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January 2016

Screen capture of research guide

Anti-racism Resources for White Allies

During fall semester, one of the things that faculty and staff members heard from students was that there is a need and desire for materials that would support individual learning about how to be a white anti-racist ally. Jenne Powers, Assistant Professor of Humanities and Writing, initiated a conversation with Roz and me about this, and we decided that a great place to link to materials on this topic would be a library research guide. Writing Center Director Gillian Devereux also contributed good ideas to this effort. We worked on it in November and December, and this January, we were ready to unveil our resource guide, “Anti-racism resources for white allies.”

Screen capture of research guideWe hope it provides some places to get started! Like we say on the guide, it’s a work in progress, and we invite the participation of the Wheelock community.  Do you want to suggest a resource?  Email us.  Have feedback to share?  Sing it out.  Notice a broken link?  Let us know.

 


Heeding the Call to Service and Higher Education

The Library’s very own Eric Clark was recently featured in a video on the Wheelock College website. Eric has been one of our student workers since the fall of 2015. In the video, Eric talks about his passion for helping others and how it led him to return to school and pursue a degree in Social Work. He brings to work with him every day the same enthusiasm and commitment he applies to his studies.

Check out the video below, or find it here on the college’s website.

We love that the video features so many scenes of Eric working and studying in the library! He is an absolute pleasure to work with and always jumps at an opportunity to help both students and coworkers. We want to congratulate Eric on being recognized by the college as a student who is truly inspiring a world of good, and we can’t wait to see where the rest of his journey takes him.

 


The Boy Who Lived On

Harry Potter has seen its fair share of new editions and re-releases, but none have been as highly anticipated as the October 6th release of the first fully illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The Wheelock College Library is now the proud owner of this new book, so here is a bit of information on the artist behind the magic and how he brought the Wizarding World to life.

Artist Jim Kay has been working as a full time illustrator for seven years, and rose to international acclaim after he won the Kate Greenaway Medal for his illustrations in A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. Now he has accepted the challenge of illustrating the entire Potter series, with one book planned to be released each year.

With hundreds of cover illustrations worldwide and seven EIGHT wildly successful movie adaptions, one might worry that Jim’s work would be too highly influenced by the preexisting visualizations of Potter’s world. I’m happy to say that this is not the case. His illustrations provide a fresh and inventive new perspective on the places and characters that we have come to know so well.

That’s not to say they were all pulled directly from his mind’s eye. Not only do the novels provide lavishly detailed imagery to work from, but Jim says he pulls images from everyday life and stores them to use when the right illustration comes along. His inspiration for Harry’s character came from a boy he met on the London underground. Hagrid was inspired by an old man wearing a metal band t-shirt.

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It’s hard enough to believe that one person can tackle so daunting a task as to illustrate an entire Harry Potter book in a year, but it seems nearly impossible when you learn that Kay actually builds entire sets for his illustrations in miniature. He created a to-scale Hogwarts out of cardboard and a figurine of Hagrid that is giant in proportion to toy soldiers that he staged as students. In the video below, you can see some of these models and the way in which Jim uses them to get every detail of an illustration to be perfect. You’ll also get a sneak peek at one of the books all-time favorite characters, who we won’t see fully imagined until the release of Chamber of Secrets next year.

My takeaway is that no matter how many times a work has been revisited, it can always be given a fresh new perspective. If you feel that you lost your mind’s own version of Hermione somewhere around the fourth movie (while Emma Watson’s portrayal of the character was absolutely spot on, they just never quite managed to mess up that hair!) then have a look at Jim’s re-imagining of the bossy but brilliant 11 year old conjuring her signature blue flame.

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I clearly think Jim’s illustrations are a huge success, but you don’t have to take my word for it. Just stop by the Wheelock College Library to see this beautiful new edition firsthand. It is currently located on the library’s New Books Display, right inside the front doors.