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Bloomsbury Cultural Histories

By Jutta Seibert

Bloomsbury’s Cultural Histories are multi-volume sets that survey the social and cultural construction of specific subjects through the ages. All volumes in a set explore the same themes. For example, the Cultural History of Western Empires consists of six volumes covering antiquity, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, the Age of Enlightenment, the Age of Empire, and the modern age.

Each volume in the set includes a chapter on race written by an expert in the field. Compare the chapter on race by Cord Whitaker from the volume covering the Middle Ages to the chapter on race by Vanita Seth from the volume covering the Age of Enlightenment to gain a better understanding of what the series has to offer.

The digital platform currently comprises 24 subjects ranging from animals to work. Recently added subjects include comedy, education, home, memory, and peace. Color, democracy, fairy tales, genocide, medicine, and sport are among the subjects currently in production for the digital archive.

The collection also includes a small selection of cultural and social history books from Bloomsbury Academic, Berg, and Continuum that complement. Among them are David Sutton’s exploration of the relationship between food and memory in Remembrance of Repasts: An Anthropology of Food and Memory (Berg, 2001) and Mark M. Smith’s Sensory History (Berg, 2017), to name just two examples.

Visual resources from the Wellcome Collection, the Rijksmuseum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art round out the collection, which also includes an interactive timeline and lesson plans for the undergraduate classroom. Remote access is provided through the Library’s Databases A-Z list under B.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Modernism Explained

By Jutta Seibert

Scholars interested in modernism will be delighted to learn that they now have electronic access to The Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism (REM) through Falvey Memorial Library. Modernism is an umbrella term for a hodgepodge of movements in literature and the arts, among them expressionism, dadaism, cubism, social realism, surrealism, futurism, and Bauhaus. Modernist thinking and ideas influenced architecture, dance, theater, film, literature, music, philosophy, and the visual arts from the late 19th century until the middle of the 20th century.

All the articles in the Encyclopedia are written by subject specialists and include recommended reading lists as well as cross-references to related content. For example, the article about Russian Modernism includes links to articles about representative Russian artists together with links to overview articles about Social Realism and Symbolism. A scholar looking up Entartete Kunst will find two overview articles on Modernism in Europe and Expressionism, five topical articles including one on Entartete Kunst, and three biographical articles on artists associated with the movement.

REM’s global interdisciplinary coverage is particularly noteworthy. Contents are indisputably skewed towards Europe, but there is a fair amount of global coverage. Articles about literature and the visual arts clearly dominate content about the other arts. REM’s landing page links out to popular and new content. Modernism in the Middle East and Arab World is currently featured as the most read article. If you would like to learn more about REM, take the online tour.

Related resources:

Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Jewish Studies Classics in the Falvey Collection

By Jutta Seibert

Against considerable odds the Littman Library of Jewish Civilization has flourished since its launch in 1965. In an article published in 1982 in Jewish Historical Studies, Louis Littman, the series’ founder, recounted his goals for the series and the obstacles he faced in realizing them.

Littman, who grew up in Brighton in the thirties, blamed the relative ignorance of the Jewish intellectual tradition among British Jews on a lack of English translations of classical Hebrew scholarship. He hoped to change the status quo by commissioning translations and publishing Hebrew scholarship in English in a series dedicated to the memory of his father.

However, publishers showed little interest in his project as the series was not expected to be a commercial success and qualified translators were few and far between. It took considerable effort to get the project off the ground.

The first book in the series was a small volume of Hebrew poems from medieval Spain. On its jacket, Littman described the scope of his project:

“The aim of the Littman Library of Jewish Civilization is to present to the English-speaking public a selection of some of the finest products of the Jewish religious and literary genius. It is hoped that this Library will help to encourage a revival of interest in a religious and literary Heritage, much of which has been virtually closed to those unfamiliar with the language in which it is enshrined.”

In 2017, the Littman Library entered a publishing partnership with Liverpool University Press and launched its first e-books. The Villanova community acquired electronic access to the series through JSTOR. A subset of books from the series is also available in print.

Related resources:


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Not Just for Fashionistas: The Berg Fashion Library

By Jutta Seibert

Fashion touches our lives in ways small and large. It is an outlet for creative expression and an instrument of compliance. Fashion and design shape the mundane and elevate the holy and extraordinary. Just think about the conspicuous vestments worn to celebrate mass or the extraordinary garments we choose to celebrate special milestones in our lives.

The Berg Fashion Library (BFL) is a testament to fashion’s ubiquitous influence. The collection features a wide range of multidisciplinary monographs and essays that touch on all aspects of dress and fashion worldwide. Titles that discuss the constraints of fashion include Craik’s Uniforms Exposed: From Conformity to Transgression (Berg, 2005) and Tynan and Godson’s Uniform: Clothing and Discipline in the Modern World (Bloomsbury, 2019). Hume’s The Religious Life of Dress: Global Fashion and Faith (Bloomsbury, 2013) explores the role of religious apparel. In Wedding Dress Across Cultures (Berg, 2013) Foster and Johnson present a rich collection of essays on the role of wedding garments worldwide. Recently added titles include Turney’s Fashion Crimes: Dressing for Deviance (Bloomsbury, 2020) and Turner’s The Sport Shoe: A History from Field to Fashion (Bloomsbury, 2019)


The Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion is one of the cornerstones of the collection together with the second edition of Classic and Modern Writings on Fashion, a collection of seminal writings on fashion including influential thinkers such as Roland Barthes, Pierre Bourdieu, Fernand Braudel, Johan Huizinga, Georg Simmel, and Thorstein Veblen. A selection of carefully chosen images from museums and exhibits round out the collection together with lesson plans and bibliographic guides.

Remote access is provided through the Library’s Databases A-Z list under B.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Ogonek: Russia’s Answer to Life Magazine (on trial until October 2)

By Jutta Seibert

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:%D0%9E%D0%B3%D0%BE%D0%BD%D0%B5%D0%BA_1923-01_%D1%80%D0%B5%D0%BF%D1%80%D0%B8%D0%BD%D1%82_1993.pdf

Ogonek 1, October, 1923.
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Falvey Memorial Library offers trial access to Ogonek (Огонёк), one of the oldest illustrated weeklies in Russian language. Strictly speaking, the trial encompasses two digital archives.

Villanova faculty, staff, and students have temporary access to the digital archive of the original Ogonek, which was published in St. Petersburg from 1899 to 1918, and to the digital archive of a later magazine by the same name published in Moscow from 1923 to 2020. The two magazines have little in common apart from title and format. Nevertheless, the 1923 reincarnation claimed descent, as can be seen on the title page of its first issue. A hand turns several pages of a bound volume, thus skipping from an image of devastation with the year 1919 marked on the page to a visual representation of a bright new day in 1923. The little flame in the upper left hand corner of the image is a visual representation of Ogonek, the Russian word for spark or little flame.

The original Ogonek started out as a weekly supplement to Birzhevye vedomosti, a newspaper published in St. Petersburg. The magazine was an immediate success and was soon published independently. The use of two-tone printing and photography set the magazine apart from its competition. It was estimated that the magazine reached around 6 million readers at its peak before the Bolshevik revolution disrupted publication in 1899.

Nearly a quarter century later, M.E. Kol’tsov rekindled the little flame in Moscow. The new Ogonek had little in common with its predecessor aside from its format and name. But, like its predecessor, it rapidly grew in popularity, despite its reputation as a Soviet propaganda organ and the fall from grace of its founding editor.

Over the next 97 years Ogonek chronicled life in the Soviet Union. The magazine survived the dissolution of the Union following glasnost and perestroika. Its circulation increased dramatically after 1986 as the magazine advocated for political reform. Like many other magazines and newspapers worldwide, Ogonek did not survive increasing competition from online news and had to close its doors in 2020.

Ogonek is an excellent resource for anyone interested in daily life in the USSR. Although the images and texts offered in the magazine are mostly representations of an idealized version of Russian daily life, much can be deduced from a close study of the magazine. Both Ogonek archives are available from East View. The search interface accepts Romanized (transliterated) Russian and Cyrillic search terms. Cyrillic search terms can be entered with an integrated Cyrillic keyboard. The Cyrillic keyboard available in the search interface for the original Ogonek includes old Russian characters as the content of this archive was written using pre-reform Russian orthography. Those interested in delving deeper into the history of Ogonek should read Celebrating Ogonek, 1899-2020, an article recently published in the journal Kritika: Explorations in Russian & Eurasian History (vol. 22, no. 2, 2021).

Russian news sources available through Falvey Library include:
  • Ogonek Digital Archive, 1899-1918 (East View)
    Offers digital access to all surviving issues of Ogonek (Огонёк), an influential illustrated weekly published in St. Petersburg as a supplement to the newspaper Birzhevye vedomosti until 1902 after which it was published independently.
    Trial access until Oct. 2, 2021.
  • Ogonek Digital Archive, 1923-2020 (East View)
    Presents the complete archive of Ogonek (Огонёк), one of the oldest illustrated weeklies published in Moscow (Russia) from 1923 to 2020. Chronicles the Soviet era in its entirety and offers an unparalleled visual record of life in the Soviet Union. Features well-known journalists, writers, photographers, and artists. Similar in its impact to Life, the US weekly magazine.
    Trial access until Oct. 2, 2021.
  • Moscow News Digital Archive (East View)
    Features the longest running English-language newspaper published in Russia from 1930 to 2014.
  • Current Digest of the Russian Press, 1949- (East View)
    Offers a selection of Russian-language news in translation.
  • Imperial Russian Newspapers (East View)
    Presents open access to selected Russian newspapers published between 1782 and 1917. Includes Birzhevye vedomosti the original home of Ogonek.

Trial access is available to all Villanova University faculty, staff, and students. Links to the two archives will be available on the Databases A-Z list under O until the trial ends on Oct. 2. Contact us if you would like to recommend this resource for the permanent collection.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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UK Parliamentary Papers on Trial

By Jutta Seibert

Falvey Memorial Library offers trial access to the U.K. Parliamentary Papers archive on the ProQuest platform until Sept. 17. Trial access covers parliamentary papers from 1679 to the present. Among the documents included in the archive are public petitions, bills and acts, command papers, the papers of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, Hansard, journals, and debates. The Advanced Search screen offers a range of search options, such as date range and document types. Contents can also be explored by individual members of parliament, offices, and constituencies. Directories for members and constituencies are connected to the search interface.

Research applications are endless given the scope of the archive. The parliamentary record included in the archive stretches from the current pandemic back in time to the founding of the Virginia Colony in the 17th century. It brings the many interests of Britain’s national politics to light. Try a keyword search of opium to discover a wealth of data about Britain’s commercial interests in opium in its colonial territories.

Visit ProQuest’s research guide for the U.K. Parliamentary Papers archive if you would like to learn more, and contact us if you would like to recommend this resource for the permanent collection. A link to the collection will be available on the Databases A-Z list until the trial ends Sept. 17.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Listening to the World: Open-Source Intelligence, 1941-1996

By Jutta Seibert

Today’s technology drives the rapid dissemination of international news through countless social networks and other news channels, but less than two decades ago US students looking for in-depth international news coverage were generally limited to one or two major newspapers from a few foreign countries. A few international newspapers arrived per mail and made it onto library shelves a week or two after they were printed, but most took months to arrive because libraries subscribed to them on microfilm only. Thus, awareness of current international news was mostly limited to natural disasters and major political events as disseminated through US media channels.

News in the twentieth century was generally aimed at and limited to national audiences, although shortwave broadcasting and satellite technology allowed those with access to the necessary technology to listen in on “open” news channels in other countries. Consequently, the general population knew remarkably little about daily news covering events in other countries. US policy makers realized during World War II that they could no longer afford to ignore what is often referred to as open-source intelligence, that is to say the monitoring of international news channels.

Founded in 1941, the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) was tasked with monitoring, recording, transcribing, and translating broadcast and print news globally to increase US awareness of international events and sentiments. FBIS reports were intended for a government audience, but since 1974 selected reports were made available to the broader public through the National Technical Information Service’s World News Connection. The reports were published in print, but back archives were soon microfilmed and later digitized as well.

Today, FBIS reports are one of a few library resources that offer global news and opinions in translation. FBIS translated news from more than 70 languages, ranging from Afrikaans to Zulu. The digital FBIS archive, available to the Villanova community, spans the years 1941 to 1996 and includes a wide selection of daily news from newspapers, magazines, radio broadcasts, and TV channels.

In 2005, FBIS was succeeded by the Open Source Center under the umbrella of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and, in 2015, the Open Source Center became the Open Source Enterprise. The main mission of the service remains open-source intelligence gathering. In 2014, the CIA decided to cut off public access to its translated news reports justifying the decision with rising costs, widely available internet-based news channels, and machine translation capabilities. Journalists and scholars alike where thus deprived of access to this valuable resource. While much of the news that FBIS monitored was indeed freely available online, machine translation does not compare to the expert services provided by human translators.

Anyone interested in international news in the period from 1941 to 1996 should take a closer look at FBIS Daily Reports. The archive includes selected translations from most of the major news sources such as TASS, Izvestiya, and the Pravda for Russia and Le Monde, Le Figaro, and Le Nouvel Observateur for France. The contents of the archives span the gamut from transcripts of radio broadcasts to translated news articles and transcripts of political speeches. Coverage varies by region and can be determined by navigating to the Publication Series Title page. The purchase of this collection was made possible with a gift from Allen Cellar, class of 1969.

For more news in translation explore MideastWire.com, which offers news in translation from 22 countries in the Middle East, and the Current Digest of the Russian Press, which consists of translated Russian news from 1949 to the present. Contact us if you have any questions.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Falvey Focuses on Scholarship: Kaylan Purisima Researches Cause of Violence Against Indigenous Women in the U.S.

Kaylan Purisima

 

BY SHAWN PROCTOR

Welcome to part 5 of a 7-part series featuring the 2021 Falvey Scholars. Read more about them every Monday and in the upcoming issue of Mosaic: the Library’s bi-annual publication.

Falvey Memorial Library is honored to announce the 2021 Falvey Scholar award winners. We will showcase the research of our eight young alumni on the blog and in the fall issue of Mosaic.

Sponsored by the Library and the Center for Research and Fellowships, the Falvey Scholars program recognizes outstanding undergraduate research at Villanova University. Award winners are selected from a pool of candidates generated by applications submitted by a senior Villanova University student or a group of students working on a senior project together with the recommendation of the advisor to the senior thesis or capstone project completed for academic credit.

View the 2021 Falvey Scholars Awards virtual booklet.


 

Researcher Brief

Falvey Scholar: Kaylan Purisima 

Hometown: Lodi, N.J.

Other Honors: Connelly-Delouvrier International Scholar, Villanova Scholarship, Joseph Betz Solidarity Award

Project Title: “Examining Violence Against Indigenous Women in the United States through a Settler Colonialist Framework” 

Faculty Mentor: Brianna Remster, PhD, Associate Professor, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences 


 

Learn about Kaylan’s research in her own words:

 

Tell me about your Falvey Scholar Award-winning research project.

I seek to answer the question of how the U.S. contributes to violence against indigenous women. My main goal was to understand why the violence level is so high today. To do that I had to look back, starting with the settler arrival in 1492, and show many factors that began more than a century ago continue in some form today.

How did Falvey Memorial Library support your research?

The Library’s staff was integral to my research experience! I met with Jutta Seibert, Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement, in the beginning of my research process, and she went through very clearly how to navigate the Falvey website. She showed me all the tips and tricks to find a range of useful sources, without which I would have been lost as someone new to research.

Falvey’s resources and databases were the rock of my research. I did essentially all my research on the Falvey website, and I found almost all of my sources through Falvey. Only when I looked at nonacademic sources such as news articles did I turn to Google.

What impact did this project have on you?

I will certainly continue in this research direction because if this research has taught me anything, it is that I have a lot more to learn. The general lack of education regarding Native peoples and histories and our part to play in the erasure of this is something that I will spend my whole life rectifying.

What’s next for you?

I will be working with Teach for America, teaching special education in Charlotte, N.C.

 


Shawn Proctor

Shawn Proctor, MFA, is Communications and Marketing Program Manager at Falvey Memorial Library.

 


 


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When Time Is of the Essence: Very Short Introductions

By Jutta Seibert

Faculty looking for short texts to introduce students to a new subject value the Very Short Introductions (VSI) series from Oxford University Press for their clarity and brevity. The complete VSI series with close to 700 individual titles is now available to the Villanova community via a dedicated VSI gateway. The series has broad interdisciplinary appeal with a sizeable number of STEM titles in addition to arts and humanities and social science topics.

Take a closer look at VSI the next time you are looking for concise and authoritative information about a complex topic. Each volume is written by a specialist for a general audience with little or no previous knowledge of the subject. The scope of this series is impressive: it includes a suite of basic business subjects such as accounting, taxation, and marketing; STEM topics range from engineering and physics to medicine and mathematics; arts and humanities subjects come from a wide variety of disciplines as is to be expected.

Individual volumes rarely exceed 160 pages in keeping with the series title. Readers can expect concise overviews, brief outlines of current research directions and references to seminal texts. The VSI platform makes it easy to discover suitable volumes and chapters. Readers may set up personal accounts to manage a list of favorite chapters. Alternatively, they can also download citations containing persistent URLs. Those who would like to download individual chapters will need to use the print function to create a pdf document first.

You can find a link to the complete collection on the Library’s Databases A-Z list. Records for individual volumes can be found in the Library’s catalog. Note that the catalog includes records for selected VSI volumes available through ProQuest as well as for print volumes. Readers who prefer to browse and search all published VSI volumes simultaneously should use the link on the A-Z list.

Interesting subjects abound in a series this large: for example, anyone seeking to gain a better understanding of the current global health crisis will find the volumes covering the history of pandemics, epidemiology, viruses, and public health particularly interesting. The sheer scope of the series can be overwhelming at first: aesthetics, art theory, artificial intelligence, Augustine, Catholicism, climate, critical theory, biometrics, citizenship, environmental politics, evolution, feminism, free speech, globalization, the Harlem Renaissance, human rights, the Koran, literary theory, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the periodic table, privacy, number theory, and the Silk Road. And this is just a small sample of the topics covered!

Visit the VSI database to discover subjects that you are interested in, and let us know how you feel about this latest addition to the Library’s ever-growing collection.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Littman E-Library of Jewish Civilization Trial

By Jutta Seibert

Explore the ensemble of Jewish studies books published in the Littman Library of Jewish Civilization (LLJC) series. The books published in this series cover a range of subject areas including history, religious studies, philosophy, literature, and cultural studies including classical and modern works. Online access to LLJC is available on trial basis until Nov. 22 through the Databases A-Z list on the Library’s website.


The series was established in 1965 by Louis Littman in memory of his father with the intent to explore, explain, and perpetuate Jewish heritage. Louis Littman described his motivation for the project and the challenges involved in publishing high-quality Jewish studies books in English in a posthumously published article in the journal of Jewish Historical Studies.

Littman, Louis. “The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization.” Jewish Historical Studies 29 (1982): 311-25. http://www.jstor.org/stable/29779823.

Founder and editors of the series initially focused on publishing translations of seminal Jewish works written in Hebrew as expressed on the dust jacket of the first book in the series: “The aim of the Littman Library of Jewish Civilization is to present to the English-speaking public a selection of some of the finest products of the Jewish religious and literary genius.” The first volume published in 1965 was the poetry collection Hebrew Poems from Spain, selected and translated by David Goldstein. Most of the works published in LLJC in the last decades were written in English. Among the recently added titles are Hasidism Beyond Modernity, Cities of Splendour in the Shaping of Sephardi History, and Final Judgment and the Dead in Medieval Jewish Thought.

Today, LLJC books can be found on various online platforms, such as JSTOR, Liverpool University Press, and ACLS Humanities E-Book. The current trial gives the Villanova community access to a subset of 50 titles on the Liverpool University Press e-book platform. Part of the collection is also available in print. Contact us if you have questions or if you would like to recommend this series for the permanent collection.


Jutta Seibert is Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 



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Last Modified: October 14, 2020