Straight from the headlines to the UL : the trajectory of current events from newspapers to books

Cover of C206.c.3512  (image from publisher)

Cover of C206.c.3512
(image from publisher)

On the occasion of the anniversary of the kidnapping of the monks of Tibhirine, it is useful to consider how events in the news are reflected in published works and in the library’s collections. It is an occasion to think about how the reaction to events such as the kidnapping—or, more recently, the attacks at the offices of Charlie Hebdo—are memorialised and understood. The Library’s collections in many ways reflect this, as we try to collect broadly around events such as these. Continue reading

German art exhibition catalogues

Nowadays art exhibition catalogues are frequently very substantial items, rich in illustrative matter and with extensive introductory essays as well as detailed description and discussion of individual paintings. Catalogues of exhibitions mounted 100 years ago are usually much slighter publications, but still of value for the Library for what they reveal about which art works were displayed, and the sometimes rich associations which they reveal.


Catalogue of an exhibition of the work of German painter Hans von Marées (S405:3.d.9.38)

The catalogue of an exhibition of the work of German painter Hans von Marées, held in Berlin in 1909, has just been added to the University Library catalogue (S405:3.d.9.38). Although illustrations are included, they are small scale pictures in black and white which are tipped in to the volume. 148 paintings and drawings were shown in the exhibition, but only 12 are illustrated. Nevertheless this is in many respects an interesting publication.

Continue reading

Digital Archive of Latin American and Caribbean Ephemera

Originally posted on ejournals@cambridge:

New on eresources@cambridge A-Z: Digital Archive of Latin American and Caribbean Ephemera

The Digital Archive of Latin American and Caribbean Ephemera is the latest and most ambitious phase in Princeton’s long time commitment to building and providing access to its unparalleled Latin American Ephemera Collection. Open online access to this previously inaccessible subset of the collection became a reality in early 2015 thanks to the generous support provided by the Latin Americanist Research Resources Project (LARRP) and to a three-year starting grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). The goal of Princeton and its partners is to continue adding hundreds of new digitized ephemeral items per month in the coming years and turn this vast and exceptional collection from a practically inaccessible archive into a dynamic scholarly resource that will support present and future academic activities in interdisciplinary Latin American Studies and in the broader…

View original 123 more words

Ukrainian selection by default : the March 2015 Slavonic item(s) of the month


A selection of the books which have arrived so far.

Earlier this year, the University Library started to buy Ukrainian material by approval plan.  This method involves the vendor helping with selection by providing a tailored shortlist of books based on an agreed profile.  The first delivery of Ukrainian books selected in this way has recently arrived; this post examines some of the new arrivals.

Book selection is a major part of the work of the European Collections and Cataloguing department.  Several language areas are partially served by approval plans (a 2013 blog post discussed the French fine art approval plan), but this method had not previously been employed by the Slavonic section.  Small Ukrainian print runs, however, have often caused us to miss out on material we would like to have bought, and for this reason we decided this year to try out the use of an approval plan for material published in Ukraine.  In our profile, we stated that our main interest is in recent academic books in Russian or Ukrainian about Ukrainian or East European culture and history. Continue reading

Tristan Tzara in 1946

Terre sur terre (illustration)

Illustration from Terre sur terre (S735.c.94.47)

Many of the publications by French poet and essayist Tristan Tzara contain artwork by well-known artists of the time. Juan Gris, Paul Klee, Hans Arp, Salvador Dali, Henri Matisse, Max Ernst, Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso were all involved in joint publications with Tzara. Unfortunately none are owned by the University Library. The only early work by Tzara we have in the collections which also contains artwork is the 1946 title Terre sur terre, with drawings by André Masson (S735.c.94.47), which the Library bought in 1985.

During the German occupation of France Tzara determined to remain silent as a writer, but after the Liberation he quickly began to publish again. In August 1944 he had left Souillac for Toulouse, a centre of Resistance activity, where he joined the local branch of the Centre des Intellectuels and helped draft plans for a local museum to the Resistance. He returned to Paris late in 1945, though he would not regain his home and possessions until mid-1948. There were many hardships, but Tzara’s poetic voice had not been silenced by the war, and in 1946 he published three volumes of poetry, Terre sur terre, Le signe de vie and Entre-temps. Continue reading

No surrender, no retreat

Kosta's autobiography

Kosta’s autobiography

Seventy years after the liberation of Auschwitz, one of its survivors, Jiri Kosta, died last month at the age of 93. His life after the tortures of the Second World War was both typical of a survivor of the concentration camps as well as extraordinary. And while his experiences during the Nazi Regime shaped Kosta for the rest of his life, it was by no means limited by that experience.

That Kosta was able to live a full life was, as is so often the case with survivors of the concentration camps, down to chance. Or, in this case, down to a breadcrumb. Born in Prague in 1921 to German-Jewish parents, he was ordered in late 1941 to help set up what was to become the concentration camp Theresienstadt, in which he and his family were subsequently imprisoned. Because of his youth, he was a useful worker and managed to survive the daily routine in the concentration camp. However, he too was eventually ordered on to the last transport east to Auschwitz in October 1944, where he was to endure the mixture of torture and ritual humiliation that characterised the lives of those that were lucky enough to survive the ruthless selection process. With the advancement of the Red Army he was then forced on to a death march towards Germany. That he managed to escape to safety and survive the death march was down to luck. One morning, before the march was to set off, he had forgotten to take with him a piece of bread that he had saved and put aside. He managed to sneak back into the barracks to fetch this bread. There he found several other fellow prisoners hidden under beds who told him to do the same if he wanted to stay alive. In the chaos that the German troops were already in, the missing prisoners escaped their notice and Kosta survived. Continue reading

Indo-European Etymological Dictionaries & BrillOnline Dictionaries plaform

Originally posted on ejournals@cambridge:

Brill has launched a new platform for its online dictionaries, called BrillOnline Dictionaries.

University access to The Indo-European Etymological Dictionaries is now available on this new platform via this link or via the eresources@cambridge A_Z.

The Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series publishes the results of a major Leiden University project identifying and describing the common lexical heritage of the Indo-European languages. Under the supervision of Alexander Lubotsky, an international team of historical linguists has for more than a decade researched, collected and integrated a growing corpus of linguistic data. The data is published in a series of etymological dictionaries and will be concluded by the publication of a large Indo-European Etymological Dictionary, deemed as a successor of Julius Pokorny’s standard work published in 1959.

View original