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Local Poet Paul Piper to read @ Village Books July 28

 Local Poet Paul Piper will read from his new work
Dogs and Other Poems

Thursday, July 28, 7:00 pm.
at Village Books, 1200 11th St. Fairhaven




"Dogs and Other Poems by Paul S. Piper is a collection of poems written over the past two years. The poems are whimsical, funny, philosophical and spiritual, and are influenced by the great Japanese poet Kobayashi Issa, and the persona of poems of Robert Aitken (Zen Master Raven), as well as numerous others.  He is currently a librarian at Western Washington University in Bellingham.

Village Books is pleased to carry copies of Paul's latest book, Dogs & Other Poems, as well as copies of his poetry book Now & Then. Please call 360-671-2626 to obtain copies.

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What's English 101 Done for Me Lately?

Writing Instruction Support Sessions - English 101

Q: Why do upper-division students still struggle with writing conventions?

Q: I heard they're doing podcasts in ENG 101. Don't students need more instruction in writing

Q: What percentage of WWU students take English 101, or get any university writing instruction during their first two years?

Communication/Writing was one of three areas of weakness identified in the Faculty Senate 2016 General Education Task Force Report.  The Writing Instruction Support (WIS) program will host a discussion about English 101 and its place in Western’s curriculum on January 17 from 4 to 5 pm and January 18 from noon to 1pm in HH232.  Participants will include Director of Composition Jeremy Cushman, Assistant Director Shannon Kelly, English 101 graduate TAs, and English 101 students—including voices dissatisfied with the current 101 experience. Join us to learn more about these issues and bring your own questions for discussion.

Have questions, but can’t attend? Please send queries to Julie Dugger, Director of WIS at Western,

The WIS program provides direct assistance to faculty members who are teaching writing intensive courses within their disciplines, offering personalized consultations on a variety of topics, including writing course syllabi, assignments, response methods, and evaluation schemes.  WIS is a program of Western Libraries and a Learning Commons partner.  

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A Touch of Zen

Masters of Asian Cinema: “A Touch of Zen”  

The next film in the Masters of Asian Cinema series (formerly known as the “Masters of Japanese Cinema” series) is King Hu’s 1971 epic, A Touch of Zen. It screens Tuesday, January 10th at 6:30pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street.

King Hu (Hu Jinquan) is considered to be one of the most important innovators in martial arts cinema in Hong Kong, and also later in Taiwan.  He got his start as an assistant to Li Han-hsiang for The Love Eterne, a “yellow plum” opera film from 1963.  His second feature, Come Drink With Me (1966), helped solidify his reputation as a martial arts film director.  

King Hu exploits the editing and the vertical space of his films in fresh ways, lending a dynamism that became very influential.  Hu’s films often depict skilled fighters resisting corrupt government officials, and important roles were given to “nuxia,” or female knights-errant.  

Golden Swallow, the nuxia character from Come Drink With Me, was played by Chang Pei-Pei, who was later given the role of Jade Fox in Lee Ang’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000), a film considered to be influenced by precedents established by Hu’s work.  According to series curator and WWU librarian Jeff Purdue, A Touch of Zen may be the film most directly responsible for the look and feel of Lee’s film, and many other martial arts films that followed from Hu’s masterpiece.  

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 promises to continue that rich tradition.  Each film in the series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators. A Touch of Zen will be introduced by Dr. Li Wang, who teaches Chinese at Western.

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Barney Scout Mann & the Pacific Crest Trail

Barney Scout Mann to Discuss His Recent Book ‘The Pacific Crest Trail: Exploring America’s Wilderness Trail’

Pacific Crest Trail historian and avid backpacker Barney Scout Mann will speak about the history of the trail and the publication it inspired at Western Libraries at 4:00 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 23 in the Reading Room (Wilson Library, 4 Central). The event is free and open to the public.

A backpacker for 50 years, Barney Scout Mann was 13 when he went on his first 50-miler – a week-long backpack in the Sierra Nevada. In 2007, he and his wife Sandy thru-hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, spending more than five months walking a 2,650-mile continuous line from Mexico to Canada. The New York Times calls Mann “the informal historian for the trail” and Backpacker Magazine calls him a “geek for trail history.”

Earlier this year, Mann co-authored the Pacific Crest Trail Association’s new book, The Pacific Crest Trail: Exploring America’s Wilderness Trail, along with Mark Larabee. The book tells the gripping saga of this true American wilderness trail through a series of 250 historic and scenic photographs. It was recently named “Book of the Year” by Backpacker Magazine.

During his presentation, Mann will present stories, photos and videos from the trail, followed by book sales and signings.


This talk is being offered as part of the Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers program, which are events featuring presenters who are authorities in their respective fields and who have used Heritage Resources collections significantly in their research. 

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TLA Begins Jan 11 & 12

“How do we learn from one another through meaningful dialogue that addresses and creates active communities?”

That's the Teaching-Learning Academy’s BIG question for 2016-2017. Faculty, staff, community members, and more than 60 students worked collectively throughout fall quarter to create a shared question that addresses how we can better enhance the teaching and learning environment at Western. TLA participants will spend winter 2017 exploring and gathering data to address this year’s question, and all students, faculty and staff are invited to participate.

The TLA dialogue sessions begin January 11 and 12, and meets every other week for a total of five meetings for the quarter.

There are four group options:

  • Wednesdays from noon to 1:20 p.m. (Jan 11, 25; Feb 8, 22; Mar 8)
  • Wednesdays from 2 to 3:20 p.m. (Jan 11, 25; Feb 8, 22; Mar 8)
  • Thursdays from noon to 1:20 p.m. (Jan 12, 26; Feb 9, 23; Mar 9)
  • Thursdays from 2 to 3:20 p.m. (Jan 12, 26; Feb 9, 23; Mar 9)


While the sessions run for approximately 80 minutes, attendees are welcome to stop by based on their availability. All dialogue groups meet in the Learning Commons in Wilson 2 West.

Students can also participate for Library practicum credit. For more information, contact Also contact Shevell Thibou to sign up for a TLA dialogue session.

The Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA) is the central forum for the scholarship of teaching and learning at Western Washington University and brings together a broad spectrum of perspectives from across campus. Engaged in studying the intersections between teaching and learning, TLA members include faculty, students, administrators, and staff from across the University, as well as community members.

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Climbing Mount Everest

Larry Nielson and Paul Madison to Discuss Historic Climb of Mount Everest Jan. 17

Western Athletic Hall of Famer Larry Nielson and Western Athletics Historian Paul Madison will speak at Western Libraries at 12:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 17th in Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th floor). The event is free and open to the public.
During this talk, Madison will interview Nielson about his historic ascent up the world’s highest mountain, and they will also discuss what motivated Nielson to pursue mountain climbing. On May 7, 1983, Nielson, along with three other Americans and a Nepalese Sherpa, summited the peak from the southeast ridge located on the Nepal-China border. Nielson was the first American mountaineer to climb Mt. Everest without using bottled oxygen. 
Besides Everest, Nielson has climbed Mount Lobouche and the northeast face of Mount Kangchenjunga in Nepal; Peak Lenin in the former Soviet Union; Denali (Mount McKinley) and Mount La Perouse in Alaska; and on numerous occasions Mount Rainier in Washington State. 
While a student at Western, Nielson was an outstanding runner in cross country and track and field, making national appearances in both sports. Nielson completed his teaching degree at Western in 1970, and earned a Master’s degree in psychology at Washington State University in 1976. He was inducted into the WWU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000, and received an Alumni Achievement Award from Washington State University in 2010. 
Madison is serving his second year as Western Athletics Historian following nearly fifty years as Director of Sports Information at Western. He was inducted into the College Sports Information Directors of America Hall of Fame in 2011, and received the WWU Athletics Lynda Goodrich Legacy Award in 2015.  Madison first met Nielson when they were both students at Western in 1966, and he was a member of the first journalism class to graduate from Western in 1971. He is the author of the online series “Carver Memories,” which shares stories and interviews with former Western student athletes, coaches, and staff. 
The talk is offered as part of the Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers program, which are events featuring presenters who are authorities in their respective fields and who have used Heritage Resources collections significantly in their research. 
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Transfer Student Info Session Jan. 12

Are you a transfer student interested in learning more about services available to you at WWU?  

Join Western Libraries, the Learning Commons, and New Student Services on January 12 at 5:30 p.m. for a Transfer Student Info Panel where we will answer your questions about resources on campus, ranging from research and writing services to student employment opportunities.

The panel will feature representatives from the Libraries and the Learning Commons, Financial Aid, Student Employment, and the Student Business Office. Light snacks will be provided. This event is being offered as part of transfer student orientation. Event location is Western Libraries, Haggard Hall Room 222. 

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Benjamin Madley to Speak @WWU

Historian Benjamin Madley to Discuss his Research on Native American Genocide in California

Benjamin Madley, associate professor of History at the University of California at Los Angeles, will discuss his research on Native American genocide in the United States at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 18 at Western Washington University’s Academic West room 204. The event is co-sponsored by Western’s Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity, the Department of History, and the Western Libraries.  The presentation is free and open to the public; free public event parking will be available in Lot 12A – (formerly the “gravel lot,” but now paved) - on South Campus.

Between 1846 and 1873, California’s Indian population plunged from approximately 150,000 to 30,000. This is the subject of Madley’s new book, An American Genocide: The United States and the California Indian Catastrophe, 1846-1873, for which he received the 2016 Heyday Books History Award from Heyday Books Publishing House.

Madley’s presentation will explore the rise of a state-sanctioned killing machine and the broad social, judicial, and political support for genocide. He will describe precursors to the genocide and explain how the Gold Rush stirred vigilante violence, the involvement of state and federal officials, the taxpayer dollars that supported the violence, indigenous resistance, who did the killing, and why the killings ended. Besides evaluating government officials’ culpability, Madley considers why the slaughter constituted genocide and how other possible genocides within and beyond the Americas might be investigated.

Madley is a historian of Native America, the United States, and colonialism in world history. He writes about American Indians as well as colonial genocides in Africa, Australia, and Europe, often applying a transnational and comparative approach. Madley's current research explores Native American labor in the making of the western United States. He earned his bachelor’s degree at Yale University, his master’s degree at Oxford University, and a doctorate at Yale. He then served as an Andrew Mellon Postdoctoral fellow at Dartmouth College before joining the faculty at UCLA where he is now associate professor of History and interim chair of the university’s American Indian Studies program.

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