Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Junior Research Paper = Library Shopping Spree


 The two months leading up to the junior history paper due date are an exceptionally busy time for students, but also for us in the library. I am approximating here, but more than half of our working hours during September and October are dedicated to the juniors' history project. Our time is spent helping students understand how to better research topics, searching for books in the stacks and on databases and accessing information from all over the electronic world of academia. Not only our energy, but much of our annual budget also goes into the juniors' projects. By ordering thesis supporting books, we strive to build up the collection for this year's research and beyond.  So far in this academic year, Mrs. Chase has ordered almost 60 books for juniors' research endeavors! This does not include the DVDs and articles that will be arriving soon. It should be noted that we try to order second hand books in addition to Amazon prime books, although we keep delivery timing and condition of books a priority.

Needless to say, we also wind up succumbing to our own curiosities about the subjects and therefore continue to offer support to students via emails and discussions at the desk. Sometimes we even find ourselves ruminating about your topics on our own free time....Gwen's Motown topic has me thinking a lot about Detroit in the late 1950's.... And Sarah's idea of the Navajo Code Talkers is riveting and Wyatt's take on propaganda and American culture....Ok, Ok, maybe I am spending a little too much time thinking about the junior theses. Lest I forget, Phil's depiction of Nathaniel Bacon should be great, too!

We have had appointments with at least 85 juniors thus far and this is a conservative estimate. That is 75% of the class! It is really impressive to see some great historical arguments in the early stages and we look forward to reading your finished papers.

Here are some select titles that are already circulating on campus and our brains:

The Birth of Bebop: A Social and Musical History

Tobacco and Slaves: The Development of Southern Cultures in the Chesapeake, 1680-1800

In The Courts of the Conqueror: The 10 Worst Indian Law Cases Ever Decided

Cults, Conspiracies, and Secret Societies: The Straight Scoop on Freemasons, The Illuminati, Skull and Bones

Tales from a Revolution: Bacon's Rebellion and the Transformation of Early America

Getting in the Game: Title IX and the Women's Sports Revolution

Boycott: Stolen Dreams of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games

The Most Famous Woman in Baseball: Effa Manley and the Negro Leagues

Murder, Culture, and Injustice: Four Sensational Cases in American History

Music of the Great Depression

Heavenly Merchandize: How Religion Shaped Commerce in Puritan America

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