Great Minds Think Alike

OK. Actually, many great minds don’t think alike. Compare Shakespeare to Tolstoy, Edison to Tesla, or Aristotle to Kierkegaard. Quite a few differences there, yet all are arguably geniuses.

If you are interested in reading the complete text of some great pieces of literature, science, or philosophy you may want to start with some of the books in the Andersen Library’s Great Minds Collection, such as those in the Great Books of the Western World set. Here you will find the tragedies of Euripides, the astronomy of Nicolaus Copernicus, the philosophy of Sigmund Freud, and quite a bit more.

This particular set of books was published in 1952 and, unfortunately, is substantially male and Eurocentric. There are several similar sets, a couple of which we also have. Most “great books” in such sets have been around long enough to stand the test of time, and yet aren’t particularly diverse. If you’re interested in something more recent, worldly, or written by a woman, you may have to look elsewhere. This was part of the inspiration behind the Great Minds Collection. This collection is a wonderful place to browse for books to read this summer.

All that being said, here is my stab at a few literary works you might enjoy this summer. They likely aren’t in traditional “great books” lists, but I think they should be. Some available copies are in our Great Minds Collection, while others are in the Main Collection.

  • 1Q84 (2011) by Haruki Murakami – Main Collection, PL856.U673 A61213 2011
    An ode to George Orwell’s “1984,” also well worth reading, this book tells the stories of an assassin for a secret organization who discovers that she has been transported to an alternate reality, which might have been created by a teenager and her amateur ghostwriter.
  • Aleph and Other Stories, 1933-1969 by Jorge Luis Borges – Main Collection, PQ7797 .B635 A22 1970
    These short stories journey inside the minds of an unrepentant Nazi, an imprisoned Maya priest, fanatical Christian theologians, a man awaiting his assassin, and a woman plotting vengeance on her father’s “killer.”
  • Beloved (1987) by Toni Morrison – Great Minds Collection, PS3563.O8749 B4 1987
    Inspired by a true story, this novel follows an escaped slave living in post-Civil War Ohio with her daughter and mother-in-law, who is haunted by the ghost of her dead baby girl.
  • A Dream of Red Mansions (17XX) by Cao Xueqin – Main Collection, PL2727.S2 A29 1999
    The overarching story is of two branches of an aristocratic family who reside in two large, adjacent family compounds in the capital city. The main protagonist has a special bond with his sickly cousin but is predestined to marry another.
  • The Fountainhead (1943) by Ayn Rand – Main Collection, PS3535 .A547 F6 1943
    This novels follows the trials and tribulations of a individualist former architecture student who refuses to compromise on his architectural dreams.
  • The House of the Spirits (1982) by Isabel Allende – Main Collection, PQ8098.1.L54 C313 1985
    This magical realist novel follows three generations of a South American family through their domestic and political conflicts.
  • Invisible Man (1952) by Ralph Ellison – Main Collection, PS3555 .L625 I5 1952
    In this bildungsroman, the narrator traces his life from an innocent childhood in the south to an enlightened adulthood in Harlem where he becomes invisible like other African Americans.
  • The Joy Luck Club (1989) by Amy Tan
    This novel focuses on the generational and cultural differences between a young Chinese American woman and her late mother’s Chinese friends, all members of the longstanding Joy Luck Club. To fulfill her mother’s dying wish, she joins the club and learns secrets she never dreamed of.
  • Left Hand of Darkness (1969) by Ursula LeGuin – Great Minds Collection, PS3562.E42 L4 2000
    While on a mission to an alien planet where people have no fixed gender, an earthling is sent by one nations’s leaders to a concentration camp, from which the exiled prime minister of another nation tries to rescue him.
  • The Satanic Verses (1988) by Salman Rushdie – Main Collection, PR9499.3 .R8 S28 1989
    A legendary movie star in India and “the man of a thousand voices,” fall earthward from a bombed jet toward the sea, singing rival verses in an eternal wrestling match between good and evil.
  • To the Lighthouse (1929) by Virginia Woolf – Main Collection, PR6045.O72 T6 1992
    This novel follows a family during the one summer they spent with friends in their Scottish vacation home. Offshore stands a remote, inaccessible lighthouse, an external presence in a changing world.
  • Things Fall Apart (1958) by Chinua Achebe – Great Minds Collection, PR6051.C5 T47
    The protagonist, a man driven to ameliorate the legacy of his father, at first succeeds, but later suffers as a result of his actions. An overarching theme is the growing friction between traditional village life in Nigeria and the ways of whites determined to save heathen Africans.

Whether or not you agree with my suggestions, feel free to comment below. Perhaps you have your own ideas of some new great books. I’d love to hear what you have to say.

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Faculty Author Book Signing July 29

Jim Winship, UW-Whitewater Professor of Social Work, has been a Peace Corps volunteer and a Fulbright Scholar in El Salvador, and he has co-authored four titles related to youth and migration in El Salvador. Coming of age in El Salvador, his new book, contains first-person accounts of youth in El Salvador, as well as his own research and the work of others. You can read more about Dr. Winship and his experience with El Salvador in the press release dated July 14, 2014, UW-Whitewater professor wins Fulbright award, explores Latin America.

There will be a presentation and book signing at the Irvin L. Young Memorial Library, Whitewater’s public library at 431 W. Center St., on Tues., July 29, at 7 p.m.

If you’d like to learn more, we can help! UWW students and staff can borrow the title Teen life in Latin America and the Caribbean, which contains a section on El Salvador, by making a free request through Research@UWW.

Would you like some assistance with finding additional materials? Ask a librarian!

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New Stuff Tuesday – July 22, 2014

Classical Primer: Ancient Knowledge for Modern Minds

A Classical Primer:
Ancient Knowledge for Modern Minds

by Dan Crompton
DE59 .C7 2012
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

A few years ago, I listened to a lecturer at the Young Auditorium make a case for Biblical literacy being an important part of a contemporary education. As much as I agreed with him, I felt there were also compelling cases to be made for the importance of other types of cultural literacy, one of the most important being classical literacy.

It’s hard to navigate literature, a good New York Times article, an urban downtown or even Main Street in Whitewater without running across references to the classical world of Ancient Greece and Rome. The Trojan horse, Helen, Aesop’s fables, Julius Caesar, Roman numerals in movie credits and on buildings, sorority and fraternity names, and Greek architectural columns are just a few classical elements you might run across in your quotidian world.

So if you’d like to bone up on your classical literacy, this pocket-sized Primer will get you up to speed on the basics of classical languages, history, literature, philosophy, architecture, science, and technology.

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Friday Fun: “Be a Better Bird Nerd”

I know, I know, it was only a couple of weeks ago that I used bird cams for Friday Fun. But I can’t resist another birds-on-the-brain entry!

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology challenges you to be a better bird nerd! Take its Bird Song Hero challenge, and then the “ultimate” challenge! Can you recognize the visualization of a bird’s song? There’s a brief training video first. I remember being asked to draw my visualize of some music for a class long, long ago…

Screen shot from Bird Song Hero web site

And if you’re interested in learning more, Andersen Library has resources! Searching the catalog will find titles such as A study of bird song (3rd-floor Main Collection, QL698.5 .A7 1973)and A guide to bird songs; descriptions and diagrams of the songs and singing habits of land birds and selected species of shore birds (3rd-floor Main Collection, QL698 .S355 1951). Searching article databases will find titles including “Finding Motifs in Birdsong Data in the Presence of Acoustic Noise and Temporal Jitter” (Behavioral Neuroscience, 2014, vol.128:no. 2, pp.228–236).

Want help? Ask a librarian!

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New Stuff Tuesday – July 15, 2014

Herta Muller

Herta Müller
by Brigid Haines and Lyn Marven
PT2673.U29234 Z692 2013
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

Alas, the world is often less than perfect, and this mar is reflected in the works of Herta Müller, a German-Romanian writer, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2009. She was born in Romania in 1953 and later emigrated to Germany. The novels, short stories, poems, and essays she writes and the collages she creates deal with the global experiences of oppression, dispossession, exile, migration, memory, and other themes relevant to our past, present, and future. She writes in her mother tongue, German, but has been translated into many languages including English. From her first book of short stories, Niederungen (1982), translated into English as Nadirs in 1999, to her most recent book of poetry Vater telefoniert mit den Fliegen (Father is calling the Flies) (2012) she’s been a force to reckon with.

This book is about her oeuvre, covering many topics from the realism of her poems, the gender and sexual politics of her prose, to her winning the Nobel Prize for Literature. There is even a chapter on reading her in translation, which is of particular interest here, as comparatively few Americans read German. Those of us who read her would likely be doing so in English. My boss, who has excellent German skills, could be one of the exceptions to that rule. I can read a bit too, but the nuances of Müller’s work would likely escape me, so I’ll be gleaning useful information from this volume and then reading one of her novels in English. I hope you get the chance to enjoy her in German, English, or any other language.

If you want to read her novels, this is what UW-Whitewater has:

  • Appointment: a Novel translated by Michael Hulse and Philip Boehm (2002)
    Great Minds Collection under call number: PT2673.U29234 H4813 2002
  • Hunger Angel: A Novel translated by Philip Boehm (2012)
    Main Collection under call number: PT2673.U29234 A9213 2012

Additional work by Müller is available via Universal Borrowing such as Niederungen and it’s English translation Nadirs, all of her novels that have been translated into English, and more.

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Sink Your Teeth Into Vampire Info!

Interested in researching all things vampire? Andersen Library can help!

Cover of The Physics of the BuffyverseSearch the catalog to find titles such as Encyclopedia of the vampire: The living dead in myth, legend, and popular culture (2nd-Floor Reference Collection, PN56.V3 E63 2011), The universal vampire: Origins and evolution of a legend (3rd-Floor Main Collection, GR830.V3 U55 2013), or Vampires: Myths and metaphors of enduring evil (ebook).

On the lighter side, browse for DVDs of several seasons of TV series such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2nd-floor Browsing DVD Feature Films, Buf), Angel (2nd-floor Browsing DVD Feature Films, Ang), and True Blood (2nd-floor Browsing DVD Feature Films, Tru). There are also books about Buffy, such as Reading the vampire slayer: The new, updated, unofficial guide to Buffy and Angel (ebook) and The physics of the Buffyverse (3rd-Floor Main Collection, QC75 .O84 2006). There are so many authors of vampire fiction, it’s just not possible to list them all, but you can find titles by Christine Feehan, Charlaine Harris, Laurell K. Hamilton, Stephanie Meyer, Anne Rice, Jeaniene Frost, Bram Stoker (Dracula is available as a print book, audio book, or ebook!), and many other authors. If you know these already and you need an infusion of, ahem, new blood, try reader lists posted at sites like Goodreads, e.g., Best Vampire Books from “New Authors” and Best Adult Vampire Books.

Need help? Ask a librarian!

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A B C It’s Easy as 1 2 3 Books

We seem to have more time and energy, if not more daylight, during the summer. If you’re like me, you hope to be sitting on the beach or perhaps in the shade of a tree whiling away some hours reading book after book. What better books to read than series that have been around for a while so you can sink in and read the whole series in one go, or perhaps read a few that you missed along the way. Andersen Library may not have all the books in a fiction series, but we are likely to have some, and you can use UB or your local public library to borrow the rest.

As for the series I’d recommend, I don’t know if the Jackson 5 would too, the letter books by Sue Grafton and the number books by Janet Evanovich are at the top of the list. I’ve been a serious devotee of both for some time. I started reading each series years after they began, so was able to quickly catch up to the latest volume. It gave me a good, thorough sense of the storylines and I didn’t miss the years of anticipation one bit. Both mystery series’ books are written in a conversational style and are relatively fast reads. Even though death and destruction follow the female protagonists around in each, the books are relatively light reading good for enjoying under the summer sun. Beware though: you’ll get sucked in and won’t be able to come up for air until you get to the end!

Kinsey Millhone series by Sue Grafton
NoveList says: “Hard-boiled private investigator Kinsey Millhone investigates murders and searches for missing persons, often taking on cold cases. Sassy and practical, she is an orphan and a loner, and she does not hesitate to confront vicious criminals who will stop at nothing to get away.”

You can find the full list of books by her on Sue Grafton’s Fantastic Fiction page. Here is what we have:

A is for Alibi (1982) – Use Universal Borrowing

B Is for Burglar (1985) – Use Universal Borrowing

C Is for Corpse (1986) – Use Universal Borrowing

D Is for Deadbeat (1987) – Use Universal Borrowing

E Is for Evidence (1988) – Use Universal Borrowing

F Is for Fugitive (1989) – Use Universal Borrowing

G Is for Gumshoe (1989) – Use Universal Borrowing

H Is for Homicide (1991) – Use Universal Borrowing

I Is for Innocent (1992) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 I2 1992

J Is for Judgement (1993) – Use Universal Borrowing

K Is for Killer (1994) – Use Universal Borrowing

L Is for Lawless (1995) – Use Universal Borrowing

M Is for Malice (1996) – Use Universal Borrowing

N Is for Noose (1998) – Use Universal Borrowing

O Is for Outlaw (1999) – Use Universal Borrowing

P Is for Peril (2001) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 P3 2001

Q Is For Quarry (2002) – Use Universal Borrowing

R Is for Ricochet (2004) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 R15 2004

S Is for Silence (2005) – Use Universal Borrowing

T Is for Trespass (2007) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 T15 2007

U Is for Undertow (2009) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 U3 2009

V Is For Vengeance (2011) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 V46 2011

W is for Wasted (2013) – Browsing Books Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 W17 2013

There is also a book of short stories you might want to read:
Kinsey and Me: Stories – Browsing Books Collection; Call Number: PS3557.R13 K56 2013

Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich
NoveList says: “Stephanie Plum may not be the best bounty hunter in New Jersey, but she always gets her man. With more luck than talent, her life is full of bail-jumping criminals, car chases, missing persons, and trying to find a decent guy in Jersey. This series is full of non-stop action, high-stakes suspense, and the trademark Evanovich humor.”

You can find the full list of books by her on Janet Evanovich’s Fantastic Fiction page. Here is what we have:

One for the Money (1994) – Also made into a movie – Use Universal Borrowing

Two for the Dough (1996) – Use Universal Borrowing

Three to Get Deadly (1997) – Use Universal Borrowing

Four to Score (1998) – Use Universal Borrowing

High Five (1999) – Use Universal Borrowing

Hot Six (2000) – Use Universal Borrowing

Seven Up (2001) – Use Universal Borrowing

Hard Eight (2002) – Use Universal Borrowing

To the Nines (2003) – Use Universal Borrowing

Ten Big Ones (2004) – Use Universal Borrowing

Eleven on Top (2005) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 E44 2005

Twelve Sharp (2006) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 T93 2006

Lean Mean Thirteen (2007) – Use Universal Borrowing

Fearless Fourteen (2008) – Use Universal Borrowing

Finger Lickin’ Fifteen (2009) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 F56 2009

Sizzling Sixteen (2010) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 S59 2010

Smokin’ Seventeen (2011) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 S66 2011

Explosive Eighteen (2011) – Main Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 E97 2011

Notorious Nineteen (2012) – Browsing Books Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 N68 2012

Takedown Twenty (2013) – Browsing Books Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 T36 2013

Top Secret Twenty-One (2014) – Browsing Books Collection; Call Number: PS3555.V2126 T67 2014

I hope you enjoy the rest of the summer. Oh, and don’t forget to get some outdoor activities in as well so you can soak up that vitamin D!

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New Stuff Tuesday – July 8, 2014

The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914

Sleepwalkers:
How Europe Went to War in 1914
by Christopher Clark
D511 .C54 2014
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

June 28, 2014 marked the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I. That day is also my mother’s birthday so I always remembered that Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated on that day. It was never very clear to me why this started a world war and which countries were involved. Many new books have come out to mark the centenary of the war and The Sleepwalkers is especially useful for explaining the context. The author emphasizes the “how” and not the “why.” He believes that focusing on the why leads to blaming and he wants to explain not blame. The book is well written and interesting and it helped me understand the origins of the First World War. The book includes a very clear map which makes it easier to understand the geography. This is a good starting point for anyone curious about the “Great War.”

Post written by Vicky Topp

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Mealtime Music on Thursdays

Looking for a place to enjoy lunch outside? Maybe with a little music, too? Mmmmm…like a mini-vacation in the middle of your day!

collage of images of food and music outsideOn Thursdays in July, from 11:30am-12:45pm, eat while sitting on the lawn of the Cultural Arts Center (402 W Main St, Whitewater, by the Birge Fountain) and listen to live music! Bring your own lunch, or get something from the vendor of the week. It’s the “Savory Sounds” series:

  • July 10: Music: Brothers Quinn / Food: LaPreferida
  • July 17: Music: Whiskey Doubles / Food: Black Sheep
  • July 24: Music: Looper’s Blues Duo / Food: Rocky Rococo

Also check out “Summer on the Mall” lunches by University Dining/Chartwells on July 10 and August 7, from 11am-1pm outside the north side of the campus University Center (or if it rains, in the UC Hamilton Room). Live music, art activities, prizes, socializing. Yum.

If you’re in town on Thursday nights, check out the free 2014 Concert In The Park series! Music starts at 7pm in Cravath Lakefront Park (341 S Fremont Street, Whitewater), and if you’d like to dine you can bring your own meal or order dinner baskets from the Black Sheep (call 262-458-4751 or stop into the Black Sheep to order your basket before the concert). Music dates are listed below, while on other Thursday nights there are “Family Fun Night” events instead of music.

  • July 10: The Dang Its’
  • July 31: Funky Blue Reaction
  • August 21: Piper Road Spring Band

On other days, you can always check out music recordings (or audio books or print books, if you prefer) from Andersen Library and liven up any lunch or evening! They’re all listed in the catalog, or you can browse the shelves. We’ve got all kinds of music, from Wycliffe Gordon (jazz trombonist) to opera classics. Please ask a librarian for assistance with finding materials, if desired.

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T3: Note-taking and Your Digital Life

Your Digital Life

Do you have notes for classes, papers, or lesson plans written on loose sheets of paper, typed up in Microsoft Word files on your laptop, and written down in a notebook you can’t find at the moment? Do you have important bits of information scrawled on scratch paper littering your desk, car, or room? Do you use more than one internet browser and can’t keep track of which one contains the bookmark to a vital website? Do you have a folder on your computer with images you want to use in multiple projects, but the images aren’t labeled or categorized so you never get around to starting the projects?

EvernoteMultimedia note-taking apps can help you organize and capture information in your studies, work, and daily life. These apps allow you to store information in various digital forms that you gather from your physical or online life. These apps use the concept of notebooks and notes to manage your files and information. You can set up different notebooks for your courses or projects and put almost anything into a notebook. OneNoteYou can view your notebooks and add notes on our own computer, on campus computers through the app websites, and on mobile devices. Everything is synced automatically across your computers to your account. With note-taking apps you can:

  1. Capture (almost) everything
    • Notes you type directly
    • Microsoft Word documents
    • Microsoft PowerPoint documents
    • PDFs and scanned files
    • Photos of handwritten notes or documents you take with your smartphone or other mobile device
    • Photos or screenshots
    • Audio recordings (You can record lectures with your smartphone or mobile device.)
    • Websites
  2. Organize your stuff and find it fast
    • You can separate your notes into different notebooks, but you can also tag notes with labels that you create.
    • These apps have powerful search features.
    • You can share your notebooks with other app users or email notes to anyone.

Free Apps

  • Evernote, the most popular web-based app, has the most elegant interface and best features on the free account. The free account should meet your needs—if you pay for a Premium account, you just get a few more features and more space.
  • Onenote, a Microsoft product, has a new free account option. You cannot record audio with the free account.

Can’t Decide?
Lifehacker has a post breaking down the pros and cons of each system: Lifehacker Faceoff: OneNote vs. Evernote.

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