Monthly Archives: June 2012

Behind the Scenes

While the blog has been quiet (three weeks since the last post!?) the library has not. Traditionally summer is our time to get a lot of behind-the-scenes work done. Here’s some of what’s been keeping us busy this summer –

-we removed a lot of shelving on the first floor to make room for new seating areas. This means we also had to move thousands of books and put in some carpet;

-we’ve ordered new chairs for all the seating areas in the library;

-we’re in the middle of replacing all the computers at the public stations;

-we are in the middle of a digitization project, digitizing all the back issues of the Minaret as well as the annual yearbooks. We don’t have a precise date for when the digitized copies will be available for use, but we’re hoping sometime in the fall semester;

-we weathered tropical storm Debbie. We discovered two minor leaks. Kudos to facilities for their amazing quickness in making repairs;

-we’ve been weeding the collection and finding homes for books we can no longer use. We’ve found some homes here in Tampa, across the nation, and across the globe. This is all to make room for the new books we’ll be receiving next fall and spring;

-we’re testing out some new databases;

-we are re-thinking our internal organization and looking to see if we can find ways to improve our service;

-we re-vamped the Curriculum Room to make more space for our education students.

-and, I’m sure there are some projects I’m forgetting.

All of this in addition to our regularly scheduled work of processing books and serials, checking out books and laptops, staffing the Reference Desk, writing new research guides and subject portal pages, and keeping our online presence running smoothly.

There’s so much to do I sometimes forget about updating our social media sites, but I expect the posts to return with some regularity in August.

For those of you taking time off around the Fourth of July, have a safe and happy holiday!

UT MFA Lectores Public Reading Series for Summer 2012

(Note: Why does UT call the public reading portion of the MFA Creative Writing program Lectores? Check out this post for some insight.)

The following is from the UT MFA Creative Writing Facebook page:

The Second Installment of the UTampa MFA Lectores series is set, June 14-June 21. Please check it out. All events start at 7pm and are free and open to the public

· Thursday, June 14 – Novelists Maile Chapman and Brock Clarke. Held in the Reeves Theater in the Vaughn Center on the UT campus.

· Friday, June 15 – MFA Opening Reading with poet, memoirist, playwright and best-selling author Nick Flynn. Held in the Falk Theatre on the UT campus.

· Saturday, June 16 – “As Publishing Perishes” with Jill Bialosky, executive editor of W.W. Norton, and Keith Gessen, editor of n+1 and Vanity Fair. Reeves Theater.

· Sunday, June 17 – Jill Bialosky and fiction writer Mikhail Iossel. Held in the Falk Theatre on the UT campus.

· Monday, June 18 – British novelist Tibor Fischer and novelist, editor, translator and journalist Keith Gessen, Falk Theatre.

· Tuesday, June 19 – Poet and non-fiction writer Donald Morrill and fiction writer Josip Novakovich. Held on the 9th floor of the Vaughn Center on the UT campus.

· Wednesday, June 20 – Novelists Arthur Flowers and Jeff Parker. Held in the Sykes Chapel and Center for Faith and Values on the UT campus.

· Thursday, June 21 – Poet Erica Dawson, novelist Porochista Khakpour and St. Petersburg Poet Laureate Peter Meinke. Held in the Creative Loafing Space, 1911 N. 13th Street, Ste. W200, Ybor City.

Further details on the series can be found at: http://www.ut.edu/mfacw/lectores/

Subject Portals

Depending on how you count, the Macdonald Kelce library licenses access to either just under, or just over, 100 databases.

One of the things we’ve created to help make your research more manageable is the Subject Portals page.

Here we’ve broken up the databases by subject. So, if you’re interested in Evidence Based Practice, Allied Health, Finance, or Sociology you don’t have to sort through all the non-related databases.

Once you land on the subject page you can choose the Databases tab to get a list of databases that contain information on your subject area. Databases often deal with multiple subjects so you will find Academic Search Complete (for example) on many of the subject portal pages.

Another useful tab on the subject pages is the Internet tab. Here you will find a curated list of links to professional organizations and other sites we think may be of interest.

New Arrivals: El Lector

A book I read recently, and can highly recommend, is El Lector by Araceli Tinajero.

During the heyday of cigar factories in Ybor City there were men, el lectores, who read to the workers. They read newspapers, magazines, novels, and poetry. They were responsible for keeping the workers informed about what was happening in the world. The workers paid these men, often highly educated scholars, to keep them abreast of the news, and also to keep them entertained with popular works of fiction. Tinajero’s fascinating history takes a look at these men and the culture they created in the cigar factories.

From the publisher’s description: “The practice of reading aloud has a long history, and the tradition still survives in Cuba as a hard-won right deeply embedded in cigar factory workers’ culture. In El Lector, Araceli Tinajero deftly traces the evolution of the reader from nineteenth-century Cuba to the present and its eventual dissemination to Tampa, Key West, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. In interviews with present-day and retired readers, she records testimonies that otherwise would have been lost forever, creating a valuable archive for future historians.

“Through a close examination of journals, newspapers, and personal interviews, Tinajero relates how the reading was organized, how the readers and readings were selected, and how the process affected the relationship between workers and factory owners. Because of the reader, cigar factory workers were far more cultured and in touch with the political currents of the day than other workers. But it was not only the reading material, which provided political and literary information that yielded self-education, that influenced the workers; the act of being read to increased the discipline and timing of the artisan’s job.”

For more summer reading check out our New Book Shelf across from the Reference Desk.

Some Information Resources

In addition to the databases we also have a set of research guides that may help with your research topic. We’re putting up new research guides all the time, so be sure to check the list every semester.

Some popular research guides are the ones on creative writing, the library, and industry profiles.

We also regularly answer reference questions on the blog. Check the archives for Reference Question of the Week to see if we’ve answered a question about a topic you’re researching.

If you have a question about locating information, using the library, or available resources email me or leave a comment.