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We’re kicking off May with a short list of magical reads to celebrate the start of summer.
For more exciting reads, check out our Overdrive, New and Noteworthy, and Current Literature collections.

Enchantée by Gita Trelease.

A compellingly beautiful tale of magic, intrigue and deception, set against the backdrop of eighteenth-century Paris on the cusp of revolution.

Paris is a labyrinth of twisted streets filled with beggars and thieves, revolutionaries and magicians. Camille Durbonne is one of them. She wishes she weren’t…

When smallpox kills her parents, Camille must find a way to provide for her younger sister while managing her volatile brother. Relying on magic, Camille painstakingly transforms scraps of metal into money to buy food and medicine they need. But when the coins won’t hold their shape and her brother disappears with the family’s savings, Camille pursues a richer, more dangerous mark: the glittering court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

Using dark magic forbidden by her mother, Camille transforms herself into a baroness and is swept up into life at the Palace of Versailles, where aristocrats both fear and hunger for magic. As she struggles to reconcile her resentment of the rich with the allure of glamour and excess, Camille meets a handsome young inventor, and begins to believe that love and liberty may both be possible.

But magic has its costs, and soon Camille loses control of her secrets. And when revolution erupts, Camille must choose – love or loyalty, democracy or aristocracy, reality or magic – before Paris burns.

For similar books, check out Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves, Caraval by Stephanie Garber, Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton, An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson, and Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian.

City of Crows by Chris Womersley.

Set in seventeenth-century France – a country in the thrall of dark magic, its social fabric weakened by years of plague – Chris Womersley’s City of Crows is a richly imagined and engrossing tour de force. Inspired by real-life events, it tells the story of Charlotte Picot, a young woman from the country forced to venture to the fearsome city of Paris in search of her only remaining son, Nicolas. Fate (or coincidence) places the quick-witted charlatan Adam Lesage in her path. Lesage is newly released from the prison galleys and on the hunt for treasure, but, believing him to be a spirit she has summoned from the underworld, Charlotte enlists his help in finding her child.

Charlotte and Lesage – comically ill-matched but nevertheless essential to one another – journey to Paris, then known as the City of Crows: Charlotte in search of Nicolas, and Lesage seeking a fresh start.

Dazzlingly told, with humor and flair, City of Crows is a novel for readers who like their fiction atmospheric, adventurous, spine-tingling, and beautifully written. Pre-revolutionary France, with all its ribaldry, superstition, and intrigue is mesmerizing, and Charlotte Picot’s story – the story of a mother in search of her lost son – holds universal appeal.

Chris Womersley has also written The Low Road, Bereft, and Cairo. A collection of his short stories, A Lovely and Terrible Thing will be released in Australia this month.

Half-Witch by John Schoffstall.

In the world in which Lizbet Lenz lives, the sun still goes around the earth, God speaks directly to his worshippers, goblins haunt every cellar, and witches lurk in the forests. Disaster strikes when Lizbet’s father Gerhard, a charming scoundrel, is thrown into a dungeon by the tyrant Hengest Wolftrow. To free him, Lizbet must cross the Montagnes du Monde, globe-girdling mountains that reach to the sky, a journey no one has ever survived, and retrieve a mysterious book.Lizbet is desperate, and the only one who can help her is the unpleasant and sarcastic witch girl Strix. As the two girls journey through the mountains and into the lands of wonder beyond, on the run from goblins, powerful witches, and human criminals, Lizbet discovers, to her horror, that Strix’s magic is turning Lizbet into a witch, too. Meanwhile, a revolution in Heaven is brewing.

Half-Witch was named one of NPR’s Best Books of 2018. Check out NPR’s Sci Fi, Fantasy, and Speculative Fiction and Young Adult lists.

Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett.

In a city that runs on industrialized magic, a secret war will be fought to overwrite reality itself – the first in a dazzling new series from City of Stairs author Robert Jackson Bennett.

Sancia Grado is a thief, and a damn good one. And her latest target, a heavily guarded warehouse on Tevanne’s docks, is nothing her unique abilities can’t handle.

But unbeknownst to her, Sancia’s been sent to steal an artifact of unimaginable power, an object that could revolutionize the magical technology known as scriving. The Merchant Houses who control this magic – the art of using coded commands to imbue everyday objects with sentience – have already used it to transform Tevanne into a vast, remorseless capitalist machine. But if they can unlock the artifact’s secrets, they will rewrite the world itself to suit their aims.

Now someone in those Houses wants Sancia dead, and the artifact for themselves. And in the city of Tevanne, there’s nobody with the power to stop them.

To have a chance at surviving–and at stopping the deadly transformation that’s under way–Sancia will have to marshal unlikely allies, learn to harness the artifact’s power for herself, and undergo her own transformation, one that will turn her into something she could never have imagined.

One of my favorite authors, Tamora Pierce, remarks that Foundryside has “Complex characters, magic that is tech and vice versa, a world bound by warring trade dynasties: Bennett will leave you in awe once you remember to breathe!”

The Red Threads of Fortune by JY Yang.

Fallen prophet, master of the elements, and daughter of the supreme Protector, Sanao Mokoya has abandoned the life that once bound her. Once her visions shaped the lives of citizens across the land, but no matter what tragedy Mokoya foresaw, she could never reshape the future. Broken by the loss of her young daughter, she now hunts deadly, sky-obscuring naga in the harsh outer reaches of the kingdom with packs of dinosaurs at her side, far from everything she used to love.

On the trail of a massive naga that threatens the rebellious mining city of Bataanar, Mokoya meets the mysterious and alluring Rider. But all is not as it seems: the beast they both hunt harbors a secret that could ignite war throughout the Protectorate. As she is drawn into a conspiracy of magic and betrayal, Mokoya must come to terms with her extraordinary and dangerous gifts, or risk losing the little she has left to hold dear.

The Red Threads of Fortune is one of a pair of standalone introductions to JY Yang’s Tensorate Series, which Kate Elliott calls “effortlessly fascinating.” We have its twin novella, The Black Tides of Heaven.

The post What to Read this Month: May 2019 appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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This month’s Collection Spotlight in Perkins Library explores foodways of the southeastern United States. People come to Duke from all over the world, and while they’re here, they will undoubtedly eat. We invite you to reflect on the cultural importance of food in this region, whether you’re here for life or just a little while.

We’re featuring books that explore the intersections of food with race and class and gender. We’ve tried to represent some of the regional diversity in southern food, from Appalachia to the Piedmont, the Low Country to the Gulf Coast, and some of the diverse cultures that contribute to southern food today. We’re thinking about politics and history and personal stories. And we hope there’s something for everyone, whether you’re interested in food studies theory and methods, a recipe for your evening meal, or even poetry.

Of course, some of the hottest titles are perpetually checked out, and for those you’re invited to submit an interlibrary request (tip: you can just use the green “Request” button when you search for a book and it will populate the form). Of course, we also have many eBooks you won’t see on display, so don’t forget to check the catalog.

Come take a peek next to the Perkins Library Service Desk, though we can’t promise you won’t leave hungry.

The post May 2019 Collection Spotlight: Southern Food appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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It’s a familiar feeling: you only need one more scholarly source for your paper due at 8:30 the next morning. It may also just so happen to be 2:30 am, and at a certain point, there’s only so much caffeine in the world. However, by knowing how to utilize the number of databases available at Duke, one can seek relief. Even better, utilizing databases will grant you access to full-text scholarly articles, popular sources, and a multitude of additional resources (all without having to leave your dorm room and trek across campus). In this blog series, procrastinators and planners alike will find recommendations, tips, and tricks on how to navigate the amazing range of databases Duke Libraries have to offer- without wanting to tear your hair out.

There are two primary categories of databases you will find in academic libraries: general databases and specialized databases. If you are just beginning to explore your research topic, a general database, such as Academic Search Complete or JSTOR, can help guide your initial research. These databases are multidisciplinary and draw from a wide range of journals. However, once you have started the research process, you may find that general databases no longer offer the content you need. For example, April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month; if you had a research assignment related to the history of sexual assault in the United States, you may want to first use a general database such as Academic Search Complete to help guide your research before delving into specialized databases. However, after you have discovered some possibly relevant sources that could help guide your keyword search, you may then want to pursue sources in specialized databases- for this example, specialized databases in History or Women’s & Sexuality Studies.

On Duke Libraries Research Database guide, the most popular general databases are directly linked at the top of the guide (https://guides.library.duke.edu/az.php). One of those, and indeed one of the most popular general databases in academic libraries, is Academic Search Complete. Academic Search Complete is hosted by EBSCO. Note that EBSCO itself is not a database; rather, EBSCO hosts a multitude of databases, including both general and specialized varieties, and across a variety of disciplines. As discussed above, Academic Search Complete would be an ideal database with which to begin the research process for many of your classes. Through Duke Libraries’ subscription to Academic Search Complete, you can access full-text scholarly articles, popular sources, as well as The New York Times and Wall Street Journal.

There are a variety of factors you may consider when choosing a database- among them should be exactly what type of source you are looking for. If a database only offers abstracts, but you require a full-text journal article as a source, it would not be an appropriate database option. Finding the right database for your research is not necessarily always a seamless process; however, Duke Libraries have many resources available in order to help you conduct your research and access the best articles and journals.

Quick tip: Know what citation style your professor wants/requires before beginning your research. Many databases will provide formatted citations based on the style needed (MLA, APA, etc), While you should double-check the citation provided in order to ensure it is formatted correctly, using that citation as a foundation should save you some time.

Additional resources:

  • Be sure to check out Duke Libraries’ Research Guides. These guides, created by Duke University librarians, offer specialized tips centered around your area of research.
  • As always, if you are ever stumped by navigating databases or wondering where to go next in your research, Duke’s librarians are here to help. Here is a quick link to get help via chat, email, or phone: https://library.duke.edu/research/ask

The post Database Tips and Tricks appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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The Art of Writing / The Writer’s Art Collection Spotlight on Letters Dear Duke,

When was the last time you wrote a letter or received a card in a real mailbox?
Before the Digital Age – and there was such a time – people wrote letters on paper and sent cards to each other. The latest Lilly Collection Spotlight shines on the disappearing art of letter writing, featuring a selection of books and films in which letters or ongoing correspondence play an integral role. Authors include literary and political figures such as Epicurus, Jane Austen, Dr. Martin Luther King, and Samuel Beckett.

Films about letter writing

The role letter writing plays in film, whether just as a plot device or as narration and explication helped us choose a few films from our collections. Relationships built through intimate correspondence, letters never received, mis-delivered or rediscovered frame many film narratives.  Steal a Pencil for Me, Mary and Max, Letters to Juliet and P.S. I Love You are among the films featured.

Accompanying our Collection Spotlight are two exhibit cases featuring artists’ correspondence. Displayed in the lobby case are volumes of Vincent van Gogh’s letters. He was a prolific letter writer whose writings provide insight into his work, his art, and his struggles.  Van Gogh often adorned his letters with drawings and sketches. The exhibit case in the foyer highlights  letters written by other artists including Georgia O’Keeffe, Albert Eisenstadt, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.

Duke Class of 2019 Notes to Duke 2022

p.s. 

In addition to the Collection Spotlight, browse the nearby interactive exhibit of handwritten notes from Duke Seniors, Class of 2019, to the First-Year members of Duke’s Class of 2022.

Feel free to pull out the notes from the board and read them. There is a bit of advice, personal observations, and even a little bit of wisdom on display!

The post Lilly Collection Spotlight: Dear Duke appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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The Locus collection includes some 16,000 rare and noteworthy monuments of science fiction and fantasy, many in their original dust jackets.

The David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Duke University has acquired the archives of the Locus Science Fiction Foundation, publisher of Locus, the preeminent trade magazine for the science fiction and fantasy publishing field.

The massive collection—which arrived in almost a thousand boxes—includes first editions of numerous landmarks of science fiction and fantasy, along with correspondence from some of the genre’s best-known practitioners, including Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Ursula K. Le Guin, Harlan Ellison, Octavia E. Butler, William Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon), Dean Koontz, Robert A. Heinlein, and hundreds more.

Locus started out in 1968 as a one-sheet science fiction and fantasy fanzine. Since then, it has evolved into the most trusted news magazine in science fiction and fantasy publishing, with in-depth reviews, author interviews, forthcoming book announcements, convention coverage, and comprehensive listings of all science fiction books published in English. It also administers the prestigious annual Locus Awards, first presented in 1971, which recognize excellence in science fiction and fantasy.

Over the course of five decades in print, the magazine’s editors and staff have collected and saved correspondence, clippings, and books by and about science fiction, fantasy, and horror writers. What emerges from this trove of material is a tapestry of a diverse and thriving community of writers, publishers, and editors, all working to create new and modern genres of speculative literature.

This rare advanced reader’s copy of the first edition of Game of Thrones has a distinctly different look and feel from the popular HBO series.

Of the magazine’s original three co-founders—Charles N. Brown, Ed Meskys, and Dave Vanderwerf—only Brown remained after the magazine’s first year. He would continue to edit the publication until his death in 2009, earning the magazine some thirty Hugo Awards in the process and becoming a colorful and influential figure in the publishing world. A tireless advocate for speculative fiction, Brown was also a voluminous correspondent and friend to many of the writers featured in the magazine. Many of them wrote to him over the years to share personal and professional news, or to quibble about inaccuracies and suggest corrections. The letters are often friendly, personal, humorous, and occasionally sassy.

Reacting to a recent issue of Locus that featured one of her short stories, the science fiction writer Octavia E. Butler wrote, “I am Octavia E. Butler in all my stories, novels, and letters. How is it that I’ve lost my E in three places in Locus #292? Three places! You owe me three E’s. That’s a scream, isn’t it?”

One also finds frequent remembrances and retrospectives of departed members of the Locus community, such as Ursula K. Le Guin’s poignant reflections on the passing of Philip K. Dick. After Brown’s own death, the magazine continued publication under the auspices of the Locus Science Fiction Foundation, a registered nonprofit. The magazine launched a digital edition in January 2011 and has published both in print and online ever since.

In addition to the correspondence, story drafts, and other manuscript material, the collection includes some 16,000 rare and noteworthy monuments of science fiction and fantasy from Brown’s extensive personal library, such as first editions of Isaac Asimov’s I, Robot, Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles, Robert E. Howard’s Conan the Barbarian, J. R. R. Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, Frank Herbert’s Dune, and hundreds more.

“Historical literary treasures abound in the Locus collection, from full runs of the pulps to vintage first editions to contemporary works,” said Liza Groen Trombi, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Locus Magazine. “And its preservation is deeply important. It is the product of decades of collecting and curating, starting in the 1940s, the Golden Age of science fiction, when Locus’s founding publisher Charles N. Brown was an avid reader with a deep love of genre, through his time working within the science fiction field, and up to the present day under the current Locus staff. Housing those core works in an institution where they’ll be both accessible to scholars and researchers at the same time as they are carefully preserved is a goal that I and the Locus Science Fiction Foundation board of directors had long had. I am very happy to see them in the dedicated care of the curators and librarians at Duke.”

In its new home in the Rubenstein Library, the Locus collection complements existing collection strengths in the areas of science fiction and popular literature, including the Glenn R. Negley Collection of Utopian Literature, and the Edwin and Terry Murray Collection of Pulp Culture.

“The opportunity to acquire the Locus Foundation library is a tremendous one for Duke,” said Sara Seten Berghausen, Associate Curator of Collections in the Rubenstein Library. “Because it’s a carefully curated collection of the most important and influential works of science fiction of the last several decades—most in their original dust jackets, with fantastic artwork—it complements perfectly our existing collection of utopian literature from the early modern period through the mid-twentieth century.”

Locus started out as a one-sheet science fiction and fantasy fanzine and grew into the most trusted news magazine in science fiction and fantasy publishing.

Berghausen notes that Brown and Locus created not only this collection, but a community of writers, and those relationships are documented throughout the archival collection as well. “The research and teaching possibilities are almost unlimited,” she said. “From political theory to history, art, anthropology and gender studies, there are materials in the collection that could enrich the study of so many topics.”

The collection is already being used in courses at Duke. This semester, English professor Michael D’Alessandro brought his class on utopias and dystopias in American literature to the Rubenstein Library to examine some of the Locus materials first-hand.

“It’s a curious strength Duke has that I didn’t expect,” said D’Alessandro. “I taught this course previously at Harvard, and even the archives there didn’t have anything like this collection, which adds a whole new breadth and depth to the class.”

The post Locus Collection Tracks the Stars and Universe of Sci-Fi appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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Victoria Nneji is a Ph.D. student in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science.

Guest post by Sarah Park, Librarian for Engineering and Computer Science, and Ciara Healy, Librarian for Psychology & Neuroscience, Mathematics, and Physics.

This spring, the Duke Libraries’ Natural Science and Engineering Group worked with the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering to invite Ruth Wolfish to give a presentation for Duke students. Wolfish is a trainer from IEEE, the world’s largest professional association in Electrical Engineering, Electronics, and Computer Engineering. Her presentation was titled, “How to Write a Technical Paper for Publication with IEEE.” The event aimed to answer questions such as:

  • How to select an appropriate IEEE periodical or conference, organize your manuscript, and work through peer review
  • How to structure quality work to improve their chances of being accepted
  • How to avoid common mistakes and ethical lapse that will prevent your manuscript from being accepted

The information was eye-opening for many of the students in attendance. Ms. Wolfish offered tips on how to scope a research paper submission, as well as emphasizing how to demonstrate “significant difference” between posters, conference papers, and journal articles. Students and faculty engaged in lively discussions and shared their own research publishing experiences.

Following the events, we visited workshop attendee Victoria Nneji, a Ph.D. student in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science. Victoria is a Durham native and was a member of the Duke Libraries Graduate Student Advisory Board. She graduated from the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics in Durham and finished her undergraduate work at Columbia University in New York City before earning her masters degrees and joining Duke’s Ph.D. program. During our tour of the Duke Robotics Lab, Victoria talked about her life-long love of libraries. Libraries have also been instrumental to her research accomplishments.

Speaking of her own publishing experience, Victoria explained that her first manuscript to an IEEE journal took over a year from the submission to acceptance. Victoria emphasizes the need for reaching out and proactively communicating with the journal and incorporating reviewer comments.

We asked if she had advice for incoming engineering graduate students, and she did. Here’s what Victoria advised: work with a team to publish; connect with your research advisor, a postdoc or a professor and learn to collaborate by writing drafts; and receive feedback and take ownership of your work. Given that faculty and postdocs are often busy and have little time for carrying the paper forward, students should expect to take the initiative, even following up with your contact at the journal.

In addition, Victoria suggests:

  • Learn how to receive feedback (maybe come back to it in a day or two) and integrate the reviewer’s comments to improve revisions.
  • Communicate in a way that is accessible to those who are not as close to your research as you are — this grows your potential audience of people from different fields around the world.
  • Publish early and often — this gives you a sense of how your research fits into the broader, ever-developing science community. It also helps others develop their research.

Victoria successfully defended her dissertation and is graduating this May. She will stay connected to Duke Libraries as an alum and is looking forward to the Durham Public Library’s downtown branch, where she began volunteering in 2002, reopening in the summer of 2020.

The post Publishing Tips for New Engineering Students appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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Project Vox, a collaboration between Duke University Libraries and the Department of Philosophy, recently announced the publication of the first English translation of Émilie Du Châtelet’s Essai sur l’Optique, or “essay on optics.” Duke doctoral student Bryce Gessell played a pivotal role in making this translation—and the transcription that preceded it—publicly available and accessible to scholars, instructors, and students worldwide. You can read more about Bryce’s work on the translation on the Duke Graduate School’s website.

Excerpts of Emilie du Châtelet’s handwritten “Essai sur l’Optique” that were used to construct the translation. (Images courtesy of Project Vox)

Scholars have known about Du Châtelet’s Essai sur l’Optique for many years, but until recently the text has been unavailable because all copies were thought to be lost. In 1947 Ira O. Wade published the first known edition of the Essai’s fourth chapter, which was held among Voltaire’s papers in Russia. Sixty years later, Fritz Nagel, Director of the Basel Research Center of the Bernoulli Edition, discovered the first complete copy of the Essai in the Bernoulli archives in Basel. Two other complete copies, which had previously gone unnoticed, were then discovered among Du Châtelet’s surviving manuscript material.

Working with Nagel and with Duke Philosophy professor Andrew Janiak, Gessell helped produce and publish a transcription of du Châtelet’s Essai on Project Vox in 2017. The translation, more accessible to undergraduate philosophy students, helps the next generation of scholars recognize and follow the development of Châtelet’s ideas about natural philosophy.

Project Vox seeks to transform the discipline of philosophy by making the lives, works, and ideas of early modern women philosophers available for research and classroom use. Since its inception in 2014, this open educational resource has been produced by a cross-professional, cross-disciplinary, and cross-institutional team made up mostly of students, with review and advisement from philosophers worldwide. Learn more about how Duke University Libraries increase access to scholarship at ScholarWorks.duke.edu.

The post Project Vox publishes du Châtelet’s “Essay on Optics” appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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Christine Wei is majoring in Public Policy with a minor in Education. About her Duke experience she says, “Duke’s been a big part of my life since 2013; I was originally in the Class of 2017 and had to take two years off because I went through a mid-college-career crisis. Since then, I’ve shifted my priorities to put health first ahead of everything else and found myself happier and healthier than before. The only project I’ve been working on is a kindness and happiness-based one. I try to look for one to three positive moments in each day and document those to focus more on the positive rather than the negative, particularly in a world dominated by tragic news.”

How has the library impacted your Duke experience?

Librarians have helped me with my research in almost every class. I’ve needed to access databases and refine searches for peer-reviewed articles and more. Duke Libraries also offered employment through my work-study, and that’s been helpful beyond words.

Duke student Christine Wei in Perkins Library What’s something you’ve discovered in the library?

I’ve rediscovered my innate curiosity for the way things work and why things are the way they are. For instance, I haven’t taken many natural science courses since high school, so learning more about popular science can be eye-opening.

What’s a favorite space or service? And why?

I love talking to librarians by the Perkins Service Desk. Doing so reminds me I’m always a part of something more and that collaboration trumps competition every time.

Christine’s library pro tip:

Don’t be afraid to ask for help! You’ll often find more than you expected.

My Duke Library is a project of the Research and Instructional Services department.

The post My Duke Library: Christine Wei’s Perspective appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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April is Arab American Heritage Month and National Poetry Month, so this month’s books are all Arab-American fiction, bilingual poetry, or poetry influenced by the Middle East. For more exciting reads, check out our Overdrive, New and Noteworthy, and Current Literature collections.

Dinarzad’s Children: An Anthology of Contemporary Arab American Fiction edited by Pauline Kaldas and Khaled Mattawa. The first edition of Dinarzad’s Children was a groundbreaking and popular anthology that brought to light the growing body of short fiction being written by Arab Americans. This expanded edition includes sixteen new stories – thirty in all – and new voices and is now organized into sections that invite readers to enter the stories from a variety of directions. Here are stories that reveal the initial adjustments of immigrants, the challenges of forming relationships, the political nuances of being Arab American, the vision directed towards homeland, and the ongoing search for balance and identity.

The contributors are D. H. Melhem, Mohja Khaf, Rabih Alameddine, Rawi Hage, Laila Halaby, Patricia Sarrafian Ward, Alia Yunis, Diana Abu Jaber, Susan Muaddi Darraj, Samia Serageldin, Alia Yunis, Joseph Geha, May Monsoor Munn, Frances Khirallah Nobel, Nabeel Abraham, Yussef El Guindi, Hedy Habra, Randa Jarrar, Zahie El Kouri, Amal Masri, Sahar Mustafah, Evelyn Shakir, David Williams, Pauline Kaldas, and Khaled Mattawa.

The Situe Stories by Frances Khirallah Noble. The situe, or Arabic grandmother, moves in and out of this collection of stories as they seek to capture the integration of Christian Arab women into American culture. The tales contain elements of magic and stoicism, presenting characters rich in independence and creativity.

Frances Khirallah Noble also wrote The New Belly Dancer of the Galaxy: A Novel about a middle-aged Syrian American optician who experiences a series of misadventures involving myth, magical realism, and the realities of Arab American life in a post-9/11 world.

Talking Through the Door: An Anthology of Contemporary Middle Eastern American Writing edited by Susan Atefat-Peckham with a foreword by Lisa Suhair Majaj. The writers included here are descendants of multiple cultural heritages and reflect the perspectives of various ethnic and cultural backgrounds: Egyptian, Iranian, Iraqi, Jordanian, Lebanese, Libyan, Palestinian, Syrian. They are from diverse socioeconomic classes and spiritual sensibilities: Jewish, Muslim, Christian, and atheist, among others. Yet they coexist in this volume as simply American voices.

Atefat-Peckham gathered poetry and prose from sixteen accomplished writers whose works concern a variety of themes: from the familial cross-cultural misunderstandings and conflicts in the works of Iranian American writers Nahid Rachlin and Roger Sedarat to the mysticism of Khaled Mattawa’s poems; from the superstitions that govern characters in Diana Abu-Jaber’s prose to the devastating homesickness in Pauline Kaldas’ characters. Filled with emotion and keen observations, this collection showcases these writers’ vital contributions to contemporary American literature.

The World is One Place: Native American Poets Visit the Middle East edited by Diane Glancy and Linda Rodriguez. This anthology explores how the Middle East has captured the imaginations of a significant group of Native American poets, most of whom have traveled to the Middle East (broadly defined to include the Arab world, Israel, Turkey, Afghanistan). What qualities of the region drew them there? What did they see? How did their cultural perspectives as Native Americans inform their reactions and insights? Three thematic sections – Place, People, Spirit – feature poems and notes inspired by the poets’ experiences of Middle Eastern cultures.

Contributors include Jim Barnes, Kimberly Blaeser, Trevino L. Brings Plenty, Natalie Diaz, Diane Glancy, Joy Harjo, Allison Hedge Coke, Travis Hedge Coke, Linda Hogan, LeAnne Howe, Bojan Louis, Craig Santos Perez, Linda Rodriguez, Kim Shuck, and James Thomas Stevens.

Armenian-American Poets: A Bilingual Anthology compiled and translated by Garig Basmadjian. A beautiful anthology of poetry written in English by Armenian-American poets, along with their translations into Armenian by author Garig Basmadjian.

This book was published by the Armenian General Benevolent Union, which was founded in 1906 and is dedicated to upholding Armenian heritage worldwide.

Beautiful Words: Kasuundze’ Kenaege’ by John Elvis Smelcer. A literary landmark, this bilingual collection of poems represents the only literature of the Ahtna culture in existence. Ahtna is one of twenty indigenous languages of Alaska and had no written form until the last thirty years. Here John Smelcer renders these poems in his native tongue with English translations.

To learn more about the Ahtna culture, visit the Ahtna Heritage Foundation’s website.

Arabic Poems: A Bilingual Edition edited by Marlé Hammond. Arabic poetry is as vast as it is deep, encompassing all manner of poetic expression from Morocco to Iraq and spanning more than fifteen centuries. In its early stages it formed part of an oral tradition, and there were systematic and collective efforts to transmit it to later generations. Poetry not only entertained and delighted, it also served to memorialize individuals, communities, and events. Even today, it has pride of place in the public domain, engaging the elites and the masses in equal measure, albeit in different registers. This anthology attempts to capture the breadth and depth of the Arabic poetic legacy through its inclusion of pieces composed from pre-Islamic times through to the twenty-first century.

Check out our catalog for other translated collections of Arabic poetry.

The post What to Read this Month: April 2019 appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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Classes are ending, food points are running out, and the weather is getting especially lovely. You might be saying, “I’m so over this semester” or find yourself in need of some extra cuddles. Well, we’re here to tell you we’ve got one last treat for you before you dig into finals week.

Did somebody say treat?

Do you hear that? It’s the sound of collars jingling, tails wagging, and all of your stresses floating away.

That’s right. It’s doggo time. Puppies in Perkins is back!

Finals? What finals?

Come join the Libraries and Duke PAWS in the Korman Assembly Room (Perkins 217) on Wednesday, April 30th for some quality time with Student’s Best Friend. From 1:00-3:00 pm, therapy dogs will be visiting the library to provide you with the study break —and snuggles— you need to finish this semester strong. There will also be fun, finals-themed button-making! Because who doesn’t love buttons?

We look furward to seeing you there!

Is it summer yet?

The post Treat Yourself – with Pups! Puppies in Perkins Apr. 30 appeared first on Duke University Libraries Blogs.

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