NCompass Live: The Golden Sower Award: Nebraska’s Children’s Choice Literary Award

Want to know more about how the Golden Sower Award, Nebraska’s Children’s Choice Literary Award, was started and how titles end up on the list each year? Then join us to find out on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, July 24, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

The 2019 Golden Sower Award winners were announced on May 1! Golden Sower Award Committee Chair, Kathy Schultz, and NLC Coordinator of Children and Young Adult Library Services, Sally Snyder, will present the history and the process of the Golden Sower Award, including a look at the web site.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • July 31 – How Does Your Library Garden Grow?
  • Aug. 7 – Life in Fort Schuyler: The Challenges Faced at the SUNY Maritime College Library
  • Aug. 14 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Aug. 21 – Research – the Key to Library Design
  • Aug. 28 – Eliminating Late Fines is a Win-Win for Your Library and Community

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, Youth Services | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Friday Reads: “Pretend I’m Dead” and “Vacuum in the Dark” by Jen Beagin

I read a review for Vacuum in the Dark and discovered that it was the sequel to Jen Beagin’s 2015 debut novel, Pretend I’m Dead. The latter tells the story of Mona, a 24-year-old cleaning woman in Lowell, Massachusetts, who just can’t seem to find her place in the world. Mona volunteers at a clean-needle exchange, collects vintage vacuum cleaners, and has an inner-dialogue with NPR’s Terry Gross (“This is Fresh Air!”). After a doomed relationship with a junkie, she moves to Taos, New Mexico.

The rest of the novel, and the next book, follow Mona as she builds her house cleaning business in Taos (getting to know her clients in person and through their belongings; if you ever thought your cleaning person didn’t snoop, you’d be wrong). She makes poor decisions and weird friends, follows a man to Bakersfield, California, and confronts her past… and her future.

Each book can be read as a stand-alone, but I’d suggest reading them in order. Neither is terribly long – about 240 pages each. If you enjoy gallows humor, quirky characters, and discussions of cleaning products, Mona is the anti-heroine you’ve been waiting for.

Beagin, Jen. Pretend I’m Dead. Northwestern University Press, 2015.
Beagin, Jen. Vacuum in the Dark. Scribner, 2019.

 

Posted in Books & Reading | Tagged , | Leave a comment

#BookFaceFriday – The Dewey Decimal System of Love

This #BookFaceFriday has love down to a (library) science…

“For questions about love, and more particularly, inappropriate love, go the 306.7s.” If you’re searching your library’s catalog for a quick, funny, and perhaps slightly naughty, summer beach read, look no further than Josephine Carr’s “The Dewey Decimal System of Love” (New American Library, 2003).

“…a most bizarre, unpredictable and thoroughly delightful mess that keeps the pages turning and the laughs coming.” — Tampa Tribune

This week’s #BookFace model is Mary Sauers, our Government Information Services Librarian. Mary knows all about love in the library – she married another librarian, former NLC Technology Librarian, and current Director of Technology at Do Space, Michael Sauers.

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

Posted in Books & Reading | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Small-Town Libraries Encouraged to Apply for Kreutz Bennett Grants

Guidelines relaxed; multi-year grants available

More than $400,000 has been granted in the past seven years to small-town libraries in Nebraska. The program is funded through the Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund, an affiliated fund of Nebraska Community Foundation.

The Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund is currently accepting grant applications. Grants will be made to libraries located in communities with a population under 3,000. There are three different areas of support available; each grant requires a one-to-one match in local funding.

Planning for Accreditation Grants

The fund advisory committee encourages all eligible, unaccredited libraries to view the recently updated grant guidelines. A number of additional activities and expenses are now eligible for funding through a “Planning for Accreditation Grant.”

Enhancement Grants

Accredited libraries may apply for program support leading to the creation or improvement of library services and/or outreach. In-kind services or products may fulfill 50 percent of the local match requirement in this area.

Facilities Grants

Accredited libraries may request funding for new facilities or the renovation, restoration or rehabilitation of current libraries. Guidelines for this type of grant have been relaxed to allow libraries to apply for grants in multiple years for a total not to exceed $20,000.

Libraries that previously received facility grants less than $20,000 are allowed to apply for additional funding in this grant area.

There are approximately 100 eligible communities in Nebraska with non-accredited libraries. Libraries working toward accreditation may apply for grants over the course of multiple grant cycles. For instance, Walthill Public Library received two grants in two separate years to help with salary support for the director to spend additional hours working on the accreditation requirements. Once accredited, the library was eligible for larger grants from a variety of sources, including the state of Nebraska.

Grant applications are simple to complete. A short-form proposal is due October 1, 2019, and a full proposal is due in January 2020. Grant seekers may review and download the guidelines and application procedures on the Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund website.

For more information, contact Kristine Gale, Community Impact Coordinator, 402.822.0466 or kgale@nebcommfound.org.

Posted in Grants | Leave a comment

Throwback Thursday

It’s off to the races with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday!

This 3″ x 5″ acetate negative photograph is owned by the Thorpe Opera House Foundation. It is part of the Boston Studio Project collection.

Want to see more of Nebraska’s history? Check out the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

Posted in General, Nebraska Memories, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Friday Reads: ‘Redshirts’ by John Scalzi

I’m going to start off my review of Redshirts with a bold statement. If you are a fan of Star Trek – you need to read this book! And if you are a fan of Star Trek, the title should probably have been an obvious clue.

For the uninitiated, ‘redshirt’ is the term that fans use to refer to the expendable crew members in the Star Trek universe. Whenever you see a landing party heading down to a planet, and a previously unknown character has been added to the team, you can almost guarantee that they are destined to die, in some horrific and/or ridiculous way. Typically these characters are security personnel, who wear red shirts as their uniform.

But, what if these particular crew members started noticing the trend, realizing that their friends and colleagues keep dying on away missions, more often than should be statistically possible. What would they do about it? Can they do anything about it? You’ll definitely be surprised by what they discover and how they try to save their own lives.

John Scalzi is a brilliant writer, and I think Redshirts is one of his best. It’s creative, funny, heart-wrenching, and thought provoking. I admit it, I literally laughed out loud many times while reading this book. If you like Star Trek, sci-fi parody, and yes, even time travel, I think you’ll really enjoy Redshirts.

And if you like audiobooks, this one is read by none other than Wil Wheaton. Yes, Wesley Crusher from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Perfect casting!

Posted in Books & Reading | Tagged , | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: ACRL Outcome Measurement Made Easy: Project Outcome for Academic Libraries

Join us to learn about the new ‘Project Outcome for Academic Libraries‘ surveys and resources on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, July 17, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

Project Outcome is a free toolkit that helps libraries measure four key learning outcomes – knowledge, confidence, application, and awareness – across seven library program and service areas.

Presenter: Sara S. Goek, Program Manager, Association of College & Research Libraries.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • July 24 – The Golden Sower Award: Nebraska’s Children’s Choice Literary Award
  • July 31 – How Does Your Library Garden Grow?
  • Aug. 7 – Life in Fort Schuyler: The Challenges Faced at the SUNY Maritime College Library
  • Aug. 14 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Aug. 21 – Research – the Key to Library Design
  • Aug. 28 – Eliminating Late Fines is a Win-Win for Your Library and Community

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

Posted in Education & Training, Library Management | Tagged , | Leave a comment

#BookFaceFriday “Under the Harrow”

New Books = New #BookFaceFridays!

"Under the Harrow" by Flynn Berry BookFace PhotoHas your book club been on the hunt for new reads? The NLC Book Club Kit collection is here to help! We’ve recently added several new titles to the collection, one of which is   “Under the Harrow” by Flynn Berry (Penguin Books, 2016). For those of you who devoured “Gone Girl” and “Girl on a Train,” this psychological thriller is sure to get your blood pumping. Browse all the new additions at nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub today!

“A thrilling novel of psychological suspense…Under the Harrow contains similarities [to The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl]that will undoubtedly attract readers – but underneath its hard-driving, page-turning, compulsively readable narrative is a striking, original voice all Berry’s own…[Her] precise sentences call to mind Hitchcock’s meticulous storyboards and enrich the work with a cinematic scope.”—Elizabeth Brundage, The New York Times Book Review (Editors’ Choice)

This week’s #BookFace photo is Cathy Hatterman, our Acquisitions Librarian! We added a large number of titles to our book club kit collection in the past 2 months! Cathy has been hard at work tracking down all our requests, as well as adding quite a few books to our library science collection.

Love this #BookFace & reading?  Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

Posted in Books & Reading, General | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Throwback Thursday: Fire Escape

Check out what we found on the Nebraska Memories archive!

This week’s #ThrowbackThursday features a 4-1/2″ x 3″ black and white photograph of Havelock Central Elementary School during the 1950’s. Pictured is a large tubular structure attached to the building that was used as a fire escape.

This picture is provided and owned by Lincoln Public Schools. Historical materials related to the Lincoln Public Schools have been collected and saved in some form and in various offices, library sites and schools since the inception of the first school in the county. Over the past 15 years, the Library Media Services Department has made a deliberate attempt to collect, preserve and archive the history of LPS and make various items available to the staff and also the public. This collection of school building photographs is the beginning of what hopes to be a growing and evolving digital collection.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

Posted in General, Nebraska Memories, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fall 2018 State Publications List Available

For those wanting to add records to their catalogs for Nebraska state documents, the Fall 2018 list of Nebraska E-Docs is now available at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/govDocs/shippinglists/edocsalerts.aspx

Posted in What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: Fun, Easy, and Inexpensive Teen Nights (aka After Hours)

Find out how to run ‘Fun, Easy, and Inexpensive Teen Nights (aka After Hours)’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, July 10, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

Are you having trouble peaking the interest of your teens and tweens? Does it seem like an impossible task to get them involved and excited about the programs? You have come to the right place! Janene Hill, from Jensen Memorial Library in Minden, NE, is going to share her expertise to teach us ideas for a variety of Teen Night Events, including examples of successful events, interaction stations with example activities, and group brainstorming.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • July 17 – ACRL Outcome Measurement Made Easy: Project Outcome for Academic Libraries
  • July 24 – The Golden Sower Award: Nebraska’s Children’s Choice Literary Award
  • July 31 – How Does Your Library Garden Grow?
  • Aug. 7 – Life in Fort Schuyler: The Challenges Faced at the SUNY Maritime College Library
  • Aug. 14 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Aug. 21 – Research – the Key to Library Design
  • Aug. 28 – Eliminating Late Fines is a Win-Win for Your Library and Community

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

Posted in Education & Training, Programming, Youth Services | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Friday Reads: What Elephants Know by Eric Dinerstein

Set in the 1970s, Nandu (12) was found alone at about age 2, except for a pack of wild dogs protecting him, in the Nepalese Borderlands, having been abandoned by his parents.  He was unofficially adopted by the Subba-sahib, the head of an elephant stable in the Borderlands, a very southern part of Nepal.  The King of Nepal owns the stable and the elephants, but only rides once a year to hunt tigers in the area.  Nandu is learning to handle elephants and become a mahout (an elephant trainer) – his charge is an older female elephant called Devi Kali, and she is protective of him.

The beauty and danger of nature is explored and appreciated, as Nandu, Devi Kali, and other mahouts and elephants walk to the river for the elephants’ baths and sometimes must go into the jungle.  Orphan rhino calves are rescued by the boys and tended by Rita, the sister of Nandu’s friend, Dilly.  And sometimes the wild dogs provide unexpected assistance.

When Nandu is sent away to school, hopefully to learn things that will help the stable, he finds bullies and a couple of friends.  One teacher accepts his invitation to visit the stable, and Father Autry’s wisdom is very helpful to Nandu and the Subba-sahib.  The stable is threatened with closure, and at first the Subba-sahib takes no action, only waiting for the King’s reply to his request not to close.  Things are beginning to look dire when Rita suggests they change their focus to becoming a breeding stable.  It becomes Nandu’s job to travel to the elephant sale and buy a tusker worthy of their elephants, an event he has never attended and something he knows little about.   Will he be successful and will that keep the stable alive?

Books that contain a great story and some actual facts about animals have always appealed to me.  This title will appeal to middle grade readers (grades 4-7) who are likewise interested in animal stories.  I have not yet read the companion novel (listed below), but I am going to have to find myself a copy.

Awards include winning the 2017 South Asia Book Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature, and being named a 2017 ALA Notable Children’s Book.

What Elephants Know is followed by A Circle of Elephants: A Companion Novel, which was published in January of 2019.

Dinerstein, Eric. What Elephants Know. Disney-Hyperion, 2016.

Posted in Books & Reading, Youth Services | Tagged , | Leave a comment

#BookFaceFriday “Prodigal Summer”

It’s a jungle out there, #BookFaceFriday fans!

Can’t you just feel the heat radiating from this rain forest setting? Oh, wait, that’s just the local weather! Set over the course of a particularly humid summer, Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver (Harper Perennial, 2000) “weaves together three stories of human love within a larger tapestry of lives inhabiting the forested mountains and struggling small farms of southern Appalachia.” This title is a part of our NLC Book Club Kit collection, along with several other titles by Kingsolver. It seemed like a perfect choice for this week’s bookface, as our local flora and fauna thrive (while the rest of us wilt) in the current heat and humidity!

A “blend of breathtaking artistry, encyclopedic knowledge of the natural world, attention to detail, and ardent commitment to the supremacy of nature.” San Francisco Chronicle

This week’s #BookFace photo was taken on location in Costa Rica by our staff assistant, Kayla Henzel. Thank you Kayla, for your dedication to the #BookFace cause, even while off the clock!

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

Posted in Books & Reading, General | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Throwback Thursday: Fourth of July on Adams Ranch

Happy 4th of July! Let’s celebrate with a #ThrowbackThursday!

This 9-1/2″ x 3-3/4″ panoramic black and white photo shows a large group of men, women and children gathered together at Adams Ranch in Brownson to celebrate the 4th of July in 1904.

This photo is part of the Cheyenne County Historical Society and Museum collection on the Nebraska Memories archive. Cheyenne County Historical Society and Museum, located in Sidney, worked with the Nebraska Library Commission to digitize items from their collection of historical photographs representing people and places of Sidney, Fort Sidney, Potter, Dalton and other communities and sites in the county. Images in this collection include photographs showing business districts in the heart of these towns, troops stationed at the fort, and William Jennings Bryan speaking at Cheyenne County Court House.

Interested in Nebraska History? Explore this collection and many more on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

Posted in General, Nebraska Memories, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

July 4th Fun Facts–Celebrating 243 Years of Independence!

As the nation celebrates this Independence Day, it’s a good time to reflect on how our Founding Fathers enshrined in our Constitution the importance of statistics as a vital tool for measuring people, places and economy.

Who was the first signer of the Declaration of Independence?

Is there a U.S. county named Independence?

What was the nation’s population in 1776?

Answers:

  • John Hancock, a merchant by trade, was the first to sign the Declaration of Independence.
  • The only county named Independence is in Arkansas.
  • The U.S. population was 2.5 million in 1776. It is more than 130 times larger today at 330 million

The following statistics — historical and whimsical — come from responses to U.S. Census Bureau surveys:

 

 

More Fun Facts  

The Census Bureau’s Statistics in Schools program has created this Fun Facts & Teaching Guide for the Fourth of July.

Teachers can interact with students by using fun but real-life data related to the holiday. The teaching guide offers ideas on how to use these facts as an activity.

 

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Technology, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

2019 E-rate Funding Awarded to Nebraska Schools and Libraries

USAC has released Waves 1-10 of Funding Commitment Decision Letters (FCDLs) for E-rate Funding Year 2019. Congratulations to all Nebraska schools and libraries who have been funded!

Your FCDL will be attached as a printable PDF to the email notifying you that your FCDL has been issued. It will also be available in the Notifications section of your EPC account, but you are no longer required to log into your EPC account to view it.

As soon as you receive your FCDL, you can go on to the next step in the E-rate process, filing your Form 486. This form is submitted in your EPC account. Information and instructions on how to do that can be found in this USAC News Brief.

If you haven’t received your FCDL yet, don’t panic! There are many more weekly Waves to come as USAC processes more applications. This is just the start of Funding Year 2019, more approvals are coming. A list of libraries who have received E-rate funding is on the NLC E-rate webpage. The 2019 list will be updated as new funding waves are announced.

If you have any questions or need any assistance with your E-rate forms, visit the NLC E-rate webpage or contact Christa Porter, 800-307-2665, 402-471-3107.

Posted in General, Library Management | Leave a comment

What’s Up Doc? New State Agency Publications at the Nebraska Library Commission

New state agency publications have been received at the Nebraska Library Commission for June 2019.  Included are Annual Reports from the Nebraska Water Center, reports from the Nebraska Planning Council on Developmental Disabilities, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, WellCare of Nebraska, Nebraska Environmental Trust Board, Nebraska Department of Education, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

Most items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted link above, or directly in the .pdf below.  You can read synopses of the books received from the University of Nebraska Press books in the June blogpost.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian; or contact Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Book Briefs: New University of Nebraska Press Books at the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse

The Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse receives documents every month from all Nebraska state agencies, including the University of Nebraska Press (UNP).  Each month we will be showcasing the UNP books that the Clearinghouse receives.                UNP books, as well as all Nebraska state documents, are available for checkout by libraries and librarians, for their patrons, in Nebraska.

Here are the UNP books the Clearinghouse received in June:

Abuses of the Erotic : Militarizing Sexuality in the Post-Cold War United States                                                                                         Josh Cerretti (Series: Expanding Frontiers–Interdisciplinary Approaches to Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality)

Events ranging from sexual abuse at Abu Ghraib to the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” hint that important issues surrounding gender and sexuality remain at the core of political and cultural problems. Nonetheless, intersectional analyses of militarism that account for questions of race, class, and gender remain exceedingly rare. Abuses of the Erotic fills this gap by offering a comprehensive picture of how military values have permeated the civilian cultural sphere and by investigating connections between sexuality and militarism in the United States since the late 1980s.

Josh Cerretti takes up the urgent task of applying an interdisciplinary, transnational framework to the role of sexuality in promoting, expanding, and sustaining the war on terror to understand the links between what Cerretti calls “domestic militarism” and later projects of state-backed violence and intervention. This work brings together scholarship on domestic and international militarization in relation to both homosexuality and heterosexuality to demonstrate how sexual and gender politics have been deployed to bolster U.S. military policies and, by tracking over a decade of militarized sexuality, how these instances have foundationally changed how we think of sexual and gender politics today.

Apostles of Empire : The Jesuits and New France                                Bronwen McShea (Series: France Overseas–Studies in Empre and Decolonization)

Apostles of Empire is a revisionist history of the French Jesuit mission to indigenous North Americans in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, offering a comprehensive view of a transatlantic enterprise in which secular concerns were integral. Between 1611 and 1764, 320 Jesuits were sent from France to North America to serve as missionaries. Most labored in colonial New France, a vast territory comprising eastern Canada and the Great Lakes region that was inhabited by diverse Native American populations. Although committed to spreading Catholic doctrines and rituals and adapting them to diverse indigenous cultures, these missionaries also devoted significant energy to more-worldly concerns, particularly the transatlantic expansion of the absolutist-era Bourbon state and the importation of the culture of elite, urban French society.

In Apostles of Empire Bronwen McShea accounts for these secular dimensions of the mission’s history through candid portraits of Jesuits engaged in a range of secular activities. We see them not only preaching and catechizing in terms that borrowed from indigenous idioms but also cultivating trade and military partnerships between the French and various Indian tribes. Apostles of Empire contributes to ongoing research on the Jesuits, New France, and Atlantic World encounters, as well as on early modern French society, print culture, Catholicism, and imperialism. McShea shows how the Jesuits’ robust conceptions of secular spheres of Christian action informed their efforts from both sides of the Atlantic to build up a French and Catholic empire in North America through significant indigenous cooperation.

Contra Instrumentalism : a Translation Polemic                                      Lawrence Venuti (Series: Provocations)

Contra Instrumentalism questions the long-accepted notion that translation reproduces or transfers an invariant contained in or caused by the source text. This “instrumental” model of translation has dominated translation theory and commentary for more than two millennia, and its influence can be seen today in elite and popular cultures, in academic institutions and in publishing, in scholarly monographs and in literary journalism, in the most rarefied theoretical discourses and in the most commonly used clichés.

Contra Instrumentalism aims to end the dominance of instrumentalism by showing how it grossly oversimplifies translation practice and fosters an illusion of immediate access to source texts. Lawrence Venuti asserts that all translation is an interpretive act that necessarily entails ethical responsibilities and political commitments. Venuti argues that a hermeneutic model offers a more comprehensive and incisive understanding of translation that enables an appreciation of not only the creative and scholarly aspects of what a translator does but also the crucial role translation plays in the cultural and social institutions that shape human life.

In Defense of Farmers : The Future of Agriculture in the Shadow of  Corporate Power                                   Jane W. Gibson and Sara E. Alexander, editors (Series: Our Sustainable Future)      

Industrial agriculture is generally characterized as either the salvation of a growing, hungry, global population or as socially and environmentally irresponsible. Despite elements of truth in this polarization, it fails to focus on the particular vulnerabilities and potentials of industrial agriculture. Both representations obscure individual farmers, their families, their communities, and the risks they face from unpredictable local, national, and global conditions: fluctuating and often volatile production costs and crop prices; extreme weather exacerbated by climate change; complicated and changing farm policies; new production technologies and practices; water availability; inflation and debt; and rural community decline. Yet the future of industrial agriculture depends fundamentally on farmers’ decisions.

In Defense of Farmers illuminates anew the critical role that farmers play in the future of agriculture and examines the social, economic, and environmental vulnerabilities of industrial agriculture, as well as its adaptations and evolution. Contextualizing the conversations about agriculture and rural societies within the disciplines of sociology, geography, economics, and anthropology, this volume addresses specific challenges farmers face in four countries: Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, and the United States.

By concentrating on countries with the most sophisticated production technologies capable of producing the largest quantities of grains, soybeans, and animal proteins in the world, this volume focuses attention on the farmers whose labors, decision-making, and risk-taking throw into relief the implications and limitations of our global industrial food system. The case studies here acknowledge the agency of farmers and offer ways forward in the direction of sustainable agriculture.

Power Lined : Electricity, Landscape, and the American Mind      Daniel L. Wuebben

The proliferation of electric communication and power networks have drawn wires through American landscapes like vines through untended gardens since 1844. But these wire networks are more than merely the tools and infrastructure required to send electric messages and power between distinct places; the iconic lines themselves send powerful messages. The wiry webs above our heads and the towers rhythmically striding along the horizon symbolize the ambiguous effects of widespread industrialization and the shifting values of electricity and landscape in the American mind.

In Power-Lined Daniel L. Wuebben weaves together personal narrative, historical research, cultural analysis, and social science to provide a sweeping investigation of the varied influence of overhead wires on the American landscape and the American mind. Wuebben shows that overhead wires—from Morse’s telegraph to our high-voltage grid—not only carry electricity between American places but also create electrified spaces that signify and complicate notions of technology, nature, progress, and, most recently, renewable energy infrastructure. Power-Lined exposes the subtle influences wrought by the wiring of the nation and shows that, even in this age of wireless devices, perceptions of overhead lines may be key in progressing toward a more sustainable energy future.

The Supernatural Sublime : The Wondrous Ineffability of the Everyday in Films from Mexico and Spain    Raul Rodriguez-Hernandez and Claudia Schaefer (Series: New Hispanisms)

The Supernatural Sublime explores the long-neglected element of the supernatural in films from Spain and Mexico by focusing on the social and cultural contexts of their production and reception, their adaptations of codes and conventions for characters and plot, and their use of cinematic techniques to create the experience of emotion without explanation. Deploying the overarching concepts of the supernatural and the sublime, Raúl Rodríguez-Hernández and Claudia Schaefer detail the dovetailing of the unnatural and the experience of limitlessness associated with the sublime.

The Supernatural Sublime embeds the films in the social histories of twentieth- and twenty-first-century Mexico and Spain, both of which made a forced leap into modernity after historical periods founded on official ideologies and circumscribed visions of the nation. Evoking Kant’s definition of the experience of the sublime, Rodríguez-Hernández and Schaefer concentrate on the unrepresentable and the contradictory that oppose purported universal truths and instead offer up illusion, deception, and imagination through cinema, itself a type of illusion: writing with light.

Unfair Labor? : American Indians and the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago                                                                        David R. M. Beck

Unfair Labor? is the first book to explore the economic impact of Native Americans who participated in the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition held in Chicago. By the late nineteenth century, tribal economic systems across the Americas were decimated, and tribal members were desperate to find ways to support their families and control their own labor. As U.S. federal policies stymied economic development in tribal communities, individual Indians found creative new ways to make a living by participating in the cash economy. Before and during the exposition, American Indians played an astonishingly broad role in both the creation and the collection of materials for the fair, and in a variety of jobs on and off the fairgrounds.

While anthropologists portrayed Indians as a remembrance of the past, the hundreds of Native Americans who participated were carving out new economic pathways. Once the fair opened, Indians from tribes across the United States, as well as other indigenous people, flocked to Chicago. Although they were brought in to serve as displays to fairgoers, they had other motives as well. Once in Chicago they worked to exploit circumstances to their best advantage. Some succeeded; others did not.

Unfair Labor? breaks new ground by telling the stories of individual laborers at the fair, uncovering the roles that Indians played in the changing economic conditions of tribal peoples, and redefining their place in the American socioeconomic landscape.

We Average Unbeautiful Watchers : Fan Narratives and the Reading of                                                           American Sports                                                                                        Noah Cohan (Series: Sports, Media, and Society)

Sports fandom—often more than religious, political, or regional affiliation—determines how millions of Americans define themselves. In We Average Unbeautiful Watchers, Noah Cohan examines contemporary sports culture to show how mass-mediated athletics are in fact richly textured narrative entertainments rather than merely competitive displays. While it may seem that sports narratives are “written” by athletes and journalists, Cohan demonstrates that fans are not passive consumers but rather function as readers and writers who appropriate those narratives and generate their own stories in building their sense of identity.

Critically reading stories of sports fans’ self-definition across genres, from the novel and the memoir to the film and the blog post, We Average Unbeautiful Watchers recovers sports games as sites where fan-authors theorize interpretation, historicity, and narrative itself. Fan stories demonstrate how unscripted sporting entertainments function as identity-building narratives—which, in turn, enhances our understanding of the way we incorporate a broad range of texts into our own life stories.

Building on the work of sports historians, theorists of fan behavior, and critics of American literature, Cohan shows that humanistic methods are urgently needed for developing nuanced critical conversations about athletics. Sports take shape as stories, and it is scholars in the humanities who can best identify how they do so—and why that matters for American culture more broadly.

Women in the Writings of Mari Sandoz                                                    Edited and with an introduction by Renee M. Laegreid and Shannon D. Smith, Foreword by John Wunder (Series: Sandoz Studies, Volume 1)

Mari Sandoz, born on Mirage Flats, south of Hay Springs, Nebraska, on May 11, 1896, was the eldest daughter of Swiss immigrants. She experienced firsthand the difficulties and pleasures of the family’s remote plains existence and early on developed a strong desire to write. Her keen eye for detail combined with meticulous research enabled her to become one of the most valued authorities of her time on the history of the plains and the culture of Native Americans.

Women in the Writings of Mari Sandoz is the first volume of the Sandoz Studies series, a collection of thematically grouped essays that feature writing by and about Mari Sandoz and her work. When Sandoz wrote about the women she knew and studied, she did not shy away from drawing attention to the sacrifices, hardships, and disappointments they endured to forge a life in the harsh plains environment. But she also wrote about moments of joy, friendship, and—for some—a connection to the land that encouraged them to carry on.

The scholarly essays and writings of Sandoz contained in this book help place her work into broader contexts, enriching our understanding of her as an author and as a woman deeply connected to the Sandhills of Nebraska.

 

Posted in Books & Reading, General, Information Resources, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Nebraska Public Library Accreditation 2019

The 2019 Public Library Accreditation process opened on July 1.

Sixty-five Nebraska public libraries are due for re-accreditation in 2019. Forty-seven additional public libraries that submitted their annual statistics for the Public Library Survey and the Nebraska Supplemental Survey are also eligible to apply for accreditation. These two groups of libraries have been contacted with details on how to initiate and go through the process.

The purpose of Public Library Accreditation is to encourage excellent library service in Nebraska communities. It is a measure of community pride in the library services it offers to its citizens. Through the questions in the Application Form, libraries are measured against guidelines developed by a task force of professional librarians. The guidelines are community-based, so that each library can determine its own priorities based on local community needs. To help libraries address how the library will serve the unique needs of its own community, libraries applying for accreditation also must submit a Community Needs Response Plan.

Completed Accreditation Applications and up-to-date Community Needs Response Plans are due October 1. The Applications and Plans will be evaluated together and by December 31 libraries will be informed of their new Accreditation Level: Bronze, Silver, or Gold. Accreditation is valid for three years.

To see the complete list of all accredited Nebraska public libraries, check the Accreditation Status webpage.

For any questions about Nebraska Public Library Accreditation, contact Christa Porter, 800-307-2665, 402-471-3107.

Posted in Library Management | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: Pretty Sweet Tech – Enhance Your Online Security with Password Management Tools

Learn how to ‘Enhance Your Online Security with Password Management Tools’ on the next FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, July 3, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

New special monthly episodes of NCompass Live! Join the NLC’s Technology Innovation Librarian, Amanda Sweet, as she guides us through the world of library-related Pretty Sweet Tech.

Password Management Tools can help you keep your passwords straight, develop strong passwords, and make it infinitely more difficult for hackers to get ahold of your sensitive information. This session will cover the following topics:

  • What are the main threats to my online security?
  • How can I prevent this from happening?
  • Examples of good online password security
  • A demonstration/ overview of LastPass Password Manager

You’ll also have access to a handout with lots of handy information to keep patrons informed about their online security options.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • July 10 – Fun, Easy, and Inexpensive Teen Nights (aka After Hours)
  • July 17 – ACRL Outcome Measurement Made Easy: Project Outcome for Academic Libraries
  • July 24 – The Golden Sower Award: Nebraska’s Children’s Choice Literary Award
  • July 31 – How Does Your Library Garden Grow?
  • Aug. 7 – Life in Fort Schuyler: The Challenges Faced at the SUNY Maritime College Library
  • Aug. 14 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Aug. 21 – Research – the Key to Library Design
  • Aug. 28 – Eliminating Late Fines is a Win-Win for Your Library and Community

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

Posted in Education & Training, Pretty Sweet Tech, Technology | Tagged , | Leave a comment