

Somehow, while the list above gives us basic information about Kenai, we believe there is so much more to reveal. Kenai is lively and engaging, so we asked another Lilly student assistant,  Kelly Tomins  (Lilly Class of 2016 ) to delve further and ask questions from one student to another.  Their interview offers a perspective beyond the facts – enjoy!

What Is your spirit animal? Explain.
I would have to go with a toy poodle. Toy poodles are not shy, have insane amounts of energy, are one of the smartest breeds of dog, and are agreeable with everyone. If only I could also be so easy to love…

If you could be any famous internet cat, which would you be?
NO

What are your plans for after graduation?
I’m a pre-medical student taking a gap year. I would love to continue volunteering as I apply to medical school, 

If you could have a sleepover in any of the 12 branches of the Duke Library system, which would you choose?
Definitely Ford or the Law Library because I’ve never visited them and it’d be fun to explore them at night.

What’s the strangest book you’ve come across in Lilly?
Lilly is the art library at Duke, so I’ve come across various dirty comic collections, abstract art styles, and books on ridiculous theories. It’s hard to choose just one. You’d be surprised at how many crazy books are in the stacks.

What is your favorite work duty at Lilly?
Book deliveries. It’s nice to deliver books for faculty to the various academic departments on East, especially when it’s nice outside. I can put in my music on, enjoy the weather, and get a great workout carrying books.

How will your time at Lilly help you in your future pursuits?
Customer service is very relevant to pretty much any field in which you’re working with people. We’ve had some tough patrons come through Lilly, and I feel equipped to handle all sorts of people after working closing shifts and during finals week. I also became pretty good at suggesting DVDs for patrons to watch.

What will you miss most about Lilly when you graduate?
I’ll miss working with my boss, Yunyi Wang, and my coworkers behind the desk. Some of my best friends at Duke I’ve met through Lilly, and I love Yunyi! She’s like my campus mom. 😀

What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done in Lilly?
One time I took about 2 floors worth of books and shifted them one shelf – from one floor to the next. Crazy exciting stuff. It took the entire summer.

Have you ever locked anyone in the library when you work the closing shift? If not, were there any close calls?
I’ve had two or three close calls for sure, and one time I apparently locked someone in, but I don’t believe it. People get locked in pretty often though, so I don’t feel bad even if I did.

Thanks to Kenai, and to Kelly, for mentoring our newer student assistants and for keeping Lilly Library such an inviting and lively hub on East Campus!

Meet Lilly’s Class of 2015

Lilly Library’s “Final Four” – Our Class of 2015

If you’ve been in Lilly Library  over the past four years, chances are you’ve seen our four seniors: Natalie,  Steven, Victor and Kenai.  All of our seniors  have worked at Lilly Library since they arrived as wide-eyed First-Year students on East Campus way back in August of 2011. Get to know our seniors in these profiles, and you’ll appreciate them as much we do.

Natalie Hall:

Natalie at desk
Lilly Library’s Senior Natalie at the main desk
  • Hometown: Lansdale, PA (right outside of Philadelphia)
  • Academics: Public Policy Major
  • Activities on campus: Duke Chorale, and President of The Girls’ Club (a mentoring program serving middle school girls in Durham)
  • Favorite campus eatery/food: The Divinity School Cafe
  • Favorite off-campus eatery/food: Dame’s Chicken and Waffles
  • Hobbies or dream vacations: Hobbies are reading graphic novels, finding new music, watching YouTube videos; dream vacations in Istanbul, Hong Kong, and Prague

Q:  Why have you worked at Lilly Library for all 4 years?
A: ​I’ve chosen to work at Lilly for 4 years because of its atmosphere.  The patrons and staff at Lilly create a space where you can relax, be friendly, and open.  Although traveling from West can be a drag sometimes (especially with less buses on weekends), it’s always worth it!  Talking with staff, being with other Lilly student workers, and patrons is always a pleasure.

Q: What is your favorite part about working at Lilly? Least favorite?
A: I think my favorite part of working at Lilly is how friendly everyone is.  Rain or shine, busy or slow day, patrons and staff here are respectful and patient.  I don’t think there’s anything about Lilly that I particularly dislike!

Q: What is your favorite work duty at Lilly? Least favorite duty?

Yunyi and natalie
Lilly’s Head of Access Services Yunyi with Natalie

A: My favorite duty is probably processing books–it’s a time where I can recharge.  My least favorite would have to be shelf-reading…sorry, Yunyi!

Q: What is one memory from Lilly that you will never forget?
A: I studied Chinese to fulfill my language requirement, so practicing speaking Chinese with Yunyi is something I’ll remember always.  Out of nowhere, Yunyi hurls questions at me in Chinese, and I often find  myself scrambling to respond!  Even so, I really appreciate her help–it definitely made me more comfortable in the classroom.

Q: What does a typical weekend shift look like for you? What  shift do you like most?
A: The typical weekend shift is pretty laid back.  I’ll first go to the Regulator Bookstore on 9th street to pick up the New York Times for Lilly.  Then I’ll come back to the library and work at the desk for most of the time.  I enjoy weekday shifts the most, because I feel like they are just busy enough where I don’t feel too overwhelmed.

Q: What is the funniest thing that happened to you recently?
A: At Lilly, the funniest thing that has happened to me recently is  getting to know our weekend security guard Patricia (she usually is at the desk on Saturdays).  Our conversations always make me laugh–last weekend she was helping me online shop for a graduation dress, and it was a lot of fun.

Q: What is your impression of Lilly’s film collection?  Any recommendations?
A: My overall impression of Lilly’s film collection is that it is very eclectic!  If I were to suggest a film, I would say you should check out the documentary 20 Feet from Stardom.

Q: What are your plans for after graduation?
A:  After graduation I plan on either participating in Teach for America, or working more policy/research orientated job in Washington, DC.

Q: What will you miss most about Lilly?
A: The staff, and just the feel of being there.

Q: How will your time at Lilly help you in your future pursuits?
A: My time at Lilly will help my with my multitasking skills, organization, and learning how to help people with any questions they have in a timely manner

Q: What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done in Lilly?
A: Nothing too crazy…but if you are feeling tired and need a nap, don’t rule out the staff room couch (of course, never during your shift!)

Graduation in May means Lilly Library will say farewell to  Natalie and our other seniors, treasured members of our Lilly “family”. We appreciate her good work and dedication to Lilly and wish her the best!