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Jonathan Evison: The Art & Craft of Writing

Whatcom READS! hosts Jonathan Evison at WWU

The 2017 Whatcom READS! selection is The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, a big-hearted and inspired novel by author Jonathan Evison. As part of the programming for WhatcomREADS!, Evison will be at Western Washington University on Saturday, March 11 from 2-3pm for “The Art and Craft of Writing” event. This event takes place in Western Libraries Reading Room (Wilson Library 4th Floor Central), and is free and open to the public.

Jonathan Evison is an American writer known for his novels All About Lulu (winner of the Washington State Book Award), West of Here (New York Times bestseller, winner of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award and the Booklist Editor’s Choice Award) and The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving (currently in development for film).

In 2009 and 2011, Evison was nominated by the American Book Association as “Most Engaging Author.” In his teens, Evison was a founding member and frontman of the Seattle punk band March of Crimes, which included future members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. Born in San Jose, California, he now lives on an island in western Washington with his family. His latest novel, This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!, was published in September 2015.

Whatcom READS! is a county-wide program that encourages everyone to read and discuss the same book. Each year, a new book is selected by Whatcom READS organizers. Community members are encouraged to read or listen to the book, share it with family, friends and neighbors, and participate in programs and special events that follow the themes in the book selection. Each series culminates with a visit by the author of the selected book, who makes numerous free-of-charge presentations at locations throughout the county.

Whatcom READS! is organized by all the public and academic libraries in Whatcom County and  community partner, Village Books, with significant funding from Friends of the Bellingham Public Library and Whatcom County Library Foundation, and support from other local businesses and organizations.

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Canines on Campus Return!

"Canines on Campus" Program Visits Western Libraries

Western Libraries will once again be joined by members of the “Canines on Campus” registered therapy animal program from Monday March 6th through Thursday March 16th. 

Teams of humans and animals (which now includes TWO cats, Smokey and Raul!) will be located in the gallery space at the end of the Skybridge on the Wilson side of the library off and on between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. during both the week preceding and the week of final exams. 

During this two-week period, this space will be reserved exclusively for the registered Canines on Campus therapy animal program, and animals who are not official Canines on Campus volunteers are not permitted in this area. 

Additionally, Western Libraries would like to remind everyone that while ADA service animals are welcome in the library, pets may not be brought into library facilities at any time.

The therapy animals who are part of the Canines on Campus program are registered through several different agencies and have met certain standards of skills and aptitude required for their acceptance into the program. Whatcom Therapy Dogs and Dogs on Call are the two organizations which provide volunteers to the Canines on Campus program.

For more information about the upcoming Canines on Campus visit, a schedule which includes the names of the volunteers, photos of the animals, and the times when they will be available for visiting, will be posted on an easel in the designated gallery area.

Remember to stop by the library to say hi or de-stress when you are in need of a break from studying for finals, working on projects, or writing those last few papers!  

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Connecting Literature to Life

Connecting Literature to Life: Childhood Inspiration Comes Full Circle

Keri Krout can still recall the long hot California summers of her childhood, and how they were marked by each arrival from the mail-order Scholastic book club. Krout and her siblings would gather around their mother, eagerly watching as she opened up the cardboard wrapping that encased the book.  But the one book Krout remembers most of all is Andrew Henry’s Meadow, written and illustrated by Doris (Wernstedt) Burn.

“We not only read her story, but I remember studying the pictures for hours and imagining my life in a meadow full of friends,” explained Krout. “My home of choice was the bird house built up in the sky. I imagined what a cool breeze would feel like, and the sound of the birds singing just to me.”

 Andrew Henry's Meadow is the story of a boy who feels ignored and unappreciated by his family and decides to build a special retreat for himself in a nearby meadow. Other children from the neighborhood join him, so he builds houses for them as well, each one customized to complement their interests and hobbies.

“My brother and I attempted to build a pulley system in his bedroom like Andrew Henry built for his younger brothers, but I admit our attempts fell short,” said Krout. She noted that while other books continued to arrive in the mail, it was Andrew Henry’s Meadow that impacted her the most.

“I grew up working with children,” said Krout, who now works as the manager of the Associated Students Child Development Center (CDC) at Western Washington University. “I think perhaps I understand children’s need to have their own space thanks to Andrew Henry.”

Krout recalled how her favorite childhood story resurfaced when she first began working at Western as she walked through The Outback on her way to work. She encountered a small cabin and was astonished to learn its connection to Doris Burn, as the cabin had once belonged to June and Farrar Burn, Doris Burn’s parents-in-law.

“My beginning started with a simple story of the need to create, to escape, to be understood and accepted.  And here I was, standing by the cabin which had belonged to the family of the woman whose life and creating influenced mine in ways I’m sure I can’t count.  I felt a sense of utter gratitude of how life can take a person full circle,” Krout explained.

Krout relayed this experience to some of the families of the CDC, and one of the parents later emailed her about a special exhibition featuring the work of Doris Burn that was on display at Western Libraries. As part of this exhibition, Doris Burn’s daughter, the local author and multi-dimensional artist Skye Burn, was scheduled to give a special public presentation about the life and legacy of her mother. Krout knew immediately she would attend this event, and following Skye’s talk, the two women finally met in person.

“What an honor to meet her daughter and to bask in the glow of creative genius,” said Krout. “How can I begin to even thank Doris and her family?”

Burn’s work continues to speak to readers of all ages, and since her death in 2011, Andrew Henry’s Meadow has been reissued by Penguin’s Philomel Books. The title has also been published and is presently available in translation in Korea, China and Japan.  Andrew Henry's Meadow won the Washington Governor's Art Award and was a Weekly Reader book club selection.

 “Plenty of Things to Do: The Work of Northwest Children’s Author Doris Burn,” will remain on display through March 10th, and is available for viewing weekdays Monday – Friday in Special Collections, (Wilson Library 6th Floor) between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.  Additionallydigital version of the Doris Burn exhibit is now available online, as are detailed collection guides to the Doris Burn Artwork and Manuscripts and related collections of June and Farrar Burn Papers and South Burn Papers, housed and available at the Center for Pacific Northwest Studies

The pieces on display were selected from a far larger collection of Burn’s original works, which were donated to Western Libraries Heritage Resources in 2015 as a gift of the Burn Family via the Doris Burn Legacy LLC. These materials help document the cultural and artistic history of the Pacific Northwest region and were created by an artist and writer who sought specifically to engage with the needs, interests, and creativity of a younger audience.

Skye Burn’s talk, “The Strength of a Dream: A Daughter's Portrait of a Northwest Children's Author and Illustrator,” can be found in Western CEDAR and is viewable from this link.

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Fly Fishing & Literature Class

LIBR 320: Fly Fishing in American Literature and Culture

Looking for an interesting class to take next quarter?  Professor Paul Piper, who is also Western Libraries librarian for Special Collections, is teaching his popular Library 320 Class spring quarter, “Fly Fishing in American Literature and Culture.”

This class explores both the sport and art of fly fishing in American literature and culture, and considers the implications of fly fishing as a cultural phenomenon on gender, race, and both environmental and ethical concerns.  

The literature is vast, and embraces poetry, fiction and non-fiction in the genres of philosophy, spirituality, environmentalism, and much more.  

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Get Help with Citations

Winter Citation Clinics February 27th through March 3rd

Having trouble with difficult online citations? Wondering how to cite a source within a source? Stop by the Citation Clinic held in the Hacherl Research & Writing Studio, any time between 2-4 p.m.  Monday through Friday from February 27 through March 3 for answers to all of your citation questions.

While it is true that any time is citation time in the Studio, you can also get some extra help with all of your citation needs during the Fall Quarter Citation Clinic. Join us to learn some tips and tricks, or just drop in for one-on-one assistance. We can help you with APA, Chicago/Turabian, MLA, or any other citation style.

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"The General" & Matt Phelan, Feb.23

Film Event Featuring Graphic Novelist Matt Phelan

 

As part of the WWU Children's Literature Conference, the Pickford Film Center will present a screening of the film The General, on Thursday, Feb. 23, starring Buster Keaton and with acclaimed graphic novel creator Matt Phelan, who will introduce the film and then also be available for a Q&A afterwards. 

The film itself screens at 6:30 p.m. at the Pickford Film Center (1318 Bay Street), but a pre-screening reception  with champagne for the adults and sparkling cider for the kids, begins at 5:30 p.m.

Representatives from Village Books will also be in attendance and available to sell copies of Phelan’s novels, including the graphic novel that inspired this evening, Bluffton: My Summer With Buster Keaton

 

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Kaili Blues

Masters of Asian Cinema: Kaili Blues

The next Masters of Asian Cinema film is the 2015 feature Kaili Blues.  It will screen on Tuesday, February 14 at 6:30pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street in downtown Bellingham.  

Kaili Blues is the debut feature of the young filmmaker Bi Gan, set in his hometown of Kaili, Guizhou Prefecture. At the center of the film is a quest featuring a complex character, Chen, an ex-con trying to do the right thing.  Chen has two searches he has undertaken: one to find his nephew, who has been sold by Chen’s irresponsible brother, and the other to find the former lover of his elderly coworker and give him some items she has been saving.  

The journey operates on many levels, reaching back into the past and into the future, as well as plumbing psychic depths in the main character. Part of his quest involves finding some people from the Miao ethnic group, which Bi himself is part of. Bi received best director prizes at a couple of festivals for this work. Much commentary has focused on a 41-minute shot at the center of the film that unfolds in a dreamlike way.

Series curator and WWU librarian Jeff Purdue explains that this particular scene resonates with the viewers long after the time of watching this film.

“This is the sort of film that critics often describe as poetic, but here it’s more apt than usual – director Bi’s own poetry weaves through this film, making it an unlikely and less linear companion piece to the currently playing [at the Pickford], Paterson.”

Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters of Japanese Cinema series was one of the Pickford's longest running and most loved series, featuring some of the best films in World Cinema with movies that span both decades and genres. The Masters of Asian Cinema series continues that rich tradition.

Each film in the series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators. Kaili Blues will be introduced by Kristen Parris,  an Associate Professor at WWU in the Department of Political Science where she teaches Chinese Politics, East Asian Politics, and other courses in comparative politics.  

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Speaking of Maps: Maps as Lenses on Nazism

WWU Professor Ed Mathieu to speak on Feb. 23 about “Maps as Lenses on Nazism, 1772-1945”  

Western Washington University will host Dr. Ed Mathieu for a presentation titled “Maps as Lenses on Nazism, 1772 to 1945” from 4-5:00 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23 in the Map Collection area of Western Libraries. This event is free and open to the public.

Dr. Edward Mathieu is a visiting assistant professor in the Department of History at Western. He earned his PhD in modern German history from the University of Michigan and has taught courses at Western in German history, the Holocaust, gender and sexuality, Western Civilization, and World History.

The Nazi movement emerged from European and global contexts that can be explored geographically. Through the consideration of geography and geographical change, Mathieu will explain how the Nazis imagined the problems of the world and their revolution in spatial terms, and how a geographic sensibility is essential to understanding the practices and effects of Nazism.

Mathieu’s talk will examine maps related to such issues as the German diaspora in Europe, the demography of the Jews in Europe, the partition of Poland in the eighteenth century, the developing space of a united Germany in the nineteenth century, the geography of the First World War and its aftermath, Nazism’s expansionism before and during the Second World War, the geographies of mass murder, and, finally, the geography of the defeat of Nazism.

This event is co-sponsored by Western Libraries, WWU’s Department of History, and the Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity, and is part of the “Speaking of Maps” program, which are quarterly talks designed to highlight the use and value of maps in research, in teaching and learning, and in daily life.

For more information about the Map Collection or about this event, contact Dennis Matthews, WWU Map Collection Manager, at (360) 650-3272 or Dennis.Matthews@wwu.edu.

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Faculty Focus Groups

Faculty Focus Groups – Request for Participants

Western Libraries is seeking input from faculty at Western on how subject librarians can support teaching, learning, and research in departments and programs. 
 
The Libraries is currently examining the role of subject librarians and would like to align the important services librarians provide more effectively with the changing curricular, research, and teaching & learning needs of the university. 
 
As part of this effort, the Libraries invites feedback and advice from Western faculty, and is hosting a series of focus groups led by an experienced facilitator throughout the month of February. Faculty from every department at Western are invited to participate.
 
If you are interested in being a part of these focus groups, please submit this form to indicate your availability. You will be contacted within one week from the time of submission with an invitation to participate at a specific time selected from among the times you indicated.
 
Questions? Need more information? Please contact Sarah McDaniel, Director, Teaching & Learning and the Learning Commons, (360)650-7208  sarah.mcdaniel2@wwu.edu
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Framing Islam

Western Libraries Reading Series: Brian J. Bowe

Western Washington University Assistant Professor of Journalism Brian J. Bowe will discuss his research on how media coverage shapes perceptions of Muslim-Americans from 4-5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb.15 in Western Libraries Special Collections on the 6th Floor of Wilson Library. 

This presentation, "Framing Islam: How media coverage shapes perceptions of Muslim neighbors and Islamic threats," is free and open to the public.

In recent years, growing communities of Muslim-Americans have faced tensions over practicing their faith against the backdrop of global conflict and terrorism, which is represented on local levels in media coverage when Muslims assert their philosophical right to exist within American society.

Bowe’s talk will examine the ways routine decision-making processes of media workers shape the public’s perceptions of Muslims in the United States, and he will discuss the tendency for media discourse to treat Muslims as monolithic others, rather than individuals with a range of beliefs and experiences.

Bowe will focus on his research into the coverage of a series of recent controversies, including debates over mosque construction or proposals to preemptively ban Shariah from American jurisprudence. He will also explore how some reporting exhibits Islamophobia, (or indiscriminate negative attitudes directed at Islam), while other coverage shows evidence of Islamophilia, (which is the stereotypical "good Muslims” who are model citizens, in contrast to "bad Muslims," who serve as rhetorical enemies).

Bowe is a veteran journalist, author, and educator whose work examines the interplay of journalism and culture in multiple settings. Bowe earned his doctorate from Michigan State University’s Media and Information Studies program; his research specialty is media framing, and particularly news coverage of Muslims in the U.S.

Before entering academia, Bowe worked at newspapers in Michigan and New Hampshire and spent a decade in public relations. He has written extensively about music, publishing books about Judas Priest, The Ramones and The Clash. He co-edited the anthology CREEM: America’s Only Rock ’n’ Roll Magazine (2007 Collins) and has written liner notes for releases by Iggy & the Stooges, the MC5 and Was (Not Was).

This event is being offered as part of the Western Libraries Reading Series, dedicated to showcasing the scholarly and creative work of Western faculty and staff by featuring diverse speakers from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines who are engaged in research, writing, and teaching at Western.

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