Shakespeare @PSC

Why should anyone be interested in an author who lived over 400 years ago? Believe it or not, the works of Shakespeare continue to shape literature (such as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead) and film (such as The Lion King), even today.

Stop by the library to borrow titles featured in the library’s Shakespeare display, and be sure to check out the Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s live production of Romeo and Juliet at 11:00AM on Thursday, April 27 in the PSC auditorium! Tickets are $5 for students and are available in the Business Office.

And if you’re just looking for some fresh insults inspired by Shakespeare, you can find those online.

Books

DVDs

March Book Display: Earth and Beyond

The book display for March explores the search for life outside of Earth, as well as the strangeness of life on our planet.

NASA recently discovered seven Earth-like planets, 40 light-years away. While a long distance for us, it is, cosmically, only a hop, skip, and jump away. As our technology improves and our science advances, we continue to discover more and more planets outside our solar system. And with each new discovery, we wonder whether they could be life on those distant worlds and how we can get to those worlds. Closer to home, Curiosity, the Mars rover, is on the search for evidence of alien life on the Red Planet. How would the discovery of life outside Earth change your perspective?

However, we can stay on our blue dot to explore high strangeness and alien worlds. In our oceans is the largest creature to ever exist: the blue whale, a mammal species known for its intelligence, unique language, and development of culture. Cephalopods (squids, octopuses, and cuttlefishes) have unique, identifying personalities.  We cannot forget the oddness of all the creatures: the poisonous, egg-laying mammal, the platypus.

Take some time to read about the odd and wonderful life on our planet. Consider the possibility of alien life and our continued, scientific search for worlds outside our own. And if you desire, read about alien abductions and UFOs.


The Last Unicorn

by William DeBuys

Call QL737.U53 D434 2015

“In 1992, in a remote mountain range, a team of scientists discovered the remains of an unusual animal with beautiful long horns. It turned out to be a living species new to western science — a saola, the first large land mammal discovered in 50 years. Rare then and rarer now, no westerner had glimpsed a live saola before Pulitzer Prize finalist and nature writer William deBuys and conservation biologist William Robichaud set off to search for it in the wilds of central Laos. The team endured a punishing trek, up and down whitewater rivers and through mountainous terrain ribboned with the snare lines of armed poachers. In the tradition of Bruce Chatwin, Colin Thubron, and Peter Matthiessen, THE LAST UNICORN is deBuys’s look deep into one of the world’s most remote places. As in the pursuit of the unicorn, the journey ultimately becomes a quest for the essence of wildness in nature, and an encounter with beauty”


Beyond the Stars: Our Origins and the Search for Life in The Universe

by Paolo Saraceno

Call GQ982 .S2713 2012

“What is the origin of the universe? Are we alone in the Universe? Using clear and plain language, the author explores these two interesting scientific-philosophical themes with a broad range of studies, including astronomy, cosmology, chemistry, biology, geology and planet science.The first part discusses the origins of everything, from the Big Bang to humankind. It follows the long course of evolution — from original matter to the formation of more complex structures, from the furthest galaxies to the nearest stars, from planets to organic molecules, from the first and most elementary forms of life through to the reptiles, the dinosaurs and the advent of man.The second part traces the history of the Earth and evaluates the risks of extinction in the future as predicted by scientists. Is the Earth the only habitable planet in the Universe? This question initiates the discussion on the importance of the Earth’s position in the solar system and the significance of our geologically alive planet.The final part is dedicated to the search for extraterrestrial beings with identifiable life forms. It also describes attempts for searching, from the past to the near future.This remarkable book provides the best answers we have to the epic questions about us and our place in the universe.” Continue reading “March Book Display: Earth and Beyond”

Monthly display: memoirs

reflection

Photo credit: daniyal62; shared under the Creative Commons license

Learning about others’ lives can help us to reflect on our own. This Thanksgiving Recess (November 24-27), consider reading a memoir. The library has several on display this month (they’re located behind the cookbooks), but if you’re interested in a title that we don’t have, you can place a request for it using our interlibrary loan service. If one of the other 76 libraries within our consortium owns the title, it will be ready for you to pick up in just a few days. As always, please ask us if you have any questions about finding or borrowing materials.

Here’s a sample of the memoirs available to borrow at the PSC Library:

why-not-me         audacity-of-hope          i-am-malala         bossypants

Cookbooks in the library (and online)

apples    Image modified under the Creative Commons license. Photo credit: arbyreed

Thanksgiving is around the corner! Do you need to bring a dish to a Thanksgiving celebration? Or perhaps you’re just looking to incorporate some variety into your daily diet?

The library holds a great number of recipes for special diets—for example, gluten-free, vegan, paleo, etc.—and that represent a wide range of cuisines. Check out this month’s display in the library, or, go online to access a huge selection of recipes in the form of eBooks and magazine articles. (Current PSC students and faculty members can even access these digital materials from home!)

To find  recipes online using the PSC catalog, first select the Advanced Search option on the library homepage.

 

1_advanced-search

 

Within the Advanced Search, type in “cooking” OR “cookbooks” into the search box. Note: the default Boolean operator is “and.” By switching the operator to “or,” a larger number of results will appear. Also select the “SU Subject Terms” field from the drop-down menu next to the text boxes. Click “Search.” This will retrieve the library items that have been categorized into the “cooking” or “cookbooks” categories.

2_subject-terms

Now, you can browse through the results, or add another term to the last search box in the top if you’re looking for a specific diet, cuisine, or ingredient. Limiting the Source Types to Magazines and eBooks will exclude scholarly reports and articles related to food (these types of sources don’t typically include recipes).

3_online

As always, please contact us if you have any questions about using the Advanced Search (or if you have any other questions about using the library!).

Monthly Display: Elections

In two short weeks, we, citizens of the United States of America, will be able to exercise one of our most important rights as citizens: voting.Women's suffrage

The history of voting rights in the United States reveals the best and worst things about our nation. In the beginning of our nation, the right to vote was exclusive to white, property owning men aged 21 and over. This right slowly opened up to all citizens, regardless of race, gender, or ethnicity. A short paragraph does little justice to history of voting rights in this country. The fight for voting equality shows the great bravery of many of our citizens. All people, especially people of color and women, put their lives at risk. Many died or were gravely injured for the vote. Moreover, it also shows the great shames our nation must face. Our long and continuing history of denying people their full and equal rights as citizens.

On November 7th, please exercise your right. Do it for those who came before you and those who will come after you. For information about your local ballot, visit Ballot Ready.

 

Constitution & Citizenship Day

Constitution & Citizenship Day is a federal observance of the adoption of the United States Constitution. Introduced in 2004 by West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd, the day is set aside for the promotion of civic education on the principal document of our nation. Senator Byrd believed it was imperative that all people in the United States have a fundamental understanding of the document that guarantees our freedoms. Moreover, it is also an opportunity to reflect how our nation has struggled with expanding full and equal rights to all people. On the anniversary of the signing the Constitution, September 17, 1787, all publicly funded schools are mandated to teach about the Constitution.

The Prairie State Library is excited to host a Constitution & Citizenship Day event on Thursday, September 15th from 12:30 to 1:45. The activities will include a lecture by Professor Andrew Schott titled “‘This Process Affords a Moral Certainty’ The Election of the U.S. President” and a “Citizenship Game Show” hosted by Professor Jennifer Eick-Magan.

Need more information? Want to impress your friends or enemies during the Game Show? Bone up on your knowledge of the U.S. Constitution by using PSC Library’s Guide to Constitution & Citizenship Day.

 

References:

Krache, Donna. “Constitution Day Ushers in Mandate to Teach the Constitution.” CNN. September 16, 2005. Accessed September 02, 2016. http://www.cnn.com/2005/EDUCATION/09/16/constitution.day/.

OBAMA, BARACK. “Proclamation 9323–Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, Constitution Week, 2015.” Daily Compilation Of Presidential Documents (September 16, 2015): 1. Points of View Reference Center, EBSCOhost (accessed September 2, 2016).

Back to School: Fall 2016 Edition

Back to School BlogThe Prairie State College Library welcomes back students and faculty to another exciting school year! With classes starting up, it is important to know about the new as well as continuing services that the library offers to help them succeed and enjoy their experience at PSC.

Don’t forget to check out the books at the bottom of this page and those on display near our Library Classroom, as they can help you succeed in the new school year and in your academic career.

What is New?

The Library’s Facebook PageThe Library has a Facebook Page. Like it to get Library news, updates, books recommendations and more!

Ask-a-Librarian You can now easily get a hold of a librarian even while you are off campus using our chat box. You are now also able to Text your questions. For times when the Library is closed, try out our FAQs page that provides answers to commonly asked questions as well as a easy to use email form. For more information read our instruction guide.

Try an Ebook Collection for Fun: Entertain yourself with the cloudLibrary™ App which features our popular fiction and non-fiction titles. You can read up on using cloudLibrary™ App using our instruction guide.

Try an Ebook Collection for Research: You can also use the Library’s academic ebook collection, from EBSCO, to help with your research and education. In this collection you can read, notate and download any of our 100,000+ books on academic topics.  You can read up on using the EBSCO Academic Ebook Collection by using our instruction guide.

The Library Chalkboard — Come check out the Library’s Blackboard discussion board located near the entrance of the library. Each week, the library posts one thought provoking question that you can respond to.

Check out the New Books SectionThe library now has a New Books Section that is located in front of the “Study Rooms.” This section includes the latest books that the library has received.

The Library has a New Catalog: The Prairie State College Library, along with over 70 local libraries, use what is called the SWAN Catalog, which has recently gotten a new look and interface. Continue reading to find out more on using this new catalog to see what we have or to order books and movies from our partner libraries.

Things to Remember…

Scanning, Faxing, and Printing is Available — Scanning documents is 5 cents per page. Faxing is $1 per page. Printing is 10 cents. In addition, printing in Color is available with the new Color Printer at the cost of 50 cents per page.

Study Rooms are Available — The library offers three study rooms that can be used for studying and preparing presentations.

Services for Faculty Members are Available — Be sure to visit our Instruction Services webpage to learn how to schedule a library instruction session for your classes, learn tips about how you can help us help your students, as well as other services you can take advantage of.

We Are Always Here to Help — Check out our Ask A Librarian Page for more information on how the library can help you out!

Books that can help you succeed this school year and in your academic career…

Graphic Novel Display: Image Comics

imagecomics
Image Comics creators (clockwise from top left): Erik Larson, Rob Leifeld, Todd McFarlane, Mac Silvestri, Jim Valentinio, Jim Lee, Whilce Portacio

For most of comic book’s history the two major companies, DC Comics and Marvel, have not always been very kind to their creators. In fact, the creators of arguably the most important superhero, Superman, saw very little in residuals from DC Comics. In the 90s, during comic books second major boom, companies would hire creators to work on known creations, but would give them very little in regards to creative process and even less when it came to residuals and royalties. Even in instances where the creator, developed their own superhero for the company (e.g. Deadpool, who was created by Rob Leifeld in the 1990s for Marvel), the company would retain all of the rights to the creator.

In the Winter of 1991-92, seven Marvel artists (pictured above), who were disillusioned with this corporate model, decided they had enough, and started their own company with a new creator-friendly model comics. This company was called Image Comics. You can watch rise of the company in the new documentary, The Image Revolution (AV PN 6725.I434 2016), or read about in the EW feature The Coolest Comic-Book Company on Earth by Clark Collis.

What was interesting about this new company is that the only thing that image would own would be the the logo of their company. Everything else would belong to the creators (including most of the costs). It was a new way of doing business, that the major publishers hated, but eventually would have to embrace (if only slightly). And to this day, Image Comics is the main competition to the Big Two, and still continues to shape public consumption of comic books, with titles like The Walking Dead, Spawn, and Saga. You can find all of the Image titles we have on display this month of the Creator-Owned comic book display.

Sustainability Month @ PSC Library

“We have much to learn by studying nature and taking the time to tease out its secrets.”

– David Suzuki

On Friday, April 22nd, we will celebrate the 46th Earth Day. Earth Day, which began in 1970, was created to draw attention to environmental issues, such as agricultural suitability, climate change, ecological preservation, biodiversity, and green energy. Since the first event, Earth Day has stretch across the globe, bringing together over a billion people. Prairie State College has taken the month of April to focus on sustainability, hosting a number of events on campus.

This Earth Day will be a proud moment for the global community as 120 nations, including the U.S. and China, will sign the Paris Climate Agreementa promise to decrease greenhouse gas admissions and a commitment to the reversal of global climate change.

The Prairie State Library has several titles on sustainability and issues relating to climate change. Check out what you can study and discover nature’s secrets:

Blessed Unrest The Big Ratchet Age of Sustainable Development How to Think Seriously About the Planet

Careers in green technology and sustainable development are rapidly growing. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics has projected a 21% growth from 2010 to 2020. This job growth cuts across several labor fields with opportunities for every type of student. Explore the multitude of options and start planning for your future!

Careers in Focus: Environment Green Careers Green Collar Jobs Sustainable Communities

Sources:

Davenport, Coral. “Nations Approve Landmark Climate Accord in Paris.” The New York Times. December 12, 2015. Accessed April 21, 2016. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/world/europe/climate-change-accord-paris.html.

Earth Day Network. “Our Mission.” Earth Day Network. Accessed April 21, 2016. http://www.earthday.org/

Kirk, Karin and Monica Bruckner. “The Workforce for a Sustainable Future.” InTeGrate. Accessed April 21, 2016. http://serc.carleton.edu/integrate/programs/workforceneeds/workforce_overview.html

Black History Month @ PSC Library

On February 10th, 1976, President Gerald Ford, in his statement on the creation of Black History Month, wrote that as a nation we should “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” However, the founding of Black History Month dates back further than President Ford’s “Message” and has a history before the official recognition by the United States government. This Month’s history first began in 1915 and is closely tied with Chicago.

Dr. Carter G. Woodson, an alumnus of the University of Chicago, met with four colleagues at the Wabash YMCA in Chicago to form the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). Through ASNLH and Journal of Negro Life, Dr. Woodson published the scholarly works of Black researchers and intellectuals. In 1925, he used the publishing and organizing power of ASNLH to declare the first Negro History Week in February of 1926.

Starting in the 1940s, Negro History Week began to shift to Black History Month. At his House of Knowledge in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood, Frederick H. Hammurabi, a community activist, started celebrating Black History Month and emphasized the scholarly pursuit of “African-American history and historic links between African-Americans and African culture and traditions” Hammurabi, who, inspired by his own journey to discover his African roots, helped individuals in Bronzeville discover their own African roots and spread the knowledge of African, African-American, and Afro-Caribbean history and culture.

With this history, the monthly book display, in part, seeks to explore the history of the Black community and culture in Chicagoland. It is a rich and diverse history. It is a history of labor and the industrialization of the United States. It is a history of art and literature and the Black Renaissance. It is also the history of civil rights and the continued fight for social, economic, and political equality. The history includes musicians, athletes, and a President.

Chicago's South Side Bridges of Memory I've got to make my livin' Black Chicago Renaissance

In addition to the glance on material relating to Chicago, this month’s display also examines African history. The history of the continent is deeply rich and complex. It includes the culture, achievements, and life of many distinct and disparate people and civilizations. It spans millennia; it is the cradle of humankind, the birthplace of art and language, home to great and powerful empires, and origins of modern legal and justice systems.

Africa: A Biography of the Continent African History The Washing Of The Spears A History of West Africa

Sources:

DePaul Digication. “House of Knowledge: Knowledge is Power.” CGCT Bronzeville Community Tour. Accessed February 4, 2016. https://depaul.digication.com/cgct_bronzeville_community_tour/House_of_Knowledge

Ford, Gerald R. “Message on the Observance of Black History Month.” Speech. February 10, 1976. Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum. https://www.fordlibrarymuseum.gov/library/speeches/760074.htm

Scott, Daryl Michael. “Origins of Black History Month.” Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Accessed February 4, 2016. https://asalh100.org/origins-of-black-history-month/