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Summer Reading List: Behind the Beautiful Forevers

The UC Berkeley Summer Reading list is an annual compilation of recommended (though not required) readings suggested by Cal faculty, staff, and students as a welcome to incoming freshmen and transfer students.

This week we will take a closer look at
Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity
Katherine Boo
New York: Random House, 2012
Reading Katherine Boo's Pulitzer Prize winning Behind the Beautiful Forevers leaves one's mind and heart shaken and changed. Her thick and intense description of people striving to survive a makeshift settlement in the shadow of luxury hotels near the Mumbai airport in India reads like a gripping novel that is all too real in its tale of poverty and depredation, of human frailty and strength. On every page you'll find the makings of a tragedy but also glimmers of possibilities for surviving tragedy. And on every page you'll learn from Boo's unsentimental empathy and insight how to think with respect about the hard and complex condition of life under terrible stress. You'll leave the book equipped with her deep insights into how people survive alongside one another in an era and place of tumultuous change. And you'll leave amazed at the writer's commitment to getting the story right by living within it and rendering it in pitch perfect prose.
This book has been chosen for the On the Same Page program for 2015, which means that each new student will receive a copy over the summer to read in preparation for the author's visit and other program activities in the fall.
ALAN TANSMAN
Professor
East Asian Languages and Cultures
This post was contributed by
Michael Larkin
Lecturer, College Writing Programs
Tim Dilworth
First Year Coordinator, Library
Jonathan Garrett
Site designer, Doe & Moffitt Libraries

Book Cover: Random House 2012

The UC Berkeley Summer Reading List is an annual compilation of recommended (though not required) readings suggested by Cal faculty, staff, and students as a welcome to incoming freshmen and transfer students.


This week we take a closer look at


Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity
Katherine Boo
New York: Random House, 2012


"Reading Katherine Boo's Pulitzer Prize winning Behind the Beautiful Forevers leaves one's mind and heart shaken and changed. Her thick and intense description of people striving to survive a makeshift settlement in the shadow of luxury hotels near the Mumbai airport in India reads like a gripping novel that is all too real in its tale of poverty and depredation, of human frailty and strength. On every page you'll find the makings of a tragedy but also glimmers of possibilities for surviving tragedy. And on every page you'll learn from Boo's unsentimental empathy and insight how to think with respect about the hard and complex condition of life under terrible stress. You'll leave the book equipped with her deep insights into how people survive alongside one another in an era and place of tumultuous change. And you'll leave amazed at the writer's commitment to getting the story right by living within it and rendering it in pitch perfect prose."

ALAN TANSMAN
Professor
East Asian Languages and Cultures

This book has been chosen for the On the Same Page program for 2015, which means that each new student will receive a copy over the summer to read in preparation for the author's visit and other program activities in the fall.

This post was contributed by


Michael Larkin
Lecturer, College Writing Programs

Tim Dilworth
First Year Coordinator, Library


Jonathan Garrett
Site designer, Doe & Moffitt Libraries

May 28, 2015 | Categories: Featured News | agorden

Rare Books and Manuscripts Section Conference

Photo Source: Sophia Hussain via CC, http://bit.ly/1F99HNC

The ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) will host its 56th annual conference in Oakland and Berkeley from June 23 to June 26, immediately preceding the American Library Association Conference in San Francisco. Preserve the Humanities! Special Collections as Liberal Arts Laboratory, to be held at the Oakland Marriott City Center and on the UC Berkeley campus, will explore the role of special collections libraries and archives in the humanities through a rich array of programming, including plenary sessions, seminars, workshops, short papers, posters, and participant-driven discussions.

In the four days of the conference, speakers will focus on the collaborative partnerships forged amongst archivists, librarians, researchers, and teaching faculty and position libraries as laboratories for the liberal arts and sciences. If special collections libraries and archives contain the raw material for humanistic inquiry, librarians and archivists can play an active role in research and teaching in these fields.

Naturally, given that this conference is being held in our backyard, numerous University Library and Affiliated Libraries staff members will be playing central roles:

Opening Plenary: The Big Picture
Wednesday, June 24 - 8:30 to 10:00am, Oakland Marriott, Grand Ballroom
Elaine Tennant, James D. Hart Director of The Bancroft Library and Professor of German, will join Janice Radway (Northwestern University) and Neil Safier (Brown University) in presenting the broad issues in the humanities in conjunction with recent trends in higher education.

Participant-Driven Session 3: In Depth at the Bancroft: The Lifecycle of Objects
Thursday, June 25 - 9:15 to 10:45am, Bancroft Library Reading Room
James Eason, Theresa Salazar, and David Faulds from The Bancroft Library will lead participants in a materials-based examination of the wandering lives of cultural heritage materials. This session will be assisted by Bancroft staff members Lee Anne Titangos and Ciara Crowley.

Seminar K: Mess Is Lore: Navigating the Unwieldy World of Social Media
Thursday, June 25 - 2:00 to 3:30pm, Hertz Hall
Shannon K. Supple, Head of Reference and Research Services at The Bancroft Library, will be joined by Leslie Fields (Mt. Holyoke College), John Overholt (Harvard University), Julia Gardner (University of Chicago), and Colleen Theisen (University of Iowa) in examining how social media can transform the way librarians and archivists engage with collections, users, and each other.

Papers Panel 9: Cutting Edge Technologies
Thursday, June 25 - 2:00 to 3:30pm, Morrison Library
Mary W. Elings of the Bancroft Library Digital Collections Unit, along with MIMS student Janine Heiser, will present their paper, "ArchExtract: An Automated Topic Modeling Application for Processing and Accessing Large Text-Based Digital Archives," based on a project supported by Bancroft's 2015 Archival Technologies Fellowship and a UC Berkeley School of Information Summer Non-Profit Internship Grant.

Additionally, there were be several tours taking place on campus during the RBMS conference:

UC Berkeley Campus Tour
Tuesday, June 23 - 9:30am to 3:00pm
William Benemann, Berkeley Law Archivist, and Steven Finacom will be leading a walking tour focused on the architecture and history the Berkeley campus, including such landmarks as the Campaniles, the Hearst Memorial Mining Building, Doe Library, The Bancroft Library, Wheeler Hall, Sather Gate, Sproul Plaza, and South Hall. The group will be stopping for lunch at the Free Speech Movement Cafe.

Bancroft Library Gallery
Thursday, June 25 - 11:00 to 11:30am & 2:00 to 2:30pm, Bancroft Library
Bancroft Library pictorial collections curatorial assistant Christine Hult-Lewis will offer guided tours of the current exhibit Highlights and Shadows: Books on Photography from the Reva and David Logan Collection.

The Bancroft Library
Thursday, June 25 - 11:00am to 12:30pm & 2:00 to 3:30pm, Bancroft Library
David de Lorenzo, Associate Director and Head of Technical Services, will offer guided tours of The Bancroft Library.

Museum of Vertebrate Zoology
Thursday, June 25 - 11:00am to 12:30pm, Valley Life Sciences Building
Christine Fidler, archivist at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology (MVZ), is coordinating a guided tour of the Museum's extensive archive of field notebooks, photographs, annotated maps, and personal papers, along with its stellar mammalogy, ornithology, and herpetology specimen collections.

Self-Guided Campus Exhibits
Thursday, June 25 - 11:00am to 3:30pm, Various locations
Jennifer Nelson of the Robbins Collection is coordinating a self-guided tour of UC Berkeley's treasures and curiosities. Library sites included on the tour include The Bancroft Library Gallery, Brown Gallery (Doe Library), Moffitt Cases (Moffitt Library), The Robbins Collection, Berkeley Law Archives, Environmental Design Library, Jean Gray Hargrove Music Library, Earth Studies Library, Rowell Cases (University Archives), Ethnic Studies Library, and more...

The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art & Life
Thursday, June 25 - 2:00 to 3:15pm, 2121 Allston Way
Gary Handman and Francesco Spagnolo of the Magnes Collection will introduce visitors to the remarkably diverse array of archive, library, and museum holdings, including art, objects, texts, music, and historical documents, about the Jews in the Global Diaspora and the American West.

Please consult the conference program for a complete listing of programs and events.

The Local Arrangements Committee is chaired by Randal Brandt of The Bancroft Library and includes members David Faulds, Mary Elings, Teresa Mora, and Shannon K. Supple. This committee coordinates many aspects of hosting a national conference, from developing the conference website, program brochure, and restaurant guide to identifying and organizing area tours and welcoming and orienting attendees. The Program Planning Committee, charged with developing the conference sessions, from plenaries to papers, also includes Shannon K. Supple.

Generous financial and logistical support for the 2015 RBMS Conference has been provided by the UC Berkeley Library and The Bancroft Library. The entire day's programming on Thursday, June 25, will be held on campus. Sessions will be running throughout the day in the Morrison Library, 180 Doe, The Bancroft Library, Banatao Auditorium (Sutardja Dai Hall), and Hertz Hall. Attendees will be treated to a Welcome Coffee and a Picnic Lunch on Doe Upper Terrace. RBMS extends a huge Thank You to University Librarian Tom Leonard, Bancroft Library Director Elaine Tennant, Elise Woods, Zsuzsu Listro, Kris Leonardo, and a host of others for their support and assistance in showing colleagues from around the country that Berkeley is a fabulous and special place.

May 25, 2015 | Categories: Featured News | chennesy

Digitizing UCB Theses and Dissertations

Photo Source: Pieter Van Marion via CC, http://bit.ly/1F9bt1j

The Northern Regional Library Facility (NRLF), as you may know, houses the majority of UC Berkeley's library collections, and services all ten UC campuses through item storage, preservation, and access.

One important collection at the NRLF is the historical dissertations and theses of UC Berkeley, which were produced between 1910 and the early 2000s. In partnership with Google, CDL staff, and the Library Systems Office, the NRLF began a project to digitize approximately 45,000 unique UCB dissertations and theses, making them digitally available and accessible to scholars all over the world.

The first shipment of UCB dissertations and theses was sent to Google on February 9, 2015 and the project is expected to be complete by June 2016. More than 7,000 items have been sent to date and all books will be indexed and searchable on Google Books and HathiTrust. Once digitized, the UCB dissertations will be a significant addition to the digital research corpus.

A few example titles in OskiCat:

May 22, 2015 | Categories: Featured News | chennesy

New Library Guide on Data and Digital Scholarship

The new Data and Digital Scholarship guide is a great resource for students and scholars interested in topics such as data science, data management, e-Science, digital humanities, APIs, and text or data mining. The guide provides a brief introduction to selected campus resources that provide support in these areas. Campus groups and projects, lectures, events, and labs and service centers are all included.

Whether it's numeric data, geospatial data, or digital curation that you're interested in, this should be a good place to find digital research tools, software, and assistance on campus to aid you in your research.

May 20, 2015 | Categories: Featured News | Iris Wu

Construction projects impact access to Doe and Moffitt Libraries

Access from South Hall Road to the Doe South entrance and beyond will be blocked for construction starting Monday, May 18th and ending approximately Wednesday, July 22nd. New handicap parking spots will be installed in the South Hall Annex space across from the Doe Library and the old spots will be removed.

These construction projects will impact access to the Doe Library south entrance and as well as drop-off access to the front of Moffitt Library during the 2015 summer session.

During construction, deliveries and drop-off parking for the Doe Library will be relocated to the three spaces across from the Bancroft Library, on the north side of the Campanile on University Drive. The Development and Bancroft reserved parking spots will be temporarily relocated to the Dwinelle Parking Lot.

The project will cause noise and dust at times throughout the duration of the project. Filter media will be placed on air intake locations to prevent dust and debris from entering buildings or affecting equipment that could be damaged.

This project includes a significant impact on the daily routines of many people, and we greatly appreciate your patience and forbearance.

Please contact ldofac@lists.berkeley.edu with questions, problems, or concerns.

May 18, 2015 | Categories: Library News | agorden

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