October 16, 2017

Cuba, Then & Now | Collection Development

Just 90 miles off the coast of Florida, Cuba has always held a complicated place in the history of the United States. Check out these 29 titles for your Caribbean collection.

A Cuban Book Trip: Reading Flourishes at the Havana Book Fair

The captivating country of Cuba has welcomed readers, authors, publishers, and librarians to the Havana International Book Fair since 1982. Organized by the Ministry of Culture and the Cuban Book Institute, this standout cultural extravaganza, which originated as part of a government campaign to boost literacy on the island, celebrated its 26th anniversary this past February with a family-oriented festival dedicated to the pleasures of reading under the motto, “To read is to grow.”

Ann Marie Stock, William & Mary Libraries’ Inaugural Faculty Scholar

At the beginning of the 2016 academic year Ann Marie Stock, professor of Hispanic studies and film and media studies at the College of William & Mary (W&M), Williamsburg, VA, stepped into her new role as the inaugural W&M Libraries faculty scholar. Stock will be embedded in the library—working out of a “gorgeous” renovated former storage room across from the Reeder Media Center— to collaborate and forge new alliances with students, faculty, and librarians.

CUNY Librarians in Cuba | Peer to Peer Review

On January 15, a team of bold, innovative librarians from the City University of New York (CUNY) set out to do what many librarians in the United States have not: travel to Cuba for a week-long expedition of cultural, professional, and informational exchange. I was among those chosen for the trip. The mission was exhilarating as it was challenging.

Why Internet Searches Are Not Enough | Peer to Peer Review

Historians are used to sleuthing. Obtaining verifiable sources is difficult; original documents may be unavailable. With computer searching methods some of the detective work has eased up, at least superficially. However search engines depend on databases that can be parsed and queried digitally. Whatever is not in these databases is unreachable except in person. Great strides have been made thanks to the Internet, and online techniques are useful tools, but their help is always limited.

The search for Rodríguez’s “Chinese Poem” is a case study in how, despite strong efforts and advanced technological approaches, searches cannot be guaranteed to succeed.