Monday, December 6, 2010

Food For Fines

It's that time again! Bring your non-perishable food item and exchange it for $2.50 (per item) towards any outstanding library fines you have incurred over the semester.

Picture courtesy of Brian Green's Blog:

Friday, December 3, 2010

Writer's Studio Hours for Exam Week

Friday, December 35:00p-10:00p
Saturday & Sunday, December 4-5CLOSED
Monday, December 65:00p-10:00p
Tuesday, December 75:00p-10:00p
Wednesday, December 85:00p-10:00p

Monday, November 29, 2010

Exam Hours Start Friday!

Exams are upon us once again! Time flies when you are having...well, you can fill in the blank there. We will have extended hours beginning on Friday, December 3rd. The rest of exam week's hours can be found below:

Friday, December 3 7:45 a.m. - 12:00 a.m.
Saturday, December 4 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Sunday, December 512:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, December 6-87:45 a.m. - 12:00 a.m.
Thursday, December 97:45 a.m. - 11:00 p.m.

Monday, November 15, 2010

National Ideas Competition for the Washington Monument Grounds (WAMO)

Every generation leaves its mark on the National Mall in Washington, DC. WAMO encourages people of all ages and experience levels to submit creative ideas for making the area around the Monument more welcoming, educational, and effectively used by the public.
The registration deadline has been extended through November 30, 2010. The deadline for submissions is December 18th. Please register today and submit an idea on the WAMO website.

There is plenty of time to develop your submission! Kenneth Bowling, a member of the Competition Steering Committee and adjunct professor at George Washington University explained: "It took architect and civil engineer Peter L'Enfant only fourteen days from the time of his arrival in Georgetown in 1791 to complete the draft of his idea for the entire 6000 acre federal city."

The Competition is led by an independent Steering Committee of university professors, architects and designers, and civic leaders in partnership with The George Washington University. The jury is composed of distinguished individuals who are creative and forward thinkers and span a variety of careers and perspectives: architecture, community planning, design, academia (geography, history, American studies), civics, and theater arts.

Sponsors include LearningTimes, Albert H. Small, George Washington University, the Virginia Society of the American Institute of Architects, Catholic University, American University, the University of Maryland, Virginia Tech, the University of Delaware, the University of Texas, and other educational and professional organizations.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Veteran's Day Weekend Viewing

Looking for something to watch this Veteran's Day weekend? Here are some recommendations.

1. The Pacific (miniseries, HBO Productions)

What better way to remember our veterans by watching HBO's epic 10 part miniseries, The Pacific? Filmed over a year-long period at an estimated cost of $200 million, The Pacific chronicles the lives of three U.S. Marines during the bitter and vicious fighting across the vast battlefield of the Pacific Theater of Operations.

2. Letters from Iwo Jima (film, Warner Brothers/Dreamworks SKG, 2007)

The flip side of the Pacific War, is this Clint Eastwood-directed and Steven Spielberg-produced film from 2007. Told from the Japanese perspective (with subtitles), the film shows the defense of a tiny atoll near the home Japanese islands.

3. Ken Burns' Civil War (documentary, PBS, 1990/2002 DVD)

The classic documentary on the American Civil War, now available (for us) on DVD.

4. World War I: 1914-1918 (documentary, Films for the Humanities, VHS)

This hour-long documentary covers all the bases for the so-called "War to End All Wars."

5. March of the Bonus Army (documentary, PBS, streaming video)

The poor treatment of U.S. military veterans is nothing new, unfortunately. This important documentary examines the plight of the Bonus Army, World War I veterans that marched on Washington and camped outside of the White House.

We also have a lot of documentaries available on our history film database, American History in Film.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Real Education Book Discussion

Join Dr. Joseph Rubinstein for what will prove to be a very animated discussion of Charles Murray's 2008 book.

November 15, 2010


Faculty Research Room - LITC 228

Light refreshments will be served

Watch a short video from BookTV.

From School Library Journal

Murray (Losing Ground: American Social Policy, 1950–1980; coauthor, The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life) proposes four "simple truths"—ability varies, half of all children are below average, too many people are going to college, and America's future depends on how we educate the gifted—for parents, educators, and policymakers to confront. The current focus of the educational system, Murray contends, of educating all children to the same level and holding them to the same standards (i.e., No Child Left Behind) ignores these four truths and attempts to prepare most children to earn a B.A., though many of them are not suited for college and would be happier and more productive in different careers. He suggests that bachelor's degrees should be reserved for students with the ability and interest in careers requiring it and instead there should be a series of national certifications to show what a job candidate can actually do. Murray's argument is controversial but well researched. His book is highly recommended for public and academic libraries.—Mark Bay, Cumberland Coll. Lib., Williamsburg, KY

Read the review from the Chronicle of Higher Education.from Gale's Academic OneFile

Friday, October 29, 2010

Library at the Taste of Coker

The library had a terrific time at Taste of Coker 2010. Genna and Charles did a great job of serving up some excellent chocolate. Willy Wonka and Roald Dahl would have been proud. Check out the video on our facebook page.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Fall Public Review of Instructional Materials

We are assisting the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) with the fall public review of instructional materials that have been recommended for adoption. The purpose of the review is to solicit citizen input regarding the potential textbooks and instructional materials to be included on the state adopted list. The State Board of Education will receive for approval the adoption recommendations along with a summary report of comments from the public review on December 8, 2010.

The public review period is from October 8 through November 7, 2010. The items we have received are displayed in the lounge area on the high counter closest to the reference section.

Please use the available comment forms to provide feedback on these materials.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Peanut Butter for Carolina Kids

Coker College Commissioners are collecting 16 oz. or less jars of peanut butter for an important local charity, Carolina Kids. Although we'll be collecting peanut butter jars in the library until the cutoff date of October 1, the Commissioners will be with us today from 10am-5pm collecting and answering any questions you might have.

More about Carolina Kids:

"Carolina Kids, a non-profit organization in Darlington County, is teaming with school and community partners in an effort to ensure that students have food at times when school is not in session, weekends and breaks in the regular school year.

Carolina Kids have a food program titles Hunger Busters that provides bags of supplemental, kid friendly food to children who are "food insecure" over the weekend. When a child is "food insecure," he or she is at great risk of going hungry. To combat this problem, food is delivered weekly to participating schools when volunteers pack and distribute them.

Carolina Kids currently distribute 1,050 meals per week to children in public schools."

Monday, September 20, 2010

Reimagine Libraries: Telephone Booth Books

One of Britain’s few remaining traditional red phone booths has been recycled into one of the country’s smallest lending libraries – stocking 100 books. Villagers from Westbury-sub-Mendip in Somerset can use the library around the clock, selecting books, DVDs and CDs. Users simply stock it with a book they have read, swapping it for one they have not.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

9/11 Remembrance Banners

Currently banners are being displayed in the LITC in remembrance of 9/11. We invite you to drop in, grab a marker, and express your thoughts on that day.

The banners will be leaving the library tomorrow morning (9/9/10) to be hung in the Susanne G. Linville Dining Hall.

Fun with Lexis Nexis

If you've ever used Lexis Nexis, the last way you would ever describe the experience would be "fun." Don't get me wrong: Lexis Nexis is an exceptional, powerful resource. It can be a bit daunting, even for a librarian.

What is Lexis Nexis? It is a full-text database with over 16,000 published sources, blogs, press releases, pamphlets, brochures, magazines, TV and radio broadcast transcripts, and many other sources in a variety of languages.

Lexis Nexis is a no-frills database, meaning you won't get images and PDF versions of articles -- but you will get an enormous range of content, with one legal journal beginning in 1831 (most coverage begins in the 1980s however).

The good folks at Lexis Nexis recently created a Youtube channel with very helpful video tutorials. Check this one about how to find a story from National Public Radio in 60 seconds:

Here is an introduction to entire database, definitely worth seven minutes of your time:

The entire video collection can be found here:

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Reimagine Libraries: Biblioburro

Biblioburro: A traveling library that distributes books to patrons from the backs of two donkeys, Alfa and Beto.

Luis Soriano, and elementary school teacher from La Gloria, Columbia, came up with the idea of Biblioburro after witnessing first-hand the power reading had on his students. Since the late 1990s, Soriano has traveled to communities in Colombia's Caribbean Sea hinterlands with a portable library, which began with only 70 books.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Library Sponsors Book Discussions

The Coker College Library will be sponsoring book discussions throughout the 2010 - 2011 academic year. The community is welcome to join us. Our first book is The Help by Kathryn Stockett. The discussion will be led by Dr. Jeanne F. Cook, Professor of Social Work and Chair of the Social Department. Please join us on Thursday September 30 at 11:00am in the library for our first discussion.

From Publishers Weekly... What perfect timing for this optimistic, uplifting debut novel ... set during the nascent civil rights movement in Jackson, Miss., where black women were trusted to raise white children but not to polish the household silver. Eugenia Skeeter Phelan is just home from college in 1962, and, anxious to become a writer, is advised to hone her chops by writing about what disturbs you. The budding social activist begins to collect the stories of the black women on whom the country club sets relies and mistrusts enlisting the help of Aibileen, a maid who's raised 17 children, and Aibileen's best friend Minny, who's found herself unemployed more than a few times after mouthing off to her white employers. The book Skeeter puts together based on their stories is scathing and shocking, bringing pride and hope to the black community, while giving Skeeter the courage to break down her personal boundaries and pursue her dreams. (February 2009)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Reference Desk is back!

Well, it never really left...but it will now be staffed at these times:

Monday 2-8 PM
Tuesday 2-4 PM
Wednesday 2-4 PM
Thursday 2-8 PM

Why use a reference librarian? Because it will save you time by getting you to appropriate and reliable resources much more quickly.

We (Alexa and Todd) are always available by e-mail, phone, and chat reference -- just check the About Us page for contact information.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Picture of the Day: 8/20/2010

We've had some water leaks due to the heavy rains last night. Fortunately, no books or computers were damaged! The library is open and fully operational...just mind the mess!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Picture of the Day, 8/19/10


The baristas are back behind the bar (say that 3 times fast). LITC's resident coffee shop has opened its doors to the public. Now, who wants a Javalanche?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Picture of the Day, 8/14/2010 - 7:30 A.M.

This year the LITC hosted Student Orientation, welcoming one of the biggest incoming classes in Coker's history.

Welcome Freshmen!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Reimagine Libraries: Book Bike

"Everyone has the right to build and cherish a private library."

With this in mind, Gabriel Levinson of Chicago created the Book Bike: a custom-built tricycle stocked with 200 lbs of free books. Since July of 2008, the Book Bike has been responsible for placing over 3,000 new and used books into peoples’ hands. Weather-permitting, you’ll find the Book Bike at Chicago public parks on the weekends; anyone who wants a book is invited to take something home to read.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Picture of the Day, 7/28/2010

Most of our study rooms are now equipped with dry erase boards. Dry-erase markers and erasers will be available for checkout.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

National Library Advocacy Day 2010

Library supporters from around the country will join together today, June 29, to express their support for library-friendly funding and policies to the U.S. Congress. The rally will take place on Capitol Hill and will serve as a visual reminder to members of the U.S. Congress that libraries still matter. Tell our South Carolina legislators today how important libraries are to our communities and schools. Your voice makes a difference. Our voices together can make a big difference. For more information click here.

Monday, June 28, 2010

LITC Book Review: Chronicle of a Death Foretold

Chronicle of a Death Foretold
by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

As the library's Writer in Residence, I use my time in the stacks to familiarize myself with celebrated authors and award wining pieces of
literature. I can say without reservation that Gabo’s Chronicle of a Death Foretold is every bit deserving of its Nobel Prize. Journalistically, through a series of facts and firsthand accounts, he crafts a non-linear story just as descriptive and engrossing as any of his romantic epics. Delivering on the promises made by its title, Marquez recants the events leading up to the death of our story's would-be protagonist, Santiago Nasar, a moderately wealthy man-about-town. Masterfully, Marquez manages to tell us the same story more than once and keep it interesting, each go around revealing enough information to satisfy the reader’s curiosity. We’re turned into silent voyeurs desperately trying to seek out the sordid details of this gruesome murder as Gabo’s nameless narrator pieces together the snapshot in his mind. Every young journalist should be made to read this book if only to explore the limits of the medium. With Chronicle we are reminded that writing can be primarily informative without foregoing the art of storytelling, a lesson that compliments so beautifully the sense of magical-realism present in all of Marquez’s work.

out of 4 Cobras

Thursday, June 24, 2010

FireFox Catalog Search Add-on

I've developed a search plug-in for the Firefox web browser which will allow users to search the Coker Library catalog directly from their browser. You can download it here: Coker College Mozilla Firefox Add-on. Mozilla, the development organization behind Firefox, hasn't full tested the search plug-in yet, but we've been testing here for a couple of weeks without any problems.

Give it a try and let us know here or elsewhere how you like it.

Also, here's a little Firefox tip. The search plug-in box controls the default search engine the browser uses for highlight searches. For instance, I was reading an article about the first Xerox copying machine (think about it: easily copied documents was a huge first step in the digital age) and found the author of a book on the subject by the name of David Owen. I highlighted his name, right-clicked on it, and was given the option to search our catalog for his name:

This trick works with whatever web service you have selected in the Search Box. By default, it will be Google for most people but there are thousands to choose from. Including a Coker library catalog search.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

LITC Book Review: Natives and Exotics: World War II and Environment in the Southern Pacific

As the library's resident World War II expert, I've read many volumes covering the various aspects of combat during those dark days of the 1930s and 1940s. From veteran's memoirs and in-depth histories of particular operations or battles to broad coverage of the entire conflict, most of these tomes cover the combat and heroics of front line troops. A few might mention the rear echelon soldiers, sailors and airmen, but most look at these troops with derision (with nicknames unprintable here). A few cover these troops well, like David Colley's The Road to Victory : the Untold Story of World War II's Red Ball Express.

Judith A. Bennett's Natives and Exotics: World War II and Environment in the Southern Pacific is unique because it is one of the first books to cover the great environmental impact of having over 2 million men and women -- Japanese, Dutch, Australian, and American -- invade the hostile environment of the Southern Pacific. Although tales of combat are mentioned, most of the book deals with the rear areas and the troops that provided medical care, supplies, and food to the frontline soldiers and Marines.

Most casual readers of World War II history know that the Pacific theater was a difficult place to wage war, but most probably didn't know how difficult it was just to survive on some of those islands. Incessant rain, disease, poor sanitation practices, and lack of food/diversity of diet were some of the major environmental factors affecting both sides -- and all of that happened before combat even started!

Bennett tells of the infamous fighting on the Kokoda Trail, between Australian (and later U.S.) and Japanese troops. The Japanese military was still unstoppable at this point - the Philippines, Wake Island, Guam, and Singapore had fallen and now Australia itself was threatened. The Japanese military decided to land on the northern coast of New Guinea, near the villages of Buna and Gona. Their objective was to take Port Moresby, on the southern coast, via a "road" through the treacherous Owen Stanley Mountains. Their beachhead was located near malarial swamps, so by the time the Japanese troops met the Australian forces, they were in the throes of malaria. Moving their bivouacs out of these swamps, and using better anti-malarial practices might have had a huge impact on the Japanese troops' performance. The Aussies were using better anti-malarial practices (basically getting rid of mosquito larvae, defoliating, issuing insect repellent, and so on) and thus were able to fight at almost full strength. However, when American forces joined the Australians late in the campaign, they disregarded the successful anti-malarial practices (more than likely, supplies were low of bug repellent and defoliants) and suffered greatly from a large outbreak of malaria, impairing their performance. Not surprisingly, U.S. forces made a habit of disregarding local or Allied expertise in fighting in the environs of the South Pacific.

With every soldier or Marine, food was of utmost importance -- even if only for keeping morale high. Shipping the food across the great expanse of the Pacific Ocean was costly. Refrigeration was in high demand for blood plasma, so food supplies were often canned or dehydrated. Both combatants turned to local gardens and native farming to help give their troops some variety in the mess halls and in the field. For the Japanese on isolated outposts late in the war (after their naval link to the home islands was cut), this local gardening was all they had. Bennett does an excellent job discussing the different types of crops and methods used, as well as incorporating natives and their practices into farming.

Fishing proved to be an important food source for both sides, and they would even use explosives (when they could be spared) to blast the fish to the surface. Australian forces set up fish processing stations using local Melanesian labor and allowing the islanders to design their own workstations. Americans took a different tack. They supplied their support troops with fishing gear designed to work in the cold waters of New England. The tackle was too heavy to use near the coral reefs that permeate the South Pacific, so few fish were caught without modifying the gear. Once fish was caught and ready to be processed, American forces set up elaborate processing stations for local labor to utilize, with tables and benches. The islanders had been fishing for many generations using their own methods. They preferred to clean and process fish sitting on the ground, cross-legged. Needless to say, satisfactory changes were made and the islanders began processing record amounts of fish for hospitals and outposts.

Bennett includes pictures, charts, maps, and ample graphs. The book is heavily footnoted and has a substantial bibliography. Not exactly for the casual history reader, the book is a good read and breaks new ground in an important field of study.

out of 4 Cobras

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Picture of the Day, 6/10/2010

We need to do more pics of the day. Anyway, coming soon to a study room near you: Dry Erase Boards!

We had several requests for dry erase boards for the study rooms (or at least something to cover the walls in those rooms) in the results of our Student Evaluation last Spring. We hope to have them installed early next week.

New Printers in the Library

We've ordered two full color models of this printer for the LITC. Just kidding.

We'll have a real blog post announcement later on this summer to introduce our new color printers and scanner.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Porter Fleming Literary Competition

This writing competition is held in memory of Porter Fleming, a prominent Augusta, Georgia, citizen and one of the city’s foremost philanthropists. With grant support from the Porter Fleming Foundation, the competition is being administered this year by the Morris Museum of Art, the first museum in the country to focus on the art and artists of the American South. Writers residing in Georgia, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina, and North Carolina may participate. Check out the Porter Fleming Literary Competition web site for details.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Study/Media/Conference Room Availability

We've got a new way to see which study/media/conference rooms are currently available in the LITC:

This web page will list the current availability of keys for these rooms. As mentioned in a previous blog entry, all study rooms will now be key access only.