Monthly Archives: April 2018

Ideas, Events, Resources and Other Spring Things!

 World Book Day – April 23

CALENDAR

In truth,World Book Day, sponsored by UNESCO, is a movable feast, celebrated at various times by individual nations.  The official April 23 date goes back to 1923 when established book Spanish booksellers. The date honors the birth of Shakespeare and the death of both Shakespeare and Cervantes, both of whom died on the same date, April 23, 1616.  The day is also known as UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day.

On the virtual heels of and in the spirit of World Book we celebrate World Intellectual Property Day on April 26– a day more honored in the breach in these conflicted times.  The event was established by the World Intellectual Property Organization to “raise awareness of how patents, copyright, trademarks and designs impart on daily life” and “to celebrate creativity, and the contribution made by creators and innovators to the development of societies across the globe.” (World Intellectual Property Organization statement)

 April is also National Poetry Month(https://www.poets.org/national-poetry-month/national-poetry-month-faq)   It’s not too late.  Consider the excellent guide to Poetry Resources produced by the Library of Congress. The guide includes the Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape, the Archive of Recorded Poetry & Literature, begun in 1932 under the aegis of Allen Tate, LC Consultant in Poetry, the Center for the Book sponsored Webcasts, Conversations with African Poets and Writers, Library of Congress Poetry and Literature Webcasts, the Library of Congress Poetry Webcasts, a comprehensive listing of LC’s recent poetry webcasts, the National Book Festival, and well as webcasts and recordings of countless individual poets, e.g. thee webcast of Lucille Clifton, Robert Frost, Gwendolyn Brooks, Robert Pinsky, James Dickey, Stephen Spender, Charles Simic, Kurt Vonnegut  and scores of others .   Descriptions and links to these and more poetry resources of LC.  A good link to explore the treasures is this: https://www.loc.gov/poetry/— or try this search strategy: https://www.loc.gov/collections/archive-of-recorded-poetry-and-literature/about-this-collection/  For last minute National Poetry Month resources check here: https://www.poets.org/national-poetry-month/home

New from LC: https://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2018/04/new-poetry-podcast-series-launches/?loclr=ealocb


EVENTS – A smattering of the possibilities

Talk of the Stacks. Sponsored by Friends of Hennepin County Library.

  • April 24Alex Wagner. In her nonfiction narrative debut, Futureface: A Family Mystery, an Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging, Alex Wagner, anchor and correspondent for CBS News and a contributing editor at The Atlantic, takes a journey into her own ancestry and discovers the ways race and immigration constantly redefine the American experience.
  • May 16 —Tracy K. Smith– U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize Winner Tracy K. Smith deftly dissects the nature of citizenship in a time when the American past and present continuously collide, as she discusses her latest collection of poems, Wade in the Water (Graywolf Press, April 2018).

April 28-10:00 AM – Minnesota Muslims Up Close. Tamim Saidiwill lead a discussion of the diversity and unity of the Muslim experience in Minnesota.  Sponsored by Minnesota Independent Scholars’ Forum.  Washburn Library.  Free and open.  5244 Lyndale Ave South, Mpls.

May 18-20   Art-a-Whirl  https://nemaa.org/art-a whirlhttps://nemaa.org/about/

Sunday, May 20, Peace and Justice Forum:  Larry Johnson and Allan Bostelemann discuss the topic “Reformation or Revolution: What should be the role of the Church on Military Killing?” 12:15 Central Lutheran Church, 3rdAvenue and 12thStreet.  Lunch available 11:45 – free will offering.

Through July 29 – “Allen Rupperesberg: Walker – Intellectual property 1968-2018:  https://walkerart.org/calendar/2018/allen-ruppersberg-intellectual-property-19682

REPORTS & RESOURCES

Online resources from the Library of Congres

  • 2018 marks the 100thanniversary of the birth of Leonard Bernstein. The Library of Congress is celebrating by making available online musical manuscripts and scrapbooks from the digital collection – 23700 items, including photos, writings, correspondence, scripts, musical sketches, scrapbooks and audio recordings.   At this writing the Bernstein Collection at LC consists of an estimated 400,000 items, including manuscripts, correspondence, audio and video recordings, photos and more.  The Library will celebrate the Bernstein centennial with a Spring mini-fest May 12-19. (loc.gov/concerts/bernstein100.html) More information at https://www.loc.gov/item/prn-18-038/library-launches-leonard-bernstein-centennial-celebration-with-thousands-of-bernstein-items-online/2018-04-10/
  • Immerse yourself in a virtual tour of the Library. In this video, Janice McKelvey discusses the history of LC,including the era when it was located within the U.S. Capitol from 1800-1987 https://www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/feature_wdesc.php?rec=8268&loclr=eanw.
  • If your interest is in expanding resources in music, learn about NLS Music Notes, a blog for and about those who want, need or provide the special format music of braille, audio, and large print; the showcase includes classical and popular music, new titles, interviews of and articles about blind and low vision musicians, music braille transcripters and features about current music events. https://blogs.loc.gov/nls-music-notes/
  • One fascinating post is Harriet Tubman: Teaming Up to Acquire a Rare Photograph https://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2018/03/harriet-tubman-teaming-up-to-acquire-a-rare-photograph/
  • Learn more about the work of library conservatorswith this video: “Conservation of the Emily Howland album”https://www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/feature_wdesc.php?rec=8267

 “Secret Service and White House win Rosemary Award for Worst in Open Government in 2017 https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/news-rosemary-award/foia/2018-03-12/secret-service-white-house-win-rosemary-award-worst-open

 “Our favorite signs from the 2018 March for Science https://blog.credomobile.com/2018/04/favorite-signs-2018-march-science/

 Almost 50 years Frederick Wiseman’s documentaries are now available on Kanopy – free to anyone with a library cad, a faculty or student ID. https://slate.com/culture/2018/04/frederick-wisemans-documentaries-are-now-streaming-via-kanopy.html

 “Enchanting illustrations carved from old books” https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/art-carved-from-old-books

 “Here are the ‘Transparency’ policy documents the EPA does not want you to see” by Yogin Kothari, Washington representative, Center for Science and Democracy, April 21, 2018. Union of Concerned Scientists. https://blog.ucsusa.org/yogin-kothari/here-are-the-transparency-policy-documents-the-epa-does-not-want-you-to-see

“Yale’s insanely popular happiness course now open to everyone’ by http://mentalfloss.com/article/540264/yales-insanely-popular-happiness-course-now-open-everyone-online, Michele Debzac, April 2018

“John Moss and the roots of the Freedom of Information Act: Worldwide implications https://unredacted.com/2018/04/17/john-moss-and-the-roots-of-the-freedom-of-information-act-worldwide-implications/

 Free online library – https://www.childrenandnature.org/?search=main&s=eeRESEARCH

“Raising teens in a new country” http://www.brycs.org/documents/upload/Raising-Teens-New-Country.pdf

 https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/two-museum-directors-say-its-time-tell-unvarnished-history-us-180968341/  “History is not pretty and sometimes it is vastly different than what we’ve been taught: – Lonnie Bunch and Kevin Gover

 Craig Silverman, http://www.niemanlab.org/2018/03/living-in-a-sea-of-false-signals-are-we-being-pushed-from-trust-but-verify-to-verify-then-trust/  March 8 2018, NiemanLab “This new initiative deploys humans to review, research, and rate U.S. news sites” NiemanLab, March 5, 2018

 The rise and fall of the Hormel Girls, who sold America on SPAM https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/history-of-spam-hormel-girls

 INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORE DAY SATURDAY, APRIL 28

April calendar – addendum

April 21 – Coming to the Table,10:30 AM-Noon at the Sumner Library, 611 Van White Memorial Blvd, Mpls.  Descendants of those who were enslaved and descendants of slave owners, and all those interested in engaging safe constructive dialogue come together to envision the US as a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal the racial woods.  Free and open.

April 22 – Earth Dayhttps://www.dogonews.com/2018/4/17/earth-day-2018-is-dedicated-to-reducing-plastic-litter-and-pollution.  More on reducing plastic: https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/162e3853a3b757e5https:// www.earthday.org/campaigns/plastics-campaign/ https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/162de1ad1c372acb —

April 26 – Raise your Voice! This is Habitat for Humanity Day on the Hill.  https://www.tchabitat.org/events/habitat-on-the-hill-mn-2018

April 27-29.  Saint Paul Art Crawl. http://www.exploreminnesota.com/events/25487/saint-paul-art-crawl-spring-2018

Through April 28 – 2018 Minneapolis St Paul International Film Festival.  St Anthony Main Theatre, http://mspfilm.org/festivals/mspiff/

April 27-29 – Spontaneous Combustion.  Wildwood Theatre’s first production about mental health.  The production is focused on exploring the personal experiences of trauma and how they weave through our everyday struggles. Event is at the Off-Leash Art Box. http://www.offleasharea.org Tickets are priced on a sliding scale, $10-$15.  https://www.wildwoodtheatre.com/welcome

May 3 — It’s a tradition — Over time the Pen Pals author lecture series sponsored by Friends of the Hennepin County Library has become a community tradition.  The fourth and final guest in this 2017-2018 is Jesmyn Ward.  Her talk is set for May 3 (7:30 p.m.) and May 4 (11:00 a.m.)  Ward has written two novels and a memoir, all set on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi.  Her novel, Salvage the Bones, won the 2011 National Book Award for Fiction.   Phone 612 543 8112.

May 5, 2:00 p.m.  Erik Rivenes, Dirty Doc Ames and the Scandal that Shook Minneapolis, RKMC meeting room, Minneapolis Central Library.  For crime fans and local history buffs – the story of turn of the century Minneapolis mayor Doc Ames, “his political scandals, corrupt police department and the downfall that helped jump start an era of reform.  Eric Rivenes is a writer and historian who produces the Most Notorious podcast.  His new book is available this month.

 

 

BULLETIN: Poet Laureate Live – Thursday, April 18

LIVE April 19: Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith

Staying Human: Poetry in the Age of Technology

Tracy K. Smith will report on her rural outreach efforts in her first term as U.S. Poet Laureate. Smith will also discuss the focus of her second term, read poems, and participate in a conversation with Ron Charles, editor of Washington Post’s Book World and host of the Library’s “Life of a Poet” series. Watch LIVE Thursday, April 18 at 7 p.m. ET. – Note this is 6:00 PM CST

Click here to watch on Facebook Live.

Click here to watch on YouTube (captioned).

Click here for more information on the event.

Great things to do and learn while we wait for Spring!

Oh, the lovely fickleness of an April day!  W. H. Gibson

CALENDAR HIGHLIGHTS:

April is National Poetry Month(https://www.poets.org/national-poetry-month/home)  As always, the website is replete with poetic treasures – new books, a Poetry Month reading list (including a book published  by Coffee House Press (https://coffeehousepress.org/products/not-here)and a chance to sign up to receive 25 poems curated by U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy Smith.   A related resource is the Library of CongressArchive of Recorded Poetry and Literature, an amazing compilation of recorded readings of former Consultants in Poetry, including Margaret Atwood, Kurt Vonnegut, Robert Frost and other literary superstars.  https://www.loc.gov/collections/archive-of-recorded-poetry-and-literature/about-this-collection/

The National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Gene Luen Yang has announced that April 2018 marks the annual Reading Without Walls Challenge.  Author Yang challenges readers, educators, librarians and booksellers to read “outside of their walls” by “reading a book about a character who doesn’t look or live like you, a topic you don’t know much about, and/or a book in a format that you don’t normally reading for fun.”  The website even offers some reading suggestions:  http://www.cbcbooks.org/reading-without-walls/

April 19 – Open reception for a new book and exhibit by nature photographer Craig Blacklock exhibit, “St Croix & Namekagon Rivers: The Enduring Gift.”  The exhibit and accompanying book celebrate the 50thanniversary of the St Croix National Scenic Riverway.  Reception at 6:00 p.m. followed by music by Peter Mayer.  Mill City Commons, 6:00-9:00 pm

April 20 –  Valerie Caesar, an artist in residence at the Archives and Special Collections, will talk about her work using historical sources at the University of Minnesota Libraries to inspire and create works of art.  Elmer L. Andersen Library, Room 308. Noon-1:00.   More about this talk and about the Artists in Residence program here: https://www.continuum.umn.edu/2018/01/artists-take-residence-u-archives/

April 21 – 30thAnnual Minnesota Book Awards Ceremony. InterContinental Hotel on the St Paul Riverfront.  6:30 p.m. Reception, 8:00 Award Ceremony, 9:30 Epilogue After-Party.  Follow on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/mnbookawards/See nominated titles here: https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2018/01/27/announcement-minnesota-book-awards-finalists/

April 21-29 – National Park Week.  It’s a busy week including a fee-free day on Saturday, Earth Day (April 22) and National Park Rx Day (April 29.)  Details at https://www.nationalparks.org/our-work/campaigns-initiatives/national-park-week

April 23 – The East Side Freedom Library hosts a sneak preview of Subprime,schedule to open early May at Mixed Blood Theatre in Minneapolis.  Playwright Beck Lee and members of the cast will read some of the script, discuss the development of the project and engage the audience in conversation about the play, living in denial, “even our identities.” 7:00 PM at ESFL (http://eastsidefreedomlibrary.org/)

April 28 – Independent Bookstore Day.  Promoters remind readers that “independent bookstores are not just stores, they’re community centers and local anchors run by passionate readers.” Rain Taxi has merited national kudos for taking a local lead, including publication of an excellent guide to the how and where of areal indies – http://www.raintaxi.com/literary-calendar/twin-cities-independent-bookstore-day-passport/Take time to visit this fun site https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/independent-bookstore-day-photos

April 30 – Toxic inequities: risk, regulation, and environmental justice in the Great Lakes, 12:20 pm – 1:10 pm,  Wangensteen Historical Library, 555 Diehl Hall. Nancy Langston, environmental historian at Michigan Technological University will discuss her current research on environmental health and environmental policy in the Great Lakes region.   http://envhum.umn.edu/session/toxic-inequities-risk-regulation-and-environmental-justice-great-lakes

May 2 –Dinner and program, 6:00 pm — Friends of the (U of M) Libraries, Annual Celebration. Joseph Haj: A conversation, Joseph Haj,artistic director of the Guthrie Theater, will share a conversation with Jeff Meanza, his Associate Artistic Director about the value of the western canon, its continuing relevance, and its agency for social change.  McNamara Alumni Center, $58 general public, $48 Friends of the Library. http://www.continuum.umn.edu/friends.  Email stangret@umn.edu

Next month: Check out the May First Fridays at the U of  M: https://www.continuum.umn.edu/event/first-fridays-may-2018/

RESOURCES

Remembering Barbara Bush:

TED Talk– “Thought reading machines and the death of love” https://www.wired.com/story/ideas-jason-pontin-openwater/

Pew Research has produced a new video and data essay based on the Center’s 2017 survey of U.S. Muslims. The resources include a look at the beliefs of Muslims in America; the data “delves into the ways in which Muslim immigrants see life differently than those who were born in the U.S.”http://www.pewforum.org/2017/07/26/findings-from-pew-research-centers-2017-survey-of-us-muslims/

Data Security: Research on privacy in the digital ageis a recent publication from the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at the Kennedy School.  The study is published in the Journalist Resource publication, a weekly compilation of significant and timely research. (https://journalistsresource.org)

Lisa Vecoli,distinguished curator of the Jean-Nickolaus Tretter Collection in GLBT Studies at the U of M, retired from the U of M Libraries, shares her wisdom and experience in a video conversation now online. https://www.continuum.umn.edu/2018/04/a-conversation-with-lisa-vecoli/ Producer Mark Engebretson adds an excellent blog post. Lisa was also interviewed for the U of M video archives. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFMgE3eNOR4&t=145s

Seen & heard: The Power of Books was a symposium on diversity in children’s literature, sponsored by the Library of Congress in March 2018.  For a video and transcript of the main speaker, click here: https://www.youtube.com.watch?v=ECHX0AFXj0c

Post-NLW reflections

National Library Week 2018 is history.  If you’re a public librarian who celebrated and survived, take time now to relax —  primp the bun, adjust the bifocals and wag a well-worn “shh” finger at the public library patrons waiting in line for assistance.

When you do get a much-needed break , treat yourself to  a cup of coffee and share a laugh about the unfortunate stereotypical TV depictions with a  real librarian and colleague.   Though there will never be a stereotypical librarian,  this essay comes closer to reality than many depictions….

http://mentalfloss.com/article/539843/secrets-of-public-librarians

National Library Week 2018 – Musings

Librarians are the true superheroes–they can help us find our best selves & carve out the future we want, instead of  what’s thrown at us. – Laurie Halse, author

This week (April 8-14) is celebrated nationwide as National Library Week 2018.  During the week, I have fervently devoted a good deal of time reading and pondering the expanding and necessary role of libraries in this, the “Information Age.”

By week’s end, I have once again concluded that what we should be celebrating is National Librarians Week.  Clearly it is people, not buildings, that shape the library experience today.  And never has the role of library workers been more essential for individual seekers of truth, for their communities, and to the fate of an informed and thinking democracy.

As week’s end, I’m at a loss for words to express the urgency I feel about the challenge facing librarians – and for decision-makers who determine the fate of libraries and librarians in a political environment neither recognizes nor values truth-seeking as a priority.

And so, as I grapple with confusion and concern, I look for hope in the words and thoughts of others.   I have sought for and embraced articulate defenders, those who understand and write about the range of ways in which librarians create community, inform decision-making, and preserve American values – with gusto.

Overwhelmed by concerns about critical and independent thinking in this democracy I turn to more articulate spokespersons to share their vision and hope for libraries and librarians. Try to take time this weekend to peruse, if briefly one of more of these thoughtful essays:

And, if we have the snowfall that’s predicted, you might want to take a quick look at some past blog posts on libraries and the critical thinking skills that inform and fulfill the hope that inspires this democracy.  https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2017/01/27/information-and-media-not-weapons-but-tools/

Democracy depends on an informed population. And where can people get all the information they need? —At the Library.” – Elliot Shelkrot,

National Library Week tradition — Top 10 Challenged Books

ALA’s ‘Most Challenged Books’ List

The American Library Associationreleased its annual Top Ten List of Frequently Challenged Books, included in the ALA’s State of America’s Libraries Report 2018, which “affirms the invaluable role libraries and library workers play within their communities by leading efforts to transform lives through education and lifelong learning.”

According to the report, libraries continue to face challenges–including the potential for censorship–to a variety of books, programs and materials. The ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 354 challenges to library, school and university materials and services in 2017. Some individual challenges resulted in requests to restrict or remove multiple titles or collections. OIF estimates that 82%-97% of challenges remain unreported. Overall in 2017, 416 books were targeted–direct attacks on the freedom to read. The most frequently challenged titles last year were:

  1. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
  3. Drama by Raina Telgemeier
  4. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  5. George by Alex Gino
  6. Sex Is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg, illustrated by Fiona Smyth
  7. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  8. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  9. And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, illustrated by Henry Cole
  10. I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas