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The Hobbit Turns 80!

Thu, 2017-09-21 18:45

 

“May the wind under your wings bear you where the sun sails and the moon walks.”

Happy birthday to The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien!  Here are several articles commemorating the day:

The Hobbit at 80: Much More than a Childish Prequel to The Lord of the Rings

Picturing the Hobbit

The Hobbit at 80: What were JRR Tolkien’s Inspirations behind His First Fantasy Tale of Middle Earth?

The Hobbit Is Turning 80.  Here’s What Reviewers Said About It in 1937.

I’m also really fond of this article from the Oxford Dictionaries blog about the origins of the word “hobbit.

If you are interested in (re)reading The Hobbit, we have several copies in our circulating collection.

Here are some images from a lovely book called Art of the Hobbit.

Lilly Spotlight-Cuban-Americans, the Duke Common Experience and Beyond

Fri, 2017-09-15 18:09
Cuban-Americans, the Duke Common Experience and Beyond

Need some new reading material or just interested in seeing what’s in Lilly Library’s collection that you might not know about? Check out Lilly’s Collection Spotlight!

Lilly Spotlight on Duke Common Experience

In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month and the Duke Common Experience Reading Program selection of Richard Blanco’s The Prince of Los Cocuyos, our spotlight shines on books and films relevant to his and the Cuban-American experience.  Blanco, the inaugural poet for Barack Obama in 2012, writes in his memoir of his childhood growing up in Miami as a son of Cuban immigrants. The memoir finds Blanco grappling with both his place in America and his sexuality, striving to discover his identity.

Our collections include books on Cuban Art, the Cuban-American immigrant experience in the United States, LGBTQ communities in Hispanic culture, and several books of Blanco’s poetry. Here are a few highlights from our Lilly Collection Spotlight:

Books:

Adios Utopia — Art in Cuba Since 1950
This exhibition catalog covers Cuban art from 1950 to the present viewed through the particular lenses of the Cuban Revolution, utopian ideals, and subsequent Cuban history. The collection covered in this book will be on display at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis starting in November.

Latinx Comic Book Storytelling:Latinx
An Odyssey by Interview by Frederick Luis Aldama

In this book, scholar Frederick Luis Aldama interviews 29 Latinx comic book creators, ranging from the legendary Jaime Hernandez of Love and Rockets fame to lesser known up and coming writers/illustrators.

Matters of the Sea / Cosas del mar by Richard Blanco

This bilingual chapbook contains a poem Blanco wrote and read for the reopening of the US Embassy in Havana in 2015. Blanco writes in the opening lines, “The sea doesn’t matter, what matters is this: we all belong to the sea between us, all of us.”

Films:


CubAmerican (2012)  DVD 28418
Exploring the causes leading to the exile of millions of Cubans from communist Cuba by depicting the journey of illustrious Cuban-Americans to their new life in the United States

 

Finally the sea (2007) DVD 12185
“The wreckage of an empty Cuban raft is the catalyst for Tony, a successful Cuban-American businessman, who files from Wall Street to Cuba to discover his roots. His journey develops into a striking love story where politics and romance collide

Mambo Kings (1992) DVD 27116
Musician brothers, Cesar and Nestor, leave Cuba for America (NYC) in the 1950s, with the hopes of making it to the top of the Latin music scene. Cesar is the older brother who serves as the business manager and is a consummate ladies’ man. Nestor is the brooding songwriter, who cannot forget the woman in Cuba who broke his heart. This is an unrated version of the film, with one restored scene.

Visit our Collection Spotlight shelf, in the lobby to the left of the Lilly desk. 
There are many more titles available to you, and if you want more suggestions – just ask us. Stay tuned – We will highlight our diverse and varied holdings at Lilly with a different theme each month.

Submitted by Ira King
Evening Reference Librarian & Supervisor
Lilly Library

 

 

 

Reading Walt Whitman

Thu, 2017-09-14 21:01

Young Walt WhitmanIn honor of the “I Sing the Body Electric: Walt Whitman and the Body” exhibit (drawn from our extensive Whitman collection) on display until October 28th in the Biddle Rare Book Room, I will be writing several blog posts about Walt Whitman and his life.  For this post I want to share where to look to find the works he has written. Reading Whitman for yourself will help you to see why he’s still such a large figure in American Literature.

First you can find a lot of Whitman’s poetry online, if you just want to get a taste of his poetry.   Here are two of of my favorite places to look: Poets.org and Poetry Foundation

Walt Whitman Archive

The Walt Whitman Archive, a project spearheaded by several important Whitman scholars, has a wealth of resources about and by Whitman.  It is well worth investigating all the resources in that archive, but of special interest is the Published Works Section.  It provides access to the six American editions of Leaves of Grass published in Whitman’s lifetime and the so-called deathbed edition of 1891–92.  If you want to really investigate the major changes and expansions that Whitman added to Leaves of Grass, this is the perfect place to look.

Books by Whitman

You can find many different editions for Whitman’s works.  Here are a couple of especially good versions in our general collection.

Leaves of Grass: The Complete 1855 and 1891-92 Editions

Complete Poetry and Collected Prose

Leaves of Grass and Other Writings: Authoritative Texts, Other Poetry and Prose, Criticism

Song of Myself: With a Complete Commentary

Whitman Illuminated: Song of Myself

Drum-taps: The Complete 1865 Edition

Specimen Days, Democratic Vistas, and Other Prose

If that’s just not enough Whitman for you, you should also know that there will be talk and exhibit tour on September 21st from 11:45-1:30 in Rubenstein Library 153.  A light lunch will be served.

What to Read this Month: September 2017

Wed, 2017-09-13 20:25

whattoreadthismonth

It’s September and fall weather is settling in – why not settle in with a good read from our New & Noteworthy or Current Literature collections? We’ve* picked out a variety of titles for this month, from Ugandan novels to books about data visualization, and these few are reflective of a greater diversity within both New & Noteworthy and Current Literature.

The Book of CirclesThe Book of Circles: Visualizing Spheres of Knowledge by Manuel Lima. Curious about information visualization? Love spending hours pouring over intricately detailed infographics? Manuel Lima explores historic and present-day uses of the circle as sign, symbol, graph, and more in his Book of Circles. It features nearly 300 accompanying illustrations covering a large array of topics: architecture, urban planning, fine art, design, fashion, technology, religion, cartography, biology, astronomy, physics, and more, all of which are based on the circle. You can also read a little bit about the author’s account of writing the book here.

EverythingBelongsToUsEverything Belongs to Us by Yoojin Grace Wuertz. Yoojin Grace Wuertz spins a lively tale of two friends – one from a privileged background, the other from a lifetime of difficulties – as they enter South Korea’s top university in the 1970s. Mixing personal aspirations (to join the ranks of the rich or the ranks of an underground movement) with charming university students and a secret society, this novel is set against the backdrop of South Korea’s struggle for prosperity in the 70s. Everything Belongs to Us is well lauded in the NY Times and featured in Kirkus.

Alana MasseyAll the Lives I Want by Alana Massey. This collection examines the intersection of the personal with pop culture by looking at different female figures (Sylvia Plath, Britney Spears, Lana Del Ray, and others) in a series of essays that range in tone from humor to academic, but always remain honest. Massey is known for her columns and criticism, and you can read a review of this, her first book, here and check out an interview with the author here.

Eye of the SandpiperThe Eye of the Sandpiper by Brandon Keim. Curious about the natural world? Brandon Keim’s Eye of the Sandpiper looks at nature in four parts: the evolutionary and ecological quirks of our world, animals and their emotions, man’s interactions with nature, and finally ethics and ecology in an age of human ingenuity. Infused with a love of the wild, Keim’s work is scientific but written in delightful prose. You can read more about him here.

KintuKintu by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi. Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s doctoral novel Kintu won the Kwani Manuscript Prize and was longlisted for the Etisalat Prize for Literature. It follows the descendants of a man named Kintu in multilayered narrative that reimagines the history of Uganda through the Kintu clan’s cursed bloodline. Find an interview with the author here and here, and read more about Kintu, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi, and Uganda here.

*Selections and descriptions by UNC Field Experience Student Ellen Cline.

Remembering John Ashbery

Tue, 2017-09-05 15:48

John Ashbery

John Ashbery, an award-winning poet, died over the weekend.  In 1976 he became the only writer to win the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award in the same year for his collection Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror.  You can see the opening of an early draft of this important work here.

If you’ve never read any of his poetry, now would be a great time.  We own many of his collections. 

To understand his place in American poetry, you might also want to look at some of the biographies and literary criticism that we have about him.

We also have several interesting items in the Rubenstein Library that you might want to explore.

For a nice biography and overview of Ashbery, check out this Poetry Foundation page.  You might also appreciate this recent write-up in the New Yorker.

Come Read March: Book One with the Low Maintenance Book Club

Thu, 2017-08-31 19:33

The next meetings of the Duke University Libraries’ Low Maintenance Book Club will feature March: Book One by Congressman John Lewis (GA-5), an American icon and key figure of the civil rights movement.

We will be reading the entire graphic novel. Since it’s a bit longer than some past selections (and in the spirit of low maintenance), if you don’t have a chance to finish the entire book, we still welcome you to join us!

You can find a copy at our libraries.  Durham County Library also has copies available.

Please register for this event.  The first ten people to register will receive a free copy of the book.

Date:
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Time:
6:00pm – 8:00pm
Location:
Bostock 127 (The Edge Workshop Room)

Light refreshments will be served.

If you have any questions, you can contact Arianne Hartsell-Gundy at aah39@duke.edu.

What to Read this Month: August 2017

Tue, 2017-08-22 17:16

whattoread

Welcome back to a new semester!  While you’re exploring all that Duke has to offer, why not explore our New and Noteworthy or Current Literature collections?  One of the great things about the books in these collections is the variety of subject areas and genres represented—everything  from popular novels, political histories, and books about animals (and many things in between).

monkeytalkMonkeytalk: Inside the Worlds and Minds of Primates by Julia Fischer. Monkey see, monkey do–or does she? Can the behavior of non-human primates–their sociality, their intelligence, their communication–really be chalked up to simple mimicry? Emphatically, absolutely: no. And as famed primatologist Julia Fischer reveals, the human bias inherent in this oft-uttered adage is our loss, for it is only through the study of our primate brethren that we may begin to understand ourselves.  An eye-opening blend of storytelling, memoir, and science, Monkeytalk takes us into the field and the world’s primate labs to investigate the intricacies of primate social mores through the lens of communication.

mothstorytellingThe Moth Presents All these Wonders: True Stories about Facing the Unknown, edited by Catherine Burns. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of storytelling phenomenon The Moth, 45 unforgettable true stories about risk, courage, and facing the unknown, drawn from the best ever told on their stages. Alongside Louis C.K., Tig Notaro, John Turturro, and Meg Wolitzer, readers will encounter: an astronomer gazing at the surface of Pluto for the first time, an Afghan refugee learning how much her father sacrificed to save their family, a hip-hop star coming to terms with being a “one-hit wonder,” a young female spy risking everything as part of Churchill’s “secret army” during World War II, and more.

walkawayWalkaway: A Novel by Cory Doctorow.  From New York Times bestselling author Cory Doctorow, an epic tale of revolution, love, post-scarcity, and the end of death.  Fascinating, moving, and darkly humorous, Walkaway is a multi-generation SF thriller about the wrenching changes of the next hundred years…and the very human people who will live their consequences.  You can read reviews here and here.

 

 

TheEvangelicalsThe Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America by Frances FitzGerald.  This groundbreaking book from a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian is the first to tell the powerful, dramatic story of the Evangelical movement in America–from the Puritan era to the 2016 presidential election.  Evangelicals have in many ways defined the nation. They have shaped our culture and our politics. Frances FitGerald’s narrative of this distinctively American movement is a major work of history, piecing together the centuries-long story for the first time.  You can read reviews here and here.  You may also appreciate this interview with the author.

fortunateonesThe Fortunate Ones: A Novel by Ellen Umansky. One very special work of art–a Chaim Soutine painting–will connect the lives and fates of two different women, generations apart, in this enthralling and transporting debut novel that moves from World War II Vienna to contemporary Los Angeles.  This painting will bring Lizzie and Rose together and ignite an unexpected friendship, eventually revealing long-held secrets that hold painful truths. Spanning decades and unfolding in crystalline, atmospheric prose, this book is a haunting story of longing, devastation, and forgiveness, and a deep examination of the bonds and desires that map our private histories.

What to Read this Month: July 2017

Mon, 2017-07-24 18:18

What to Read this Month

Check out our New and Noteworthy and Current Literature collections for some good reads this month!

4 3 2 1 4 3 2 1 by Paul Auster.  Nearly two weeks early, on March 3, 1947, in the maternity ward of Beth Israel Hospital in Newark, New Jersey, Archibald Isaac Ferguson, the one and only child of Rose and Stanley Ferguson, is born.  From that single beginning, Ferguson’s life will take four simultaneous and independent fictional paths. Four identical Fergusons made of the same DNA, four boys who are the same boy, go on to lead four parallel and entirely different lives. Family fortunes diverge. Athletic skills and sex lives and friendships and intellectual passions contrast.  Read reviews here and here.

American Sickness An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back by Elisabeth Rosenthal.  At a moment of drastic political upheaval, this book is an investigation into the dangerous, expensive, and dysfunctional American healthcare system, as well as solutions to its myriad of problems.  Breaking down this monolithic business into the individual industries–the hospitals, doctors, insurance companies, and drug manufacturers–that together constitute our healthcare system, Rosenthal exposes the recent evolution of American medicine as never before.  You can read a review here.

Comfort FoodComfort Food: Meanings and Memories, edited by Michael Owen Jones and Lucy M. Long, explores this concept with examples taken from Atlantic Canadians, Indonesians, the English in Britain, and various ethnic, regional, and religious populations as well as rural and urban residents in the United States. This volume includes studies of particular edibles and the ways in which they comfort or in some instances cause discomfort. The contributors focus on items ranging from bologna to chocolate, including sweet and savory puddings, fried bread with an egg in the center, dairy products, fried rice, cafeteria fare, sugary fried dough, soul food, and others.

Samantha IrbyWe Are Never Meeting in Real Life is a collection of essays by Samantha Irby, who runs the blog bitches gotta eat.  Whether talking about how her difficult childhood has led to a problem in making “adult” budgets, explaining why she should be the new Bachelorette—she’s “35-ish, but could easily pass for 60-something”—detailing a disastrous pilgrimage-slash-romantic-vacation to Nashville to scatter her estranged father’s ashes, sharing awkward sexual encounters, or dispensing advice on how to navigate friendships with former drinking buddies who are now suburban moms—hang in there for the Costco loot—she’s as deft at poking fun at the ghosts of her past self as she is at capturing powerful emotional truths.

Fever of the BloodA Fever of the Blood by Oscar de Muriel.  New Year’s Day, 1889.In Edinburgh’s lunatic asylum, a patient escapes as a nurse lays dying. Leading the manhunt are legendary local Detective ‘Nine-Nails’ McGray and Londoner-in-exile Inspector Ian Frey.Before the murder, the suspect was heard in whispered conversation with a fellow patient–a girl who had been mute for years. What made her suddenly break her silence? And why won’t she talk again? Could the rumours about black magic be more than superstition?McGray and Frey track a devious psychopath far beyond their jurisdiction, through the worst blizzard in living memory, into the shadow of Pendle Hill–home of the Lancashire witches–where unimaginable danger awaits.

New U.S. Poet Laureate: Tracy K. Smith

Mon, 2017-07-10 15:49

Tracy K. Smith, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2017- 
Photo credit: Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Tracy K. Smith, the 22nd Poet Laureate, was appointed on June 14th.  If you are interested in reading her work, fortunately we have several collections of her poetry that you can read.

You might also want to explore some articles about her.  This great NPR profile discusses her appointment, her process as a poet, and a recording of her reading ‘When Your Small Form Tumbled Into Me.’  Here’s another profile from the NYT.  This PBS article lists four poets that Tracy K. Smith recommends you read: Solmaz Sharif, Erika L. Sanchez (coming soon to our collection) James Richardson, and Claudia Rankine.

Finally here’s a video where she reads from Life on Mars:

What to Read this Month: June 2017

Tue, 2017-06-06 16:42

Check out our New and Noteworthy and Current Literature collections for some good reads this month!

 The Afterlife of Stars by Joseph Kertes was named a “10 New Books we Recommend this Week” by the New York Times Book Review.  Tim O’Brien said that “The Afterlife of Stars moved me more than any other novel I’ve read in recent memory.” With dazzling storytelling and a firm belief in the power of humor in the face of turmoil, Kertes has crafted a fierce saga of identity and love that resonates through its final page. The Afterlife of Stars is not only a stirring account of one displaced family’s possibilities for salvation, but also an extraordinary tale of the singular and enduring ties of brotherhood.

 The Aisles Have Eyes: How Retailers Track Your Shopping, Strip Your Privacy, and Define Your Power by Joseph Turow is a revealing and surprising look at the ways that aggressive consumer advertising and tracking, already pervasive online, are coming to a retail store near you.  Drawing on his interviews with retail executives, analysis of trade publications, and experiences at insider industry meetings, advertising and digital studies expert Joseph Turow pulls back the curtain on these trends, showing how a new hyper-competitive generation of merchants–including Macy’s, Target, and Walmart–is already using data mining, in-store tracking, and predictive analytics to change the way we buy, undermine our privacy, and define our reputations.

Eveningland by Michael Knight is a collection of stories.  Grappling with dramas both epic and personal, from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to the “unspeakable misgivings of contentment,” Eveningland captures with crystalline poeticism and perfect authenticity of place the ways in which ordinary life astounds us with its complexity.   These stories, told with economy and precision, infused with humor and pathos, excavate brilliantly the latent desires and motivations that drive life forward.  You can read reviews here and here.

 

 I’d Die for You: And Other Lost Stories by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a collection of the last remaining unpublished and uncollected short stories by F. Scott Fitzgerald, edited by Anne Margaret Daniel. Fitzgerald did not design the stories in I’d Die For You as a collection. Most were submitted individually to major magazines during the 1930s and accepted for publication during Fitzgerald’s lifetime, but were never printed. Some were written as movie scenarios and sent to studios or producers, but not filmed. Others are stories that could not be sold because their subject matter or style departed from what editors expected of Fitzgerald. They date from the earliest days of Fitzgerald’s career to the last. They come from various sources, from libraries to private collections, including those of Fitzgerald’s family.

 The Possessions by Sara Flannery Murphy.  In this electrifying literary debut, a young woman who channels the dead for a living crosses a dangerous line when she falls in love with one of her clients, whose wife died under mysterious circumstances. A tale of desire and obsession, deceit and dark secrets that defies easy categorization, The Possessions is a seductive, absorbing page-turner that builds to a shattering, unforgettable conclusion.  You can read reviews here and here.