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September 2006

Every day is Museum Day at Wheelock

Don’t forget – this week is Banned Books Week. You can vote for your favorite banned book at the ALA website.

Saturday, September 30 is also Museum Day. Museum Day is inspired by the Smithsonian Institution’s year-round free admission policy. To participate, download the Museum Day Card, pick a location, and go! Participating institutions in Massachusetts include Historic New England, Plimoth Plantation, the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Many more locations in Massachusetts and around the country are listed on the Museum Day website.

Wheelock College faculty, staff, students, and alumni can visit the MFA year round using Wheelock College Museum Passes, available at the Library. We also offer passes to the Boston Children’s Museum, the Franklin Park Zoo / Stone Zoo, the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum, and the Peabody Essex Museum. The Library also has coupons for admission to the Museum of Science and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Some restrictions apply – stop by the circulation desk to pick up a brochure or passes.

Find articles fast

Years ago, searching for articles involved wading through piles of heavy print indexes and headaches from squinting at small type. Electronic database searching makes more information available faster and easier, but searching is still not ideal – while many resources offer full articles online, many only offer abstracts or citations, so the search for full text results in twenty seven open browser windows and possible repetitive stress injury.

Good news – we are now able to provide a direct link to many full text articles from citations with our new link resolver (known as TDNet OpenURL Resolver, or TOUR). If you see this button within your database search results:

click to access a menu of options. TOUR will take you to a database containing your full text article, and sometimes it will even link you to the article itself. If your article is not available online, check our catalog to see if we have it in print, try InterLibrary Loan, or ask a librarian for help.

Celebrate your freedom to read

2006 BBW; Read Banned Books: They're Your Ticket to FreedomNext week (September 23 – 30) is the 25th anniversary of ALA ‘Banned Book Week’. Juvenile literature is among the most challenged – according to the ALA, 71% of the challenged materials between 1990 and 2000 were to items in schools or school libraries, and 60% of the challengers were parents.

Here is the American Library Association’s list of Top Ten Challenged Books of 2005 with accompanying reasons for being challenged – items in our collection are bolded:

  • “It’s Perfectly Normal” by Robie H. Harris – for homosexuality, nudity, sex education, religious viewpoint, abortion and being unsuited to age group;
  • “Forever” by Judy Blume for sexual content and offensive language;
  • The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger for sexual content, offensive language and being unsuited to age group;
  • The Chocolate War” by Robert Cormier for sexual content and offensive language;
  • “Whale Talk” by Chris Crutcher for racism and offensive language;
  • “Detour for Emmy” by Marilyn Reynolds for sexual content;
  • “What My Mother Doesn’t Know” by Sonya Sones for sexual content and being unsuited to age group;
  • the Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey for anti-family content, being unsuited to age group and violence;
  • Crazy Lady!” by Jane Leslie Conly for offensive language; and
  • It’s So Amazing! A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families” by Robie H. Harris for sex education and sexual content.

Google is also listing often-challenged books – check the FLO Catalog for availability of a hold-it-in-your-hands version.

Is there anything to read here?

Well of course there’s something to read — we have thousands and thousands of books.

But what you mean when you ask us this question is, “Is there anything fun to read here? You know, reading for pleasure and not for class?”

We don’t have a special section devoted to novels like you might find at your local public library, so it’s harder to find something if you don’t have a particular author or title in mind. But because we want you to love reading, we’ve put together this list of ways for you to get “fun” books:

Browse the shelves on floor 4M. You never know what title might jump off the shelf at you. A few options include ‘Tis, the second installment of Frank McCourt’s memoirs; the “speculative fiction” of Margaret Atwood, including Lady Oracle, Life After Man, Cat’s Eye and The Handmaid’s Tale; and a variety of the Oprah books, such as The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver; Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat; A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest Gaines; and the very first Oprah selection, The Deep End of the Ocean by Jacquelyn Mitchard.

We also have a free Book Exchange on the Lower Level. The motto is, “Take a book, leave a book, read for fun!” All patrons are encouraged to choose something from the cart, or leave something behind that others might enjoy.

Still not finding anything “fun” to read? You have access to hundreds of thousands of books through Fenway Libraries Online and the Fenway Library Consortium. Visit these libraries in person (the Simmons College library in particular has a sizeable “Diversions Collection”) or place an Interlibrary Loan request.

The Massachusetts Virtual Catalog allows you to search the catalogs of – and request items from — more than 300 libraries across the state. That’s a lot of books!

Finally, we encourage you to visit the Boston Public Library Boston Public Library in Copley Square. A library card provides access not only to print books, but electronic and downloadable audio books as well. Plus, the McKim Building (the older part of the library) has many beautiful artistic and architectural details to see.

The best part? All of this – that’s right, everything mentioned above – is free.

New to Wheelock?

Here are some things to know when using the library:

  • Restrooms (indelicately labeled ‘Toilet’) are located on LL, 1M, 2M, 3M, 4, and 4M.
  • The library has 9 levels but only 4 numbers because of our many mezzanines – it confuses all of us. Fortunately, the stairwells are labeled so you can find what you need.
  • The Reference Librarian wants you to ask her/him questions
  • If we don’t have it, we can get it! Let us know what books, articles, and resources you need.
  • We don’t charge fines but appreciate timely return of materials. Other libraries in our consortium do charge fines, so be aware of lending policies when using InterLibrary Loan.
  • We have laptops for you to borrow (library use only) – ask at the circulation desk.

Visit our website for more information or stop by, say hello, and pick up a copy of our Library Guide on floors 1, 1M and 2. It has a listing of what’s on each floor, as well as information on our services and collections, all in convenient booklet form!