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The Highlighter: Black Villanova Oral History Project

Welcome to “The Highlighter,” where we’ll be exploring the various new and old services and resources available through the Falvey!


Did you know that Falvey has a digital library? Did you know that it hosts various exhibits? Did you know that one of those exhibits is a Black Villanova Oral History Project? Well now you know all those things!

On Wednesday, Nov. 15, Falvey Memorial Library will be co-sponsoring a talk by Tom Mogan, Dean of Students at Boston College, tilted “The Social Significance of Villanova Athletes During the Civil Rights Movement.” Mogan’s dissertation on the same topic formed the foundation for the digital library page as it exists today.

This week’s highlighter is about bringing some of these resources to you in preparation for that event:

  1. The Digital Library Page: Black Villanova Oral History Project
  2. One of the exhibit’s histories on Dr. Edward Collymore, ’59; it is, as far as I can tell, the earliest oral record on the page.
  3. Another of the exhibit’s histories: Normadene Murphy, ’76 – the only woman to feature on the page.
  4. Mogan’s dissertation, titled “The Limits to Catholic Racial Liberalism: The Villanova Encounter with Race, 1940-1985.”
  5. A couple of pertinent news stories from the Washington Post and the Daily News. accessible via ProQuest Newsstream.

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    Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.


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The Highlighter: Banned Books Available for Borrowing

Welcome to “The Highlighter,” where we’ll be exploring the various new and old services and resources available through the Falvey!


In the past, we’ve brought you staff-picks of banned books, displays on banned books, topics in banned books, and even film-adapted banned books. With the topic of censorship taking over our Twitter feeds, however, I’d like to take the present “Highlighter” to remind you of the cultural import of banned books and tell you where they might be found in the library!

Here’s the thing with banned books: we often get a kick out of “why” a book was banned: “Harry Potter” for promoting witchcraft, for example, or “The Lord of the Rings,” for its Satanic elements. The list goes on and on, really. “Brideshead Revisited” was banned for elements of homosexuality – poor Anthony B-B-Blanche! – and “Fahrenheit 451,” itself an indictment on censorship, was censored for foul language.

If you are at all like Hunter here, you’re thinking “William! Why are you giving me more reading?” But stick with me; I promise it’s worth it!

In the curiousness (and even downright hilarity) of these accusations, we often forget to take the moment to think about how others might see things. Maybe it’s easy for us to see that “Harry Potter” is about friendship and coming of age, or simple for us to see the greater, yet fictional, powers at work in “The Lord of the Rings.” But maybe for others that distinction is not so black-and-white.

No book ought ever be banned. This week, as we mark ALA’s Banned Books Week to celebrate, “the freedom to read,” let us remember the great freedoms afforded to us through our Villanovan education. Let’s not forget to read these books critically, and, instead of laughing off those who have banned them before, let’s learn a thing or two about “how” others think. Perhaps a bit of old-fashioned well-rounded thought will go a long way as far as ensuring that our cherished tales of the future remain on the bookshelves for all to enjoy.

Me settling in with one of our banned books.

Here’s some of my favorites and where you’ll find them in the Falvey!

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” by J.K. Rowling – Why not start from the beginning and give the whole series another read?

Brideshead Revisited” by Evelyn Waugh – Melodramatic yet deeply profound, “Brideshead…” keeps you asking for more.

Watchmen” by Alan Moore – A comic? Yes. Comical? No.

Carrie” by Stephen King – Decades before my college roommates hung the creepy “Carrie” film poster in my dorm room, King wrote the original as a bone-chilling yet touchingly sad novel.

Lord of the Flies” by William Golding – My middle school teachers put this book in the hands of an all-boys class perhaps too soon; we admired the boys for their state-building acumen – not the case, now that I’m a bit older (and at least slightly more mature).


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Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.


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Tuesday Highlighter: Happy (Belated) National Read an eBook Day!

Welcome to “The Highlighter,” where we’ll be exploring the various new and old services and resources available through the Falvey!


 

Yesterday, Sept. 18, marked National Read an eBook Day. Last year, we celebrated the day by bringing you some recommendations on which eBooks to read. This year, recognizing the quantity and quality of eBooks available through the Falvey, I dug a little deeper. Description Management Librarian David Burke provided me with the just the information I needed:

WR: Just how many eBooks are available to those with access to the Falvey’s catalog and databases?

DB: We have access to nearly 300,000 unique eBooks available through several platforms and publishers.

Are these mostly contemporary novels and academic journals?

They come in many different types.  Some collections consist of digital facsimiles of old published works—for example, Early English Books Online is a collections of books, pamphlets, and other primary source material published in the late 1400’s (about when printing came to England) to 1700.

David Burke, Description Management Librarian and knower of all things eBook -related at the Falvey.

Are most eBooks, then, just digital versions of physical books whose copyrights have elapsed?

Well, others are published collections of specific publishers, including Wiley, the University of Oxford Press, and Springer (from this last we have over 37,000 titles).  And there are platforms featuring titles from various publishers including JSTOR, Ebook Central (a subsidiary of ProQuest), and Project Muse.

Are most historical in nature?

Subjects covered by these ebooks are all across the board, and vary from 2 page pamphlets to multi-volume encyclopedia to novels.

New hobbies!

Many historical books have been converted to the eBook medium for ease of access!

Can I access some of the materials in our own Special Collections as eBooks?

Of course! We also have our locally-digitized collections of eBooks within the Digital Library, especially our dime novel collection.


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Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 


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Tuesday Highlighter: Novel Adaptations

Welcome to “The Highlighter,” where we’ll be exploring the various new and old services and resources available through the Falvey!


“The Highlighter” typically focuses on updates either interior to the library or updates accessible through the library, but this week I’ll be writing about something a little different: adaptations. As it turns out, some of our favorite books here at the Falvey will hit the screen at the end of this year and beginning of next. Here’s our top five, the book versions of which happen to be available through the catalog:

1. “It” by Stephen King:

Cover to Stephen King’s “It.”

Already grossing nearly $200 million worldwide, “It” has taken horror films to new heights, and industry insiders are already talking about how its September release may indeed sway how studios approach marketing their films in the future. The story of Pennywise the clown, of course, comes from a Stephen King novel of the same name released in 1986.

You can find it through the catalog here. We recommend taking advantage of Falvey’s 24/7 hours pilot and reading it in the dark of night.

2. “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls:

“The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls cover.

This 2009 OneBook Villanova selection has also already been released. In theatres now, “The Glass Castle” tells the harrowing story of Jeannette Walls’ own childhood and adolescence of extreme poverty. Originally a memoir, the filmic adaptation stars Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson. Make sure to bring your tissues for this one, and get your inner-social-justice-warrior persona geared up and ready to go.

3. “The Vietnam War: An Intimate History” by Geoffrey C. Ward:

A page within the companion volume to “The Vietnam War: An Intimate History.” (Courtesy of Google Books’ preview of the same.)

Starting this Sunday on PBS, “The Vietnam War: An Intimate History” will be a 10-part series by esteemed director Ken Burns. The idea of the project is to tell stories of the Vietnam War that differ from the standard narrative. This one is less of a strict “adaptation,” and more of a companion reader, but you won’t want to miss out! Geoffrey C. Ward wrote the screenplay and companion book, which you won’t find on the stacks in the Falvey, but it is available through Inter-library Loan.

4. “Looking for Alaska” by John Green:

“Looking for Alaska” 10th Anniversary Cover. (courtesy of johngreenbooks.com)

Break out another box of tissues for this John Green young adult novel. If the central drama of this tearjerker does not evoke strong emotions for you, then I simply don’t know what will. It doesn’t look like we’ll get to see this film before the new year, but that gives you plenty of time to check out the novel and give it a read before testing it against the adaptation.

5. “Murder on the Orient Express” by Agatha Christie:

“Murder on the Orient Express” cover, courtesy of Wikipedia.

A star-studded cast, including Penelope Cruz, Johnny Depp, and Daisy Ridley, will bring this Agatha Christie novel to life on-screen in November. Before then, you can check out our copy of the novel (which includes another four novels!). You should also be aware, however, that this is not the first adaptation of this installment of the Hercule Poirot series. It came to life three times before on screen and once as a BBC Radio series.

These are the adaptations we’re looking forward to the most at the Falvey! Which adaptations did we miss, ’Nova Nation? Are you Wildcats looking forward to seeing any of your favorite books on the big screen this year? Let us know in the comments below or via Twitter and Facebook.


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Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.


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Tuesday Highlighter: Chicago Manual of Style, Edition 17

Welcome to “The Highlighter,” where we’ll be exploring the various new and old services and resources available through the Falvey!


“Did you know that US lexicography even had a seamy underbelly?” Asked esteemed author David Foster Wallace in the intro of his famous essay Authority and American Usage. This essay, released in review/commentary of Bryan A. Garner’s A Dictionary of Modern American Usage, introduced the lay public to the nuanced debate of prescriptive versus descriptive grammar, conservative versus liberal usage, and the term SNOOT.

With the release of the new “Chicago Manual of Style, 17th Edition,” I thought it might be important to revisit one of the key questions DFW raised in his essay, not least of all because Garner himself is credited with writing full chapters of the style manual. In his (in)famous piece, DFW asks, “It’s the millennium, post-Everything: Whence the authority to make any sort of credible Appeal for SWE at all?”

The cover of the new “Chicago Manual of Style.” (Courtesy of the CMOS website, linked below.)

The answer to DFW’s question, it so turns out, is the 17th edition of the “Chicago Manual of Style.” The new edition contains updated rules on “etc,” bureaucratese, and capitalization of internet. It also contains a series of established SWE (Standard Written English) rules, such as clarifications on gerunds and infinitives (though Garner doesn’t cover split infinitives here!).

The most prominent change of all might be the elimination of “ibid.” or “ibidem” for citations of the same source.

Best of all, the interactive, online edition available through the Falvey contains each of these rules in discrete segments that make searching through the new rules navigable and manageable. Take a look at the full list of updates, available here.

(For any assistance with understanding these changes, reach out to Director of Academic Integration and History, Sociology & Criminology Liaison Librarian Jutta Seibert.)


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Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.


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Tuesday Highlighter: Structural Adjustments

Hi! Welcome to my first Tuesday Morning Highlighter. I’ll be stepping in for my friend and esteemed colleague Alice Bampton, who will be retiring later this week. Congratulations, Alice!

My first order of business is to update you on some of the changes that have occurred at the library over the summer. I don’t mean service changes this time, but actual physical changes that have happened here within the building. Our biggest changes have happened in the Learning Commons on the second floor.

Remember the Learning Commons? It looks a little something like this…

Well, there has only been one minor structural change, but let’s get to the major things first – a big, warm, Falvey welcome to the Center for Access Success and Achievement. You can now find CASA in Room 211 on the second floor of the Falvey Memorial Library. With a stated purpose of aiding “underrepresented, first generation, and Pell Grant eligible students,” this graduate assistant thinks that CASA makes an excellent addition to the Falvey family.

If you’re doing the math, you’ll realize that CASA has taken the room that used to be the Mathematics Learning Resource Center. Don’t panic, all you long dividers and promising, young physicists! The MLRC has moved directly across the hall to occupy Room 204. (The smart, suave structural engineers of the MLRC even knocked down one of our walls and invaded the former Room 207; enjoy the extra space, math whizzes!)

Here’s a photo of CASA’s new prime real estate.

Here are the minor things to note: Learning and Support Services remains in Room 212, where you can stop by for any learning and study skill resources you may require. The Writing Center is also still in Room 212. Remember, though, Room 212 is not a mechanic’s shop for just your latest assignment; they look to create “better writers, not better texts,” through a “collaborative effort” with students.

Now I must point out one small change from the map above. See that tiny space between the stairs at the very top of the map and the entrance to the Dugan Polk Family Reading Room? Well, we’ve built a beautiful conference room and a couple of offices there. Stop by and check them out!

Those new offices by the Dugan Polk Family Reading Room. Office occupants and room numbers TBD.


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Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant in the Communication and Marketing Dept. at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University. (Graphic courtesy of TechDev and photos courtesy of yours truly.)

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The Highlighter: A Christmas present – Christmases Past

HIGHLIGHTER-PRO

Photos from Falvey Christmas parties featuring staff we remember fondly:

For “How to” videos about the Library, click the “Help” button on Falvey’s homepage.


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The Highlighter: Need a quiet place to study?

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This video highlights quiet study spaces in the Library:

To access the library’s “How to” videos, click the “Help” button on Falvey’s homepage.


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The Highlighter: Find Your "Force"… at Falvey

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For a Star Wars themed promotion of Falvey Memorial Library, please click the following:

For “How to” videos about the Library, click the “Help” button on Falvey’s homepage.


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The Highlighter: St. Augustine’s "Confessions" Comes to Students’ Mobile Devices

HIGHLIGHTER-PRO

Villanova University students studying St. Augustine’s Confessions may now benefit from an interactive digital app for their Apple or Android devices. This innovation provides several new ways to read and analyze the Confessions. Features include—

interactive digital sourcebook—images, maps, timeline of Augustine’s life and journeys

audio and visual components

note-taking facility—annotate the text, jot down personal reflections

expert commentary and explanatory notes—by Villanova professors and Augustine scholars from across the country

recordings—by Villanova faculty and by University President the Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA, PhD, ’75 CLAS.

University professionals from the Augustine and Culture Seminar Program (ACSP), the Department of Computing Sciences, The Augustinian Institute at Villanova, and University Information Technologies (UNIT) collaborated to create this powerful app that expands students’ ability to understand and analyze the text (See press release for details).
Augustine's Confessions app
Is this app available to anyone, only for the Villanova University community, or only for students taking the ACS program? Noël Dolan, director, academic learning communities, ACSP, explains, “Although we designed with a Villanova first-year student as our goal audience, the app is indeed for everyone.”

How can people get/purchase it? Dolan further explains, “It may be purchased from the App Store for iPad and iPhone, and Google Play for Android. Links to those sites may be found on our homepage.”


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Last Modified: December 1, 2015