Resources

For posts about collections and electronic resource (including items we own, items we license, and others that are freely available but recommended by our staff in topical bibliography posts, etc.), due dates (if we continue to post due dates); database trials, preservation.

New online resource: The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law

Max Planck Encyclopedia logoUniversity of Chicago researchers now have access to a new global research tool licensed by the Library – the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law. Oxford University Press launched the Encyclopedia on April 27, 2017 with 70 articles, and will have over 570 articles when completed. The Encyclopedia includes articles on children’s rights, the right to education, the right to privacy, supreme/constitutional courts of Argentina, Colombia, France, Israel, Japan, and Mexico, and much, much more. It complements the primary constitutional texts, source materials, and expert commentary in the Oxford Constitutions of the World and Oxford U.S. Constitutional Law databases – also available on the Oxford Constitutional Law platform.

Here is an excerpt from the OUP launch announcement:

“Overseen by the editors at the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law will provide a high level of analytic coverage of constitutional law topics in a comparative context. The encyclopedia articles—modeled on those in the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law—address a focused range of topics that seek to provide the best coverage of the essence, character, development, and history of constitutional law from a global perspective. The articles will define and cover the basis and foundations of state formation and constitutional law, as well as analyzing and explaining underlying legal concepts such as:

  • human rights;
  • constitutional formation;
  • scope of state protections;
  • the defining structures of governmental makeup;
  • types of legal structures and interactions within a constitutional law system; and
  • legal constitutional concepts that make up constitutional law.

In addition, articles provide insight and detail into key cases that have contributed to or defined constitutional law concepts on a global scale such as Brown v Board of Education (United States), the Mizrahi Bank Case (Israel), the Minerva Mills Case (India), and Marbury v Madison (United States), and discuss key instruments in constitutional law history such as the Magna Carta and the Charter of Medina, among others. The service provides browsing and searching of all of the material within the resource based on keywords and subjects….”

Check it out!

Online tutorials in the sciences and medicine

Looking to do some online training over the summer?  Check out one of these options:

University of Chicago Library receives vintage Vivian Maier prints

Nearly 500 photographs to be available for research at Special Collections

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The University of Chicago Library has received a gift of nearly 500 photographic prints made by Vivian Maier, the master 20th-century street photographer known for her striking images of life in Chicago and New York City.

The prints, given to the University by collector and filmmaker John Maloof, will be preserved and made available for research purposes by the Library’s Special Collections Research Center. The new collection is comprised of vintage prints that have never been published or exhibited to the public, along with one of Maier’s cameras and some of her personal effects.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

“This collection of prints will help researchers and students to understand Maier as a working photographer,” said Daniel Meyer, director of the Special Collections Research Center. “As a new discovery in 20th-century American photography, Vivian Maier’s work also offers fresh insights into the viewpoints and graphic styles of her contemporaries.”

The UChicago collection is the first of Maier’s work to be held by a research institution, allowing scholars to study her photography and creative process in the city that was her home.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

Maier’s work became known to the public less than a decade ago. Maloof in 2008 found himself with a trove of more than 100,000 photographs after purchasing the contents of several of Maier’s storage lockers at auction. His investigation into Maier’s life and work was told in the Academy Award-nominated documentary Finding Vivian Maier, which Maloof co-wrote and co-directed.

Maier was born in New York City in 1926. She spent much of her early life traveling the world before finding a home in 1956 in Chicago, where she worked as a nanny to support her photography. It was only after her death in 2009 that Maier’s work was displayed in museums and galleries to widespread acclaim.

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

“Vivian Maier herself is unique as a photographer because of her personal story and the remarkable quality of her work,” said Brenda Johnson, Library director and University librarian at UChicago. “Seeing these prints will help viewers to step back into Maier’s time and place and to explore her perspective.”

Maloof donated the prints to the University to allow for researchers to better explore Maier’s printing process and understand how her work evolved. “There’s more here that she physically created with her hands—that can be studied—than has ever been open to the public,” Maloof said. “This is what made her tick, who she was as an artist.”

Maier’s work will join collections of a range of female photographers held by the UChicago Library, including photo-secessionist Eva Watson Schütze, documentary photographer Mildred Mead, anthropologist Joan Eggan and literary photographer Layle Silbert.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The prints in the Maier collection represent the range of subjects she captured from the 1950s to the 1980s. Included in the collections are images of recognizable political, religious and cultural figures, along with the intimate street portraits of anonymous men, women and children. The collection has images—often captured curbside—of John F. Kennedy, Eleanor Roosevelt, Pope John Paul II, Eva Marie Saint and Frank Sinatra, among others. While past exhibitions of Maier’s work have typically featured large-format prints made from negatives by collectors, the UChicago holdings are comprised of prints made by Maier through commercial photo labs or in her own darkroom.

“A lot of the work in this collection has her process visible,” Maloof said. “She’s printing in different ways, she’s cropping in different ways, and you can see her hand in the process. You can study that, and I think that could be important for people to research.”

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The Maier collection is currently being processed and is expected to be made available to researchers by the end of the year.

Maloof plans to donate additional photographs made by Maier to the UChicago Library.

Press Inquiries and Images

Note: The copyrights in the photography contained in this news release are owned by the Estate of Vivian Maier. The estate grants a limited, royalty-free, perpetual, non-exclusive license to media and press to reproduce the attached images in articles concerning Vivian Maier and/or John Maloof’s donation of vintage prints of Vivian Maier’s work to the University of Chicago. High-resolution versions of images may be used in connection with print versions of articles only. For electronic and online publications, the reproduced images may not exceed 1,500 pixels on the longest side and 72 dpi. Unauthorized reproduction, distribution or exhibition could result in liability under the Copyright Act.

Publication of these images requires use of this notice: “Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier.  All rights reserved.”

To obtain images and for other press inquiries:
Andrew Bauld, News Officer for Arts and Humanities
News Office
773-702-8378
Reserved for members of the media.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

New online resource: Black Freedom Struggle in the Twentieth Century

Mississippi Subversion of the Right to Vote

Cover of Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) pamphlet published in Atlanta, 1965

Researchers at the University of Chicago now have access to Black Freedom Struggle in the Twentieth Century, a collection of digital primary sources consisting of government documents, organizational records, and personal papers. The resource, which consists of four modules, includes major collections of civil rights records from the Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and George H. W. Bush presidencies; the Martin Luther King FBI file and FBI files on locations of major civil rights demonstrations; and the records of the American Committee on Africa (ACOA); Records of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters; Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs (NACWC), Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). Also included in the collection are the personal papers of Mary McLeod Bethune and Charles A. Barnett.

Global population data available

The LandScan 2015 Global Population Database is now available to access and use on the computers in the University of Chicago Library Map Collection. Find the files in the Map Collection computers’ @work drive in the folder LandScan_2015_GlobalPopulation.
Screenshot of LandScan 2015 Population Database

East View, the data publisher, provides this information about the updated database:

  • Adjusted population totals and distributions for Syria, Iraq and Ukraine to account for refugee and internally displaced persons movements as of June 2016
  • Results from Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s LandScan HD data, (developed at 3 arc-seconds) for certain national and regional areas
  • Output from Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s “Settlement Mapper Tool” (which rapidly delineates and characterizes settlements using high-resolution imagery)
  • Refined urban built-up areas
  • Thousands of additional smaller villages and populated places
  • Improved spatial precision and population distribution values

The library also has the LandScan 2007 Global Population Database.

For assistance or questions about accessing this or other spatial data through the University of Chicago Library, contact Resident Librarian for GIS Taylor Hixson (taylorhixson@uchicago.edu). More information about the library’s support for spatial data and GIS is available in the library’s research guide.

Uncovering history through rare book cataloging

Jennifer Dunlap with Ptolemy’s "Geographia"

Special Collections Project Cataloger Jennifer Dunlap with Ptolemy’s “Geographia.” (Ulm: Justus Albano, 1486.) Call number: alc Incun 1486.P93. (Photo by Joel Wintermantle)

Not all copies of a book are created equal. A copy of the Odyssey printed in the hand press era (1450 to roughly the 1840s), for example, would have different qualities than one printed in the machine press era (the 1840s to the present). What is more, each copy of a book takes on its own distinct history as it is acquired, studied, and passed from one person or institution to another.  The extra-textual elements found in rare books—from handwritten annotations to bookplates, bindings, and stamps—can reveal a history that is vital to a scholar’s research.

Thanks to the support of Julie and Roger Baskes, the Special Collections Research Center is undertaking a major project to enhance its rare book cataloging, making the special characteristics of individual rare books readily discoverable by researchers around the world. Over the past year, Special Collections Project Cataloger Jennifer Dunlap and dedicated graduate rare books assistants have reviewed, corrected, and enhanced bibliographic records for more than 4,000 titles, making edits to the online University of Chicago Library Catalog and WorldCat, a global catalog of library collections.

Along the way, they have discovered many previously buried treasures. For example, the catalog record for the Library’s 1486 edition of Ptolemy’s Geographia now makes note of the presence of the 32 hand-colored woodcut maps—including the pictured one with costly and striking blue paint filling the oceans. A box of sheet music previously listed under a single title was found to contain 75 pieces of music about President James Garfield.  Several were unique pieces not included in WorldCat until Dunlap created a new record there. “This project is not just impacting our local University of Chicago Catalog, but is also allowing other institutions to discover resources globally via WorldCat and link their own holdings to it,” she explained.

Re-cataloging a title can take from as little as five minutes to an entire day. Dunlap describes the style of binding and marks of ownership in the record, as well as adding applicable terms that can aid in searching.  If users made edits to the printed text, correcting a misspelling, adding a missing word or phrase, or censoring a word or line, Dunlap notes the presence of these edits in the online catalog record, transcribing them in full if they are short.  For example, the Library’s copy of Chronicles of England (circa 1486) includes crossed-out references to the pope and the sainthood and martyrdom of Thomas of Canterbury, suggesting that the owner may have been expressing anti-Catholic sentiments after the establishment of the independent Church of England.

In the eyes of scholars and experienced catalogers such as Dunlap, the many marks left by former owners bring a book’s readership to life.  Dunlap’s cataloging work continues so that more stories of writers and their readers can be discovered and written over time.

Boethius’ "Consolation of Philosophy"

The description of this book, Boethius’ “Consolation of Philosophy,” in the catalog record indicates the presence of numerous hand-colored woodcut illustrations. (Boethius. “De consolatione philosophiae.” Strassbourg: Johann Grüninger, 1501.)

New online resource: Nevo

The Library recently subscribed to Nevo, a database of Israeli law. It includes primary law (legislation, bills, regulations, case-law) and secondary law sources (articles, books). Access is campuswide. Searching is in Hebrew, but users can use their favorite translation tool (for example, Google Chrome or Google Translate) to navigate the database if needed. Try it out, and let us know what you think!

Westlaw, Lexis, and Bloomberg Law access over the summer

Your law student accounts for Westlaw, Lexis, and Bloomberg Law can all be used over the summer, though under different terms for each service.

Westlaw

Rising 2Ls and 3Ls:

You can use Thomson Reuters products, including Westlaw and Practical Law, over the summer for non-commercial research. You can turn to these resources to gain understanding and build confidence in your research skills, but you cannot use them in situations where you are billing a client. Examples of permissible uses for your academic password include the following:

  • Summer coursework
  • Research assistant assignments
  • Law Review or Journal research
  • Moot Court research
  • Non-Profit work
  • Clinical work
  • Externship sponsored by the school

Unlike last year, you do not have to do anything to gain access to these tools over the summer.

Graduating 3Ls:

Graduating students will have full access to Westlaw through June 30, 2017. Graduating students can also continue to use Westlaw through the Graduate Elite program, which will extend their access through the end of November. Graduating students should have received an email regarding this program and can locate information about the Graduate Elite program on the https://lawschool.westlaw.com homepage.

For help or more information, contact the Law School’s Westlaw Account Manager Tami Carson at Tami.Carson@thomsonreuters.com.

Lexis

Rising 2Ls and 3Ls:

Returning students will have full access to Lexis Advance during the summer without special registration.

Graduating 3Ls:

Graduates have full Lexis Advance access through December 31, 2017. For help or more information, contact our LexisNexis Account Executive, Carter Mills Isham at carter.mills@lexisnexis.com.

Bloomberg Law

Rising 2Ls and 3Ls:

Bloomberg Law provides unlimited and unrestricted access over the summer. There is no need to register, as your student account will remain active and available all summer.

Graduating 3Ls:

Students graduating this spring have unlimited and unrestricted access to Bloomberg Law for six months after graduation.

For help or more information, contact our Bloomberg Law Account Manager, Chrishantha Vedhanayagam at cvedhanayagam@bna.com.

Exam preparation resources at the D’Angelo Law Library

The D’Angelo Law Library provides a variety of resources to help students prepare for exams.

Past exams: Perhaps most importantly, the Library provides copies of past exams given at the Law School, in addition to model student answers and memos written by the professors where available. The exams are organized by course and faculty member. Everything we have been given permission to post is available on the Library website.

Screenshot of Law Library website

Study Supplements: Another helpful resource for preparing student outlines and studying for exams are the many study supplements, including the popular Examples & Explanations and Understanding series, that are available in the Reserve Room. Our Hornbooks & Study Supplements page provides lists of the available study supplements by course name. Students also have access to the online West Academic Study Aids package. This package provides online access to many of the study supplements, including West’s Concise Hornbook Series, the Law Stories Series, and all of the Nutshells.

CALI Lessons: If you prefer something more interactive, CALI lessons might be the resource for you.  The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) provides UofC law students with access to nearly 1,000 internet-based lessons on different legal topics. Lessons range from core 1L courses (92 lessons on property, for example) to many different upper level courses. CALI lessons are often interactive and feature questions to test your knowledge as you go through them. If you have not already registered an account with CALI, you can Ask a Law Librarian to get the authorization code for the Law School.

Student Outlines: Student outlines for various courses taught at the Law School are made available by the UChicago Law Students Association (LSA) in an online outline bank on the LSA’s website. You will need to enter a password to access. If you do not have the password, Ask a Law Librarian.

Study Rooms: If you want to meet with a study group, the D’Angelo Law Library has seven study rooms that can be reserved online: two study rooms on each of the 4th, 5th and 6th floors, and one study room on the second floor. Law students may reserve use of a study room using the Law School’s room reservation system. For further assistance, see How to Reserve a Law Library Study Room.

Quiet Study Space: Quieter study spaces are available on the upper floors of the Law Library. Law School students are also able to study in any of the other libraries on campus. Crerar, Mansueto, and Regenstein will extend weekend building hours during reading period and finals week. For a full list of library hours, see https://www.lib.uchicago.edu/using/libraries-hours/.

Lockers: Please remember to secure your belongings when you take breaks. You can check out a locker key from the Circulation Desk. Library lockers are located in the northeast corner of the second and third floors. Two types of lockers are available: laptop lockers, which are smaller and each equipped with an electrical outlet, and bookbag lockers, which are large enough to accommodate a bookbag and/or coat.

Good luck with exams!

Behind the life and work of Saul Bellow

In the late 1950s, novelist Saul Bellow, X’39, found himself living in upstate New York in a well-worn house with Ralph Ellison, the acclaimed author of Invisible Man, as a roommate. A trove of correspondence remains from the two years that the literary odd couple lived under the same roof.

One letter, faded and yellowed, is dated May 15, 1959. It mostly details gutter repairs and the state of spring flowers. A postscript states a rake had been purchased. But Ellison slips in an aside on Bellow’s acclaimed novel Henderson the Rain King that had just been published.

“Henderson, by the way, continues to raise the decibels at literary get togethers. You threw some real whiskey in the placid water of the literary well and I’ve been laughing my can off to see them try to deal with it.”

Ellison’s delight is one of countless glimpses into Bellow’s life—30-plus years of which he spent as a University of Chicago professor—that emerges from the letters, personal writings and unpublished works recently made public in the Saul Bellow Papers at the University of Chicago Library.

“The University and the city of Chicago were the home of much of Bellow’s writing, and no other location was more appropriate as a permanent location of his papers,” said Daniel Meyer, director of the Library’s Special Collections Research Center.

The opening of the archives, following extensive organization and cataloguing of the collection made possible by the financial support of Robert Nelson, AM’64, and Carolyn Nelson, AM’64, PhD’67, will provide new insights into Bellow, Chicago and 20th-century American literature. In addition to his correspondences, the archives contain ephemera—from Bellow’s Rolodex to handmade art by his children–as well as photographs and audio recordings. But of real significance to scholars will be drafts of Bellow’s published and unpublished works.

Bellow biographer Zachary Leader called the papers “a tremendous boon for people who are interested in Bellow’s life and work. Unless you know the intermediate, unfinished works, you don’t know how his ideas evolved, how his style evolved.”

Finding the right note

Born in Montreal in 1915, Bellow was raised in Chicago, most notably the Humboldt Park neighborhood. He spent two years as an undergraduate at UChicago before completing his degree at Northwestern University.

In 1962, he returned to Chicago as a faculty member in the Committee on Social Thought and remained for more than three decades, winning nearly every major award in literature, including both the Pulitzer Prize and the Nobel Prize in 1976. Over those years, Bellow made regular deposits of his personal writings to the University’s archives.

The process of cataloguing the papers was no easy task. Lead archivist Ashley Gosselar spent more than a year organizing the works that now span 254 boxes, extending nearly half the length of a football field.

“It is an enormous collection,” Gosselar said. “The challenge of this project was in reuniting the different fragments of drafts. They were very scattered. That took some real sleuthing.”

Making her job even more difficult was the fact that Bellow, who revised constantly, rarely if ever dated his work, but Gosselar said she discovered an appreciation for the artistry behind Bellow’s tinkering.

“With Bellow’s drafts, it’s so clear that he was constantly reworking sentences, until he hit on the right note,” Gosselar said. “It was kind of like listening to a jazz musician improvise. He wrote variation after variation of a sentence until it was the melody he wanted.”

While the notes of the melody may have changed, the city of Chicago and the University proved a consistent theme of Bellow’s oeuvre.

As a youth, Bellow discovered his love for books in the recesses of the Humboldt Park branch of the Chicago Public Library. “I am an American, Chicago born,” begins The Adventures of Augie March (1953), for which Bellow received the National Book Award. The Russian bathhouses that once lined Division Street inspired Humboldt’s Gift (1975). And Bellow’s friend and fellow Social Thought committee member Allan Bloom would become the basis for the titular character of his final novel, Ravelstein (2000)

‘Thanks for your letter…’

Bellow kept to a strict writing schedule each morning, but his afternoons were spent at the University, where he taught graduate students in courses ranging from Ulysses to Nietzsche.

In the papers, one gets a sense for the soft spot Bellow seems to have had for academics and the generally curious, something Leader noticed in the course of his own research through the archives.

“He read all sorts of seemingly uninteresting correspondence,” Leader said. “He had great patience if he detected something intelligent. If the ignorant person seemed to have a good heart, he’d answer them.”

In one letter, a student who describes himself as a 35-year-old computer engineer, includes a copy of a college essay he wrote on Bellow.

“Thanks for your letter,” Bellow replied. “I found the T.S. Eliot parallel full of charm, but also quite baffling. It was a good try nevertheless and I much enjoyed it. Sincerely yours, Saul Bellow.”

Of course, there are also correspondences with luminaries from literature and beyond, including the likes of Philip Roth, AM’55, and John F. Kennedy. While some, like the Ellison letters, are cordial, others reveal awe in writing to the famed novelist.

The author Dave Eggers writes of drawing strength from Bellow’s novels while working on his own first work of fiction. “I just wanted you to know that every single sentence of yours makes me believe,” Eggers writes.

But among the multitudes writing him, one letter from a 17-year-old fan speaks volume to Bellow’s impact on readers. In the letter, a fan tells Bellow of her initial dislike of Herzog, but her critique soon turns to praise.

“Tonight I am on page 135 and figured that it was about time I wrote you a fan letter of sorts because I am no longer bored or apathetic about reading it,” she writes. “It’s damn good writing. I feel it inside of me. My insides say yes to it.”

A University of Chicago feature