The editor of this work is considered a leader in the field. He is Professor of American Literature at Nihon University, Tokyo. Other books by A. Robert Lee include Designs of Blackness: Mappings in the Literature and Culture of Afro-America, Black Fiction: New Studies in the Afro-American Novel since 1945, and Multicultural American Literature: Comparative Black, Native, Latino/a and Asian American Fictions.
This set is noteworthy because being five volumes long, it is able to trace African American writing from slave texts to recent Nobel Prize winning novels. Each volume includes different parts. Volume One includes African American literary-cultural statements, Overviews, and Theory perspectives. Volume Two includes Oral tradition and legacy, Literary critiques and slavery studies, and Early and reconstruction African American texts. Volume Three includes New Negro and Harlem Renaissance, Richard Writing, Chester Himes, Ann Petry, Frank Yerby, Margaret Walker, and John A. Williams, and finally Ellison and Baldwin. Volume Four covers Modern African American fiction. Volume five includes Modern African American poetry, African American drama, and African American autobiography. Each part includes different essays written by scholars.
The entire set has a lot of valuable content, but several things especially stand out. Part One of Volume One includes famous essays and speeches written by writers and intellectuals like Frederick Douglass, Zora Neale Hurston, LeRoi Jones, and Alice Walker. Part Four of Volume Two includes a section on oral tradition, an important part of African American culture. Volume Four is completely devoted to Modern African American fiction, so you get essays about not just the major names like Toni Morrison, but also essays about various other important writers, such as Ishmael Reed, Paule Marshall, Ernest Gaines, Octavia Butler, Barbara Chase-Riboud, Edwidge Danticat, etc.
There is also a selective historical chronology and a very extensive bibliography of African American writing. Anyone wanting to learn more about African American writing would benefit from checking out this set of criticism. Many important writers, theories, themes, and criticism are represented in these volumes.
Seamlessly print from your own devices with Google Cloud Print. The Miami University Libraries Google Cloud Printing service is now available. Simply click one of the links below to use our public printers with your Google account on any device that runs Google Chrome(PC/MAC/ANDROID/iOS).
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We are happy to announce that we are currently in the midst of a trial of a new innovative iPad app titled Browzine. Go to the App Store and download it now for free and log in via your Miami University credentials. It allows Miami University students and faculty to:
This is a very slick new product. Take a look and let us know what you think! Email Jason Michel @ email@example.com with questions and comments.
The editor of this book is a Professor of English, and Collins Professor of the Humanities, at the University of Oregon. His other books include Globalization and the Humanities and Imagining the Nation: Asian American Literature and Cultural Consent.
This set focuses on valuable criticism. As the editor explains in the introduction, "Students and scholars of Asian American literature should therefore consider this set of Asian American criticism a vital first-stop research and pedagogical resource from which to embark on further explorations" (23).
Each volume covers on a different aspect of literature. Volume One covers Literary History: Criticism and Theory, Volume Two covers Prose: Fiction and Non-Fiction, Volume Three covers Poetry, and Volume Four covers Drama and Performance.
The essays included here are written by a variety of critics, including Lisa Nakamura, Angela C. Pao, Cheryl Higashida, Gary Y. Okihiro, etc. Some of the authors that are analyzed in these essays include Maxine Hong Kingston, Gish Jen, Ha Jin, Jhumpa Lahiri, Ruth Ozeki, Laurence Yep, Amy Tan, Chay Yew, Myung Mi Kim, etc.
If you want to read some of the very short stories that she is famous for, check out some of the following titles:
Samuel Johnson is Indignant: Stories. King Library (2nd floor) | PS3554.A9356 S35 2001
The collected stories of Lydia Davis. King Library (2nd floor) | PS3554.A9356 A6 2009
Varieties of Disturbance: Stories. King Library (2nd floor) | PS3554.A9356 V37 2007
Break It Down. King Library (2nd floor) | PS3554.A9356 B74 1996
Almost No Memory. King Library (2nd floor) | PS3554.A9356 A79 1997
If you find you enjoy her style of short stories, you might want to check out some of these "flash fiction" titles:
Flash Fiction: Very Short Stories edited by James Thomas. King Library (2nd floor) | PS648.S5 F58 1992
Fast Forward: A Collection of Flash Fiction edited by K. Scott Forman. King Library (2nd floor) | PS648.S5 F38 2008
Flash Fiction Forward: 80 Very Short Stories edited by James Thomas. King Library (2nd floor) | PS648.S5 F577 2006
Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction: Tips from Editors, Teachers, and Writers in the Field edited by Tara L. Masih. King Library (2nd floor) | PN3373 .F53 2009
Show Me The Awesome: 30 Days of Self-Promotion is an initiative by Sophie Brookover, Liz Burns, and Kelly Jensen to encourage librarian bloggers to think and talk about self-promotion. You can follow the series with the tag #30awesome on Twitter, Tumblr, Vine, and Instagram
As part of “Show Me The Awesome”, I want to step away from our usual fare and talk instead about the challenges of establishing a voice for yourself and your library in new settings. Being the newest member of our library staff, self-promotion for me is as much showing my worth to my peers as to our patrons. My challenge is to promote myself in a way that convinces my new coworkers to make room for me and my work. In parallel to establishing my voice here, I am also working to find a voice for our library in online communities. Much like being a new hire to the department, joining a social media community requires a degree of self-promotion to show that you are able to contribute to the conversation. One of the key elements to a successful social media presence for an institution is a feeling of personability; social media should not be treated as a bullhorn for attention, but rather as an opportunity to build connections. Consequently, it is important for the library to feel like an individual when engaging other users, and I cannot help but see an association between finding my voice among my new peers and finding the library’s voice online.
As with any new setting – physical or digital – the first (and often hardest!) step to making your voice heard is joining the conversation. It can be intimidating to enter a workplace community and show you can make valuable contributions, but some of the best advice I’ve been given about starting a new job was ‘remember that they hired you because you have something they’re missing’; the first hurdle to promoting your abilities is passed. However, when it comes to social media, there is no careful hiring process for quality control; for better or for worse, the Internet gives everyone a chance to make their voice heard. So how can a library promote itself and promise valuable contributions to online conversations?
Like the newcomer to the staff, the first step is knowing what your library has to offer that’s been lacking. By their nature, special collections libraries like mine have many things that are rare, unique, or even uncataloged – but by that same nature these are not materials that can leave the library. Developing a social media presence where awareness of these materials can be shared and gain popularity is a great opportunity to promote the library.
However, there is also a temptation to focus too much on showing off what you or your library has to offer. An early mistake I made in promoting the library with social media was relying on one-directional communication. Tumblr, a platform the university libraries had not previously engaged, was my first solo social media effort. Tumblarians – as the librarians, library students, and sundry bibliophiles on Tumblr call themselves – are a diverse group who welcomed me and the special collections blog warmly on my initial appearance. With some assistance from the excellent and helpful ex-tabulis, we got on a few lists of library blogs, and soon had a few dozen followers. But it wasn’t long until that number slipped. My mistake? I was talking too much and listening too little. I was researching what people were talking about and contributing from our collection, but that isn’t a conversation. As important as it is to show your own talents, part of promoting yourself is also showing that you are someone that can build connections and relationships.
At many libraries, the in-person interview process will involve lunches, coffee breaks, or other similar gatherings. While it might be a nice change after hours of presentations and questions, these ‘social interviews’ are every bit as important as the demonstration of your professional qualities. Libraries are collaborative environments and those social events demonstrate how you would fit in to the workplace community – do you seem to be someone they could write papers with, travel to conferences with, see every weekday for the next ten years? Similarly, social media users’ evaluation of your library and blog will not be based solely on your ability to formally present information, but their ability to feel some sort of connection to your institution.
Like the coffee break during the interview process, breaks from serious posting are important in developing your library’s presence online. To date, my single most successful Tumblr post (judging by the number of times it was liked and reblogged) was a photo of a bit of manuscript waste in a 17th century book – nothing overly rare or unique, but a joking exchange with another librarian (again ex-tabulis) about turning it into a historical mystery movie script saw it reblogged by around thirty other users. Hardly viral, but encouraging nonetheless.
What got the image of our book spread was not the value in it alone, but that little connection that was built in the brief back-and-forth conversation. Formal language does little in the way of effectively building social relationships, but relaxed, friendly language goes hand in hand with the lateral connections that social media relies on. Self-promotion is not only a matter of showing what you can do, but showing that you can fit into the community you’re joining.
Besides, even academic libraries need to be a place of fun sometimes.
See y’all online.
Marcus Ladd Special Collections Librarian
Late last year a new book by Dr. John H. “Jack” White, Jr. (MU ’58) was published by the Indiana University Press. Wet Britches and Muddy Boots: A History of Travel in Victorian America is noteworthy for many reasons, as the laudatory reviews now appearing make clear.
The book spans the millennia of human travel but focuses primarily on travel in the nineteenth century, when transportation was revolutionized by industrialization. It especially focuses on the experience of travel. What was it like to ride a stagecoach from one town to the next? Or travel by steamboat? What were roads like? Accommodations? Food? And how long did it take to travel distances we scarcely give a thought to today?
Jack has written the work as popular history; it is indeed highly readable and illustrated with a wide range of helpful and fascinating images. But it is also based on meticulous research. Jack, after all, retired as Senior Historian after a long curatorial career at the Smithsonian Institution in the Division of Transportation, Museum of History and Technology. His authority is well-established by a number of distinguished publications.
We in Special Collections are especially delighted with the book because Jack is a loyal friend and supporter and because he did much of his research right here. Our collections are rich in primary resources for the nineteenth century, and transportation is a particularly strong area. We know how much time and effort Jack invested in research and writing. So we take special pride in his achievement.
Jack’s achievement is also an achievement for the former Head of Special Collections, Janet Stuckey, who supported, assisted, and (according to Jack) occasionally pushed him to the finish line. Jack is generously donating the profits from the book to the Miami University Libraries Janet Stuckey Fund, which supports acquisitions for Special Collections.
So it’s a win-win. And win. That last “win” is yours when you read the book.
Assistant Dean for Technical Services and
Head, Special Collections & Archives
The Center for Digital Scholarship had its Open House on Tuesday to much fanfare. The CDS is both a physical facility and a service of the Libraries. Our vision is to serve as a collaborative partner with faculty, students, and staff by providing digital library , data repository, multi-media, digitization, scholarly communication, geospatial and data management services so that members of the Miami community can accomplish their research, scholarly, and teaching goals.
We have print materials with titles, such as
That’s not all! There are plenty of relevant events and opportunities all around the country worthy of your attention. On a closer level, visit the EPA’s “Cleanups in My Community” page. Finally, find out even more you can personally do to protect and preserve our atmosphere by reading some of these simple steps.
For more information, visit www.epa.gov/earthday or stop by Government Documents in Ground Floor, King Library.