Libraries Participate in Archives Month Philly

Temple University Libraries are thrilled to participate in Archives Month Philly, a first-ever programming initiative organized by the Delaware Valley Archivists Group. This month-long festival, timed to coincide with American Archives Month, will kick off in Paley Library on Tuesday, October 1 at 3PM with Live from the Collections: In and Out of Poetry. The program features readings by poets Lyn Lifshin, Elaine Terranova, Daniel Scott Snelson and will be followed by a roundtable discussion moderated by Matthew Kalasky, director of the Nicola Midnight St. Claire, a critical voice in Philadelphia. The poets will read their own works, and works from the Libraries’ archives and discuss the process and performance of poetry.

Catch us again at the Lantern Slide Salon, taking place 6PM on October 1 at the Wagner Free Institute of Science. The salon highlights the historic lantern slide collections of some of the region’s most significant cultural and educational institutions, including Temple University Libraries. Other participants: The Athenaeum of PhiladelphiaIndependence Seaport MuseumMorris ArboretumSwarthmore College Peace CollectionTemple University Special Collections and Research Centerthe University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and the Wagner Free Institute of Science.

Find out more about the initiative and programs at archivesmonthphilly.com

What is it about Walt…..

What is it about Walt Whitman that keeps us wondering? His intrigue goes so far beyond those iconic poems, like Leaves of Grass, that great work of American literature and innovation. He is a, poet, iconoclast, voice of democracy, voice of dissent, queer writer, and American celebrity.

On Thursday we’ll mark National Library Week and National Poetry month by pondering Whitman’s long-reaching legacy with David Haven Blake and Michael Robertson, two professors of English at the College of New Jersey. Katherine Henry, professor of English here at Temple, will ask questions and guide the conversation.

Both Haven Blake and Robertson consider not just Whitman’s poetry, but his cultural legacy, as well. The scholars are co-editors of Walt Whitman, Where the Future Becomes Present (University of Iowa Press, 2008). The book invigorates Whitman studies by garnering insights from a diverse group of writers and intellectuals. Writing from the perspectives of art history, political theory, creative writing, and literary criticism, the contributors place Whitman in the center of both world literature and American public life.

Blake is also the author of Walt Whitman and the Culture of American Celebrity (Yale University Press, 2006). Robertson is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships and author of Worshipping Walt: The Whitman Disciples (Princeton UP, 2008).

Join us for the conversation

Thursday, April 18, 3:30 pm, Paley Library Lecture Hall

 

WhitmanDisciples Whitman and the Culture of American Celebrity

Andrew Smith, historian of all things food and drink, to speak at Paley Library March 26

Andrew SmithAndrew Smith is one of the foremost experts and most prolific authors on the history of American food and beverage. On Tuesday, March 26 at 3:30 PM, he will be speaking at Paley library on one of his latest publications, Drinking History: 15 Turning Points in the Making of American Beverages (Columbia University Press).

Smith has penned books on hamburgers, potatoes, junk food, fast food, turkey, ketchup and more. He is the author of the comprehensive  Eating History: Thirty Turning Points in the Making of American Cuisine (Columbia University Press, 2008) and the Oxford Companion to American Food and Drink (Oxford University Press, 2007).

He was recently interviewed by CBS news about movie popcorn. Check out the story and then join us Tuesday to get the lowdown on American food and drink!

CHAT Series on the Digital Humanities Continues Thursday, March 7

On Thursday, March 7 the Center for the Humanities at Temple’s series on Digital Humanities, co-sponsored by Temple University Libraries, will continue at the CHAT lounge in Gladfelter Hall. Kathleen Fitzpatrick, professor of Media Studies at Pomona College and Director of Scholarly Communications at the MLA will discuss “The Humanities in and for the Digital Age.” Dr. Fitzpatrick will address how digital technologies have rapidly changed the landscape of scholarly publishing, and how they have equally changed the ways that scholars themselves engage with their work. This talk explores a few of those changes as they have begun to affect the humanities, including the new roles being played by scholarly societies in today’s communication environment.

Interested in urban planning, sustainability, real and imagined spaces? Join us 2/21 as scholar Miles Orvell and photographer Sandy Sorlien talk Main Streets

What is an American Main Street? Is it a memory or image that has been perpetuated through American writing and art? A real space within new urbanist town planning? Or is it a place where some are welcome and others are shunned? Perhaps it is all of the above.

Distinguished Temple professor Miles Orvell and photographer Sandy Sorlien will take on these questions, and more, at an interdisciplinary conversation on American Main Streets at Paley Lecture Hall on 2/21, 2:30 PM.

When asked about the importance of main streets to planning and sustainability, Sorlien, who has been advocating for walkable downtowns for the past decade, stated “the importance of the traditional Main Street is that it is the essential center of a walkable
village or urban neighborhood. You can’t have walkability without  useful destinations  (shops, offices, civic functions), and without  walkability the place depends on cars, which further damage walkability, at least the way we’ve designed cities for many decades.” She also adds that “It’s important to understand Main Streets as essential to great  cities, not just quaint little rural towns.  Philadelphia’s mixed-use  corridors knit our many neighborhoods together, which then enables  transit. It’s all connected.”

Her photographic practice reflects her interest in these spaces, and she has been photographing landscapes and townscapes since 1980. She has published her work in Fifty Houses: Images from the American Road (Johns Hopkins 2002), and is finishing a book about Main Streets in America with the working title The Heart of Town.

Dr. Miles Orvell, professor of English and American Studies here at Temple, is equally interested in main streets, and his innovative, interdisciplinary research approaches questions of space and the built environment through a number of theoretical, visual, and historiographic methods.

In the last five years, Orvell has focused his research on the cultural meaning of
place, and he has co-edited a collection of essays,Public Space and the Ideology of Place in American Culture (Rodopi, 2009). He is an editor of the University of Pennsylvania Press series, Architecture, Technology, Culture, and is co-editing
a volume in the series, Thinking Architecture, Technology, Culture, based on a
conference he helped organize in Munich.

His most recent book is The Death and Life of Main Street: Small Towns in American
Memory, Space, and Community
 (University of North Carolina Press, 2012), which
recovers the complex and contradictory cultural meanings of the small town at the
same time that it problematizes the icon of Main Street. He is presently working
on a book on photography, ruins, and contemporary culture, called “The Course of
Empire: American Photography and the Destructive Sublime.”

Join us to examine these real and imagined notions of American main streets with Miles Orvell and Sandy Sorlien. We hope to see you at Paley Library Lecture Hall on Thursday, February 21 at 2:30 PM to join in the conversation!

Deborah Willis and Barbara Krauthamer to Visit Temple, Discuss Envisioning Emancipation

Envisioning Emancipation, by Deborah Willis and Barbara Krauthamer and published by Temple University Press, is quickly gaining attention as an important and innovative text on the power of photography in the journey to emancipation. In this pioneering book, the authors have amassed 150 photographs—some never before published—from the antebellum days of the 1850s through the New Deal era of the 1930s. They vividly display the seismic impact of emancipation on African Americans born before and after the Proclamation, providing a perspective on freedom and slavery and a way to understand the photos as documents of engagement, action, struggle, and aspiration.

Press coverage has included extensive write ups by the New York Times Lens blog to an interview and photogallery on CNN.com. Among those to laud the book’s efforts are Thelma Golden, the chief curator and director of the Studio Museum of Harlem and reviewers at Publisher’s Weekly.

Krauthamer and Willis will be on campus for a book talk, signing and reception on Friday, February 8. The program takes place at 3PM in the Great Court of Mitten Hall (1931 N. Broad Street).

Spring “Beyond the Page” Series further explores the American Idea

The Libraries are now finalizing our spring public programming “Beyond the Page” series. Once again this semester’s talks, panels, lectures, and programs explore the “American Idea.” The series kicks off on Friday, February 8 at the Great Court in Mitten Hall with a book talk by Deborah Willis and Barbara Krauthamer on their recent publication, Envisioning Emancipation. Other programs include conversations on American main streets, American drinking traditions, and a special National Library Week program on Walt Whitman, American Icon. We will also have exhibitions on civil rights activist and Philadelphia hero, Father Paul Washington (at the Blockson Collection) and American Poetry (at Paley Library).

Here’s all of what we’ve got to offer this spring:

Spring 2013 Public Programs

  • Envisioning Emancipation: A Book Talk and Signing With Deb Willis and Barbara Krauthamer

February 8, 3:00 PM, Mitten Hall, Great Court, 1913 N. Broad Street

In their pioneering book, Envisioning Emancipation, renowned photographic historian Deborah Willis and historian of slavery Barbara Krauthamer have amassed 150 photographs—some never before published—from the antebellum days of the 1850s through the New Deal era of the 1930s. The authors vividly display the seismic impact of emancipation on African Americans born before and after the Proclamation, providing a perspective on freedom and slavery and a way to understand the photos as documents of engagement, action, struggle and aspiration. Envisioning Emancipation illustrates what freedom looked like for black Americans in the Civil War era. From photos of the enslaved on plantations and African American soldiers and camp workers in the Union Army to Juneteenth celebrations, slave reunions and portraits of black families and workers in the American South, the images in this book challenge perceptions of slavery. They show not only what the subjects emphasized about themselves but also the ways Americans of all colors and genders opposed slavery and marked its end. Filled with powerful images of lives too often ignored or erased from historical records, Envisioning Emancipationprovides a new perspective on American culture.

  •  On American Main Streets: A Conversation with Miles Orvell and Sandy Sorlien

February 21, 2:30 PM, Paley Library Lecture Hall 1210 Polett Walk

What is an American Main Street? Is it a memory or image that has been perpetuated through American writing and art? A real space within new urbanist town planning? Or is it a place where some are welcome and others are shunned? Perhaps it is all of the above. Join us to examine these real and imagined notions of American main streets with Miles Orvell and Sandy Sorlien. Orvell is the author of The Death and Life of Main Street: Small Towns in American Memory, Space, and Community (University of North Carolina Press 2012) and professor of English and American studies at Temple. In 2009, he received the Bode-Pearson Prize for lifetime achievement, awarded by the American Studies Association. Sorlien is the author of Fifty Houses: Images from the American Road (Johns Hopkins 2002), and is finishing a book about Main Streets in America with the working title The Heart of Town.

Annual Women’s History Program at the Blockson Collection

  • Women Activists in Philadelphia: From Civil Rights to Black Power

March 7, 3:00 PM, Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection, Sullivan Hall, 1330 Polett Walk

Celebrate Women’s History Month at the Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection’s annual program honoring women who have changed history. This year’s presenters and honorees include veterans of the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements, all of whom reside in Philadelphia. Join us as these women share their moving and powerful stories about their roles as activists.

  • Drinking History: How Beverages have Changed America

March 26, 3:30 PM, Paley Library Lecture Hall, 1210 Polett Walk What is American drink? Is it warmed-over traditional British beverages, such as tea and ale? Or is it versions of ethnic beverages brought by successive waves of immigrants—sangria, tequila, bubble tea? Or is it the fiercely marketed creations of America’s beverage industry—Kool-Aid, Snapple, Coors, Coca-Cola? Andrew F. Smith, author of the just released Drinking History: 15 Turning Points in the Making of American Beverages (Columbia University Press) will discuss how beverages have changed American history and how Americans have invented, adopted, modified, and commercialized tens of thousands of beverages. Involved in their creation and promotion were entrepreneurs and environmentalists, bartenders and bottlers, politicians and lobbyists, organized and unorganized criminals, German and Italian immigrants, advertisers and consumers, prohibitionists and medical professionals, and everyday Americans in love with their brew.

  • Walt Whitman: An American Icon

April 18, 3:30 PM, Paley Library Lecture Hall, 1210 Polett Walk

Walt Whitman’s legacy—iconoclast, celebrity, and the father of American poetry—is unparalleled in its influence on American writing and culture. Join David Haven Blake and Michael Robertson, professors of English at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) and co-editors of Walt Whitman, Where the Future Becomes Present to discuss the impact that Whitman has had on American culture—an impact that reaches far beyond his influence on poetry. Blake is also the chair of the English Department at TCNJ, and author of Walt Whitman and the Culture of American Celebrity. Robertson is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships and author of the award-winning book Worshipping Walt: The Whitman Disciples (Princeton UP, 2008). This program will be moderated by Katherine Henry, associate professor of English at Temple.

This program takes place during National Library Week. Join us, and celebrate Temple’s Libraries!

  • Annual Library Prize for Undergraduate Research and Library Prize for Undergraduate Research on Sustainability and the Environment Awards Ceremony

May 2, 4:00 PM, Paley Library Lecture Hall

Please join us as we celebrate the best in undergraduate research at the annual awards ceremony for Library Prizes. This year’s winners will present their research, and afterwards, we will celebrate their tremendous accomplishments. Join us to finish the semester with our signature program at Paley Library.

  • Annual Juneteenth Celebration: Honoring Father Paul Washington Day

June 19, 3:00 PM, Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection, Sullivan Hall, 1330 Polett Walk

Join us to celebrate the life and legacy of Father Paul Washington on Juneteenth, the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.  Father Washington, the rector of the Church of the Advocate in North Philadelphia from 1962 until he accepted emeritus status in 1987, is part of the legacy of resistance and perseverance symbolized in the history Juneteenth.  Washington was a consistent voice in defense of the disenfranchised. He served on the city’s Human Relations Commission for seven years beginning in 1964, opened his church to the first Black Power Convention in 1968, ordained 11 women to the Episcopalian priesthood against the standard rules of the church in 1974 and has been called “he high priest of the progressive movement in Philadelphia.”

 

Upcoming and Ongoing Programs

  • Chat in the Stacks

The Libraries and the Faculty Senate Committee on the Status of Faculty of Color continue to host an engaging series of panels on timely topics with faculty from across the university. Join us at 2:30 PM on March 28 to learn about the history of African American women in the media. A second spring chat will be scheduled soon.

  • Temple Book Club

Join us the Temple Book Club returns this spring. On March 6 at noon we will discuss this year’s One Book, One Philadelphia selection, The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka. This PEN/Faulkner Award Winner and National Book Award finalist tells the tragic story of the Japanese “picture brides” who travelled from Japan to San Francisco in the 1990s. Now in its 11th year, the One Book, One Philadelphia initiative promotes reading, literacy and libraries, encouraging the entire greater Philadelphia area to come together through a single book. On April 3rd,again at noon, the Book Club will discuss National Book Award Winner Tracy Kidder’s Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Could Cure the World

 

Co-Sponsored Programs

The Libraries support a number of additional lectures, forums, and symposia across campus every semester, helping to build dialogues across campus.

 Beginning Design: A National Conference

  • Keynote Lecture with Brian MacKay-Lyons

Saturday, April 13, Alter Hall, Room 31

Beginning Design conference keynote speaker Brian MacKay-Lyons was born and raised in the Arcadia village of Novia Scotia. After receiving his BA from the Technical University of Novia Scotia and his Master of Architecture and Urban Design from UCLA, MacKay-Lyons returned to Novia Scotia to make a contribution to place where his Arcadian ancestors had lived for over 400 years. Since then, he has built an international reputation for design excellence, confirmed by 67 awards, including six Canadian Architect Awards.  His work has been published in 164 books, journals, and monographs including The Phaidon Atlas of Contemporary World Architecture.

  •  “Dance the Orange”: A cross-disciplinary symposium on the intersections of Visual Art, Music, and Dance

Saturday, April 20, Conwell Dance Theater, Temple University 

This symposium will present cross-disciplinary conversations and performances coinciding with an exhibition of the works of Charles Searles (1937-2004), an influential yet understudied African American artist who practiced in Philadelphia and New York. A number of dancers, artists, musicians, and historians will participate. This program is organized by Prof. Susanna Gold, Department of Art History, Tyler School of Art.

 

ADDITIONAL PARTNERSHIP PROGRAMS

—The Libraries and Temple Contemporary continue their partnership, presenting programs that creatively re-imagine the social function of art through questions of local relevance and international significance. This spring we will co-sponsor a February 7 program with poet Jen Bervin and other events throughout the season.

—The Libraries support The Center for the Humanities at Temple University’s Digital Humanities in Theory series. Upcoming speakers include John Palfrey of Harvard University (February 6), Kathleen Fitzpatrick of Pomona College (March 7), and William Noel of the University of Pennsylvania (April 25). All programs take place in the CHAT Lounge on the 10th Floor of Gladfelter Hall.

 

Spring 2013 Exhibitions

At Paley Library

  • Some American Poetry

This spring the Special Collections Research Center explores 20th century alternative and small press American poetry as told through the many archival and rare book collections in its holdings. This journey through American verse begins with Philadelphia-region forefathers Walt Whitman and Edgar Allen Poe.  Highlighting the works of Lyn Lishfin, the trailblazer known as the “Queen of the Small Presses;” Hawaiian Tony Quagliano, author of such sharp-tongued missives on language such as Semiotic Self-Deconstruction and Get Out of Poetry by Sundown; New York Poet’s Cooperative member John Burnette Payne; and Philadelphia-native-turned-West-Coast-vanguard Dottie Grossman, the exhibition will also feature regional poets and editors Louis McKee, Joe Farley, Jessie Sampler, and Robert Abrahams.

At the Blockson Collection

  • The Legacy Father Paul Washington

Father Paul Washington was a champion for the oppressed.  This exhibition features items from Father Paul Washington’s collection housed in the Blockson Collection that chronicle his legacy.

 

11/29 Program at Paley Library Focuses on Barnes Foundation, Wagner Free Institute of Science

Take a visit to Paley Library Lecture Hall at 4PM on Thursday, November 29, and join in the conversation on The American Idea of Museums.

This talk will examine the history of American museums and the way that two local institutions, the Barnes Foundation and the Wagner Free Institute of Science, both carry on and move forward the purpose and function of contemporary museums.

Panel speakers are The Ohio State University’s Steven Conn, Susan Glassman of the Wagner Free Institute of Science in Philadelphia and the Barnes Foundation’s Blake Bradford. This program will be moderated by Kenneth Finkel, distinguished lecturer in the Department of American Studies.

11/8 Program on Public Design to Feature Critics, Journalists and Designers including Inquirer’s Inga Saffron

The American Idea of Public Design: The Street as Place

November 8, 3:30 PM, Paley Library Lecture Hall

Please join us as journalists, critics and designers examine The American Idea of Public Design.

Panelists include Inga Saffron, architecture critic for the Philadelphia Inquirer; Hilary Jay, founder of DesignPhiladelphia and critic, curator and former design journalist for the Inquirer Sunday Magazine; Diana Lind, Editor in Chief of the Next American City; and designer and architect, Bryan Hanes.

The American Idea of Public Design: The Street as Place, co-presented by Temple University Libraries and DesignPhiladelphia in partnership with The University of the Arts, will explore design at street level. How do objects on the street – the props that surround us as we come, go, and linger – affect the quality of our experience and the livability of the city?

Join us as we rethink everything from the design and amenities of a new park to the functionality of public trashcans. We’ll consider street trees and sidewalk planters, bus shelters, public seating, newspaper stands, the facades of buildings and storefronts of businesses, crosswalks, streetlights, and more. The program will feature Bryan Hanes, Landscape Architect and Urban Designer; Diana Lind, Executive Director and Editor in Chief of Next American City; and Inga Saffron, Architecture Critic at The Philadelphia Inquirer. Hilary Jay, Founding Director of DesignPhiladelphia, will moderate.

The discussion is co-presented by Temple University Libraries and DesignPhiladelphia, part of Temple’s Beyond the Page series shaped around the theme, “American Idea.”

Be Part of the Conversation as Temple University Libraries and the Institute for Public Affairs Continue to Talk Politics

The national election is just one week away, and the Libraries and Temple’s Institute for Public Affairs continue to bring you conversations on politics.

Get a glimpse of political trends overseas and learn about political parties’ policy changes in response to public opinion shifts and the consequences of these policy shifts on public opinion, election outcomes, cabinet formation and duration, and party leadership survival in both Western and Eastern and Central European democracies in a talk today, November 7, at noon in 1221 Anderson Hall. This talk is sponsored by the Institute for Public Affairs and features Zeynep Somer-Topcu of Vanderbilt University.

Then, tomorrow, at 2:30 PM in Paley Library Lecture Hall, our panel addresses racial politics in our national politics. This installment of Chat in the Stacks: Race in the Race, will feature Dr. David Waldstreicher (History), Dr. Wilbur Jenkins, (History), Sophia Sanders, (Art History) and Philadelphia attorney Michael Coard along with Micah Kleit of the Temple University Press. As always, our host will be Dr. Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon, professor of theater.