Monday, September 12, 2011
Friday, July 1, 2011
The day before (6/23) SALALM and other library groups/associations participated in the 2011 Spectrum Institute Professional Options Fair organized by ALA's Diversity Office and sponsored by OCLC Inclusion Initiative. The event hosted more than 100 current MLS students from Library Schools all over the country. Hortensia Calvo and I talked to about 20 of these Spectrum Scholars who saw the words "Latin America" at our table.
Our collective presence at the exhibit hall made possible a visit to the aisle hosting several library schools. Hortensia and I met several of the representatives and gave them informational handouts about SALALM, ALZAR and ISIS. Some knew we existed, and for others we were a new group on their radar screen. SALALM members at institutions with MLIS program are encouraged to ensure not only that our informational materials are visible to students but to "insinuate" ourselves as Latin American Studies Librarianship ambassadors to any job fair events for information professionals.
The conference also provided opportunities to learn about new products. Hortensia, Sean Knwolton and I were at a presentation where Oxford Bibliographies Online showcased their upcoming Latin American Studies file. I asked about pricing models and noted that the traditional formula of all campus FTE was not applicable for a product that would have a much more reduced number of users. A few days earlier I had expressed that same concern to another vendor of Spanish language ebooks. This issue was also raised at an ebook panel at Philadelphia's SALALM conference. Vendors appear to understand that a different pricing model is needed and it's really up to us to come up with a well documented alternative.
Thanks to all those who volunteered: Myra Appel, Roberto Delgadillo, Tony Harvell, Deb Raftus, John Wright, Sean Knowlton, Denise Stuempfle, Cecilia Sercán, and Michael Scott. Very special thanks to Hortensia Calvo and Carol Avila from SALALM's Executive Secretariat who covered much of the three days of the exhibit.
Thursday, June 2, 2011
See you next year!
Jesus Alonso Regalado
Beyond the Stone
Becoming Part of Your Students' Community
Monday, May 30, 2011
This morning at the opening ceremony for SALALM's 56th annual conference Molly Molloy, librarian at New Mexico State University, was honored with the 2011 José Toribio Medina Award. The award recognizes Molly's outstanding work with the Frontera-List.
Victor Federico Torres, chair of the committee, noted that the list "has been hailed as the most comprehensive, up-to-date source of narco-related violence on the U.S.-Mexico Border" and used widely by congressional staff, US and Mexican human rights groups and many other Border observers. Torres added, "this electronic resource fills a much needed information gap on a subject of both scholarly research and binational concerns."
Molly Molloy is well known, not only as a librarian committed to her immediate user constituency but also as human rights activist on Border issues. Her work has been featured by the Wall Street Journal, In These Times, and National Public Radio.
¡Felicidades! Un honor muy merecido.
Monday, May 16, 2011
The posters included in this digital project were created by a wide variety of social activists, non-governmental organizations, government agencies, political parties, and other types of organizations across Latin America, in order to publicize their views, positions, agendas, policies, events, and services. Even though posters produced in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico, and Venezuela are the most abundant among the more than two thousand currently available in the site, almost every country in the region is represented. In terms of topics, some of the best represented are human rights, elections, gender issues, indigenous issues, labor, ecology and environmental issues, development, public health, and education.
The Latin American Posters Collection is a component of the larger collection of Latin American ephemera that Princeton University Library has developed since the 1970s.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
The 24th Feria International del Libro de Bogotá is now in full swing. The first two days are reserved for professionals—editors, distributors, and, for the past three years, librarians. This post records a view of the first day of the Fair.
Bogotá offers the standard suite of events—book signings, author talks, workshops—along with the publishers’ exhibits. This year’s meeting added a new twist. The inaugural session provided a platform for what may be the early stage of rapprochement between Colombia and Ecuador, whose relations have been strained since Colombia’s cross-border raid into FARC installations just inside the Ecuadorian border three years ago. Perhaps historians will see the inaugural session of the Feria as bibliographic diplomacy, in a nod to the ping pong diplomacy which launched a change in US-Chinese relations in the 1970s.
Presidents (each referred to the other as “excelentisimo presidente”) Rafael Correa of Ecuador and Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia offered remarks appropriate for the stage they shared. Correa spoke first, following a glossy, up-beat video production, “Ecuador Está Viva.” His remarks stressed the shared history of what was once one republic, at one point encouraging Colombians to think of his country as their “sur” and Ecuadorians to consider Colombia their “norte.” The loudest applause followed his remarks on economic development that emphasizes ecological preservation.
If Correa stressed convergence, Santos spoke much more to culture. He used the podium to stress to this largely Colombian audience that his administration had tripled the cultural outlays of his predecessor. He also mentioned his proposal for additional economic stimulus aimed at book production. Santos thanked Correa for bringing works of Ecuadorian literature to his attention and promised to read his counterpart’s Ecuador: de Banana Republic a no República, officially released at the Fair. While Santos did not ignore Correa’s overtures to seek commonalities, the nub of his message was “lectura=libertad,” stressing the importance of education as a tide that raises all boats.
OK, but no one thought much of the ping pong matches at the time.
Sunday, April 17, 2011
Nettie Lee Benson should have met the Mexican writer Carlos Monsiváis. Maybe she did; I don’t know. But a visit to the Museo del Estanquillo in Mexico City makes it clear that they shared a sense of esthetics and documentation that shaped important aspects of their lives.
Monsiváis’ voracious collecting appetite included all types of Mexican materials. The current exhibit at the Estanquillo, like so many in Mexico these days, recalls events of 1910, but in this case the great celebration sponsored by the Diaz regime, rather than the Revolution that would soon chase Don Porfirio from power. And visiting it inspires a sense of déjà vu in anyone familiar with Nettie Lee’s legacy and the objects now on display in the Benson Collection’s Reading Room. Vitrine after vitrine at the museum hold programs from the celebration, including events as varied as the return of martyred revolutionary hero Jose de Morelos’ uniform by the Spanish ambassador—who knew they had it a century on?—and the better known convening of the International Congress of Americanists in Mexico City and Teotihuacan. Monsiváis collected large and small— life-sized bronze busts, folio albums commemorating the Diaz regime’s accomplishments, invitations issued to the dozens of official events, menus from banquets, commemorative cigar wrappers, telegrammed regrets (the Bulgarians couldn’t make it).
If Carlos and Nettie Lee were acquainted, he must have been pleased to learn that her library was to be honored with the Medalla de 1808, presented the week of his death in Mexico City. And even if they never met, Nettie Lee would surely have known of their kindred passions.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Now for a few updates…
First and foremost, I want to welcome Peter Johnson to his new role as SALALM Treasurer. As I mentioned in my announcement on LALA-L, Peter brings extensive experience with the Finance committee and Investment Working Group. As a long-time SALALM member, Peter also has an intimate understanding of the organization. SALALM is facing significant challenges in the coming years. I feel confident that Peter is well-positioned to lead SALALM in mattes of finance.
Hard to believe, but SALALM LVI is just around the corner! I am about the program, which is coming together nicely. The theme appears to have struck a chord not only amongst SALALMistas, but also with colleagues in Latin America. I received and accepted many interesting paper and panel proposals. Soon Roberto Delgadillo and I will be calling for moderators and rapporteurs. Please consider participating in one or other capacity.
Some of you have asked about the keynote speaker. It is a pleasure to announce that Peter Kornbluh will be the SALALM LVI keynote speaker. Peter is Senior Analyst and Director of the National Security Archive’s Cuba and Chile Documentation Projects. Peter will share his perspective and experience in documenting human rights at the Archive. In turn, Peter expressed interest in talking with SALALMistas about the archive and its uses in research in instruction. Therefore, I have also arranged a session on Monday afternoon for a conversation with Peter.
SALALM LVI will also host a meeting of GPLASC: the Greater Philadelphia Latin American Studies Consortium (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148270935213286). GPLASC is a co-sponsor of SALALM LVI and hopes to connect with librarians and libreros alike.
Lastly, to follow up on the many E-SALALM initiatives, I scheduled an update on Sunday, May 29th. I hope you will join us to learn about proposed changes to the SALALM Newsletter and web site; recommendations for intra-SALALM communication and routing functions and an update on the initiative to produce SALALM sponsored webinars.Nerea Llamas, University of Michigan
Sunday, February 20, 2011
If you just want a quick, low maintenance online presence, the easiest way to get started is to sign up for a profile on a professional social networking site. Less intrusive than Facebook, these sites are ranked highly in search engines and only show snippets of information in search engine results. Linked In is the easiest, but academia.edu is growing in popularity. Google profiles is another site which enables you to claim your name and control how you appear in Google. ClaimID is one more site which allows you to have more control over your name.
But I already have 3 social network profiles, a blog and a twitter feed! A more detailed solution, which is equally easy to create, is a personal portfolio or webpage to start promoting you, your projects and your achievements. Web 2.0 personal portfolios are easy to keep up to date, involve no knowledge of html,
are hosted for free and you can link in your social media sites too. Weebly is a very easy to use drag and drop site which has a lot of customization options. Flavors.me is a slightly trendier personal portfolio site which encourages you to link your social networking personas into one place. Finally, if you can get past the narcissistic title, about.me provides an equally new and hip way to manage your online presence.
If you prefer html, have access to server space or want to make a more robust or in depth personal portfolio, there are a bunch of free templates available. Wordpress.org is the version of the popular blogging software that can be used to create a webpage. Alternatively, do a search for “free web templates” to get suggestions for another easy way to create a webpage; Andreas Viklund has some cool ones.
Finally, there are some tools to track how you are represented on the web. Google Alerts is well known for tracking phrases or keywords, while Social Mention does the same for social media. You can set up searches in Twitter for any keyword, while TweetBeep claims to be the Google Alerts for Twitter.
And if this is all too typical millennial self-centered for you, all these resources would also work for groups and projects as well as people.
So go ahead, make a profile and reclaim your online identity! And in the meantime watch out for my novel that features a steamy romance between a tennis pro and a medical librarian...
University of Colorado at Boulder
Alison.Hicks @ Colorado.EDU
Sunday, February 13, 2011
But there I was, at the Codex Book Fair, already on its second day of workshops and meetings, ready to hear about fine printing in Mexico from Juan Nicanor Pascoe, perhaps the best-known Mexican master printer. He not only (re)claimed his Mexican heritage, but delighted a SRO audience on how he arrived at his trade, via Iowa, finally settling at his current locus amoemus,(Tacámbaro) in rural Michoacan.
A few days later on an unexpected visit to the Stanford campus, Pascoe told of his other talent: music, “I am better known among musicians,” having just returned from an encuentro musical veracruzano. Pascoe is no stranger to SALAMistas, just ask Theresa Salazar (UC-Berkeley-Bancroft), Teresa Chapa (UNC-Chapel Hill) and Nerea Llamas (Michigan), who visited his Taller Martin Pescador. The name of the press was chosen by Roberto Bolaño, a yet unknown young Chilean writer who led a group of vagabond poets, infrarealistas, and for whom Pascoe published an early poetry chapbook of 225 copies entitled: Reinventar el amor.
In this milieu of fine presses, Latin America was well represented, by Pascoe and his young partner Artemio Rodriguez and by others familiar to SALALM: Colombia’s Arte dos Grafico and California’s Catherine Docter from Libros San Cristobal, probably one of the best kept secrets in the region.
Following the book arts festival came the yearly pilgrimage for many of the same book lovers/collectors to the 44th International California Antiquarian Book Fair. As with many other things, both New York and California claim to have the best one in North America. Unlike previous years, there seemed to be fewer attendees, a sign of the dire economic times. Even so, dealers brought out their best rare/unique titles, like Gustave Doré’s Corrida de toros. At $28,000, the six prints were best admired from afar. I even felt guilty taking the profusely illustrated catalogue from the London dealer. For the less affluent, $11,000 could have been just fine for that masterpiece of 19th century Mexican cartography: Atlas Pintoresco e Histórico de los Estados Unidos Mexicanos.
There were also items a precios módicos, like Sanctus sonorensis, a prayer-like visual text honoring the undocumented immigrants who die in the Sonoran desert.
For rare Latinamericana visits to: Bray Books, Libros Latinos and Plaza Books were a must, along with a stop at a Barcelona dealer which had brought some first editions of Lorca, Neruda, and Miguel Angel Asturias, among others. You could even find a signed grabado by the great Mexican muralist Orozco. It turned out to be false, but when I went to see it, the price was still listed over $1000.
At the end of the weekend fest, the last minute crowds seemed to have arrived. I left, 90 minutes before closing, amused at some of the clever names: Any Amount of Books, Back of Beyond Books, Between the Covers, Books of Wonder, By the Book, Carpe Diem, First Folio, Literary Lion, Lost Horizon, Sanctuary Books, and Serendipity, etc.
I kept hoping to find the dealer from whom I bought a few Mexican Revolution postcards last year. How can I forget that mujer valiente from 100 years ago, the one who defied the often mistranslation of soldadera as camp follower. I wouldn’t dare call her that, would you?
Adan Griego (Stanford), Daniel J. Slive (Southern Methodist) and Juan Nicanor Pascoe arguing in front of the Libros Latinos booth and caught off guard by Roberto Trujillo's i-phone camera.
1) Codex Espangliensis From Columbus to the Border Patrol by Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Enrique Chagoya and Felicia Rice. (trade edition published by City Lights Books, 2000). Moving Parts Press published the limited edition.
2) Juan Nicanor Pascoe and Artemio Rodriguez at a 2009 event featureing their collaborative book Tacámbaro (on display at Codex 2011). It is a fully illustrated, handprinted artist book featuring Jose Ruben Romero's collection of poems and contains 72 black & white blockprints by Rodriguez.
Monday, January 31, 2011
Just back from an all too short break, I am diving back into conference planning. SALALM LVI is just 4 months away! To kick off the year right, I took a brief trip to Philadelphia last week, site of the upcoming SALALM LVI Annual Meeting. I spent 3 fabulous days in Philadelphia with Joe Holub and David Murray. Before I move on the details, I want to thank Joe and David for their hospitality during my visit. Along with conference planning, I was treated to an extensive tour of Philadelphia’s many and varied neighborhoods, its historical sites and, of course, a sample of its fabulous cuisine!
While in Philadelphia, I stayed at the Radisson-Plaza Warwick hotel, site of our meeting. The ‘Warwick’ is a beautiful historic hotel in the Rittenhouse Square area of Philadelphia. Rooms at the Warwick are comfortable with all of the amenities you would expect in a modern hotel, including complimentary high speed, wireless internet. For convenience, there are 3 options for dining within the Warwick, The Coffee Bar, Tavern 17 and the Prime Rib Restaurant (dinner only). Just two blocks from Rittenhouse Square itself, the hotel is surrounded by many restaurants and shops and within walking distance to many Philadelphia’s historic sites. I know you will find many ways to enjoy yourselves between meetings and panels. Joe and David are already hard at work on creating guides to the best spots.
On the first day of my visit, I enjoyed a walk to the Reading Terminal Market with Joe. On the way, he suggested we stop by the historic Wanamaker’s building, now a Macy’s. Built in 1910 by Daniel H. Burnham, this Florentine style building features granite walls, the St. Louis World’s Fair pipe organ and a statue of bronze eagle. Even if you are not a fan of department stores, Macy’s, located in Center City on the corner of Juniper and Market Streets, is a must-see. After Macy’s, we headed straight for the Market. Along with fresh meats, fish, cheeses and baked goods, the Reading Terminal Market includes many restaurants. Joe and I opted for lunch at a stand serving Mexican food, which did not disappoint. After lunch, we headed back to the Warwick, where Samantha Boyle, our contact at the hotel, gave us a tour of the meeting rooms and exhibit space. SALALM will occupy rooms on both the Mezzanine and Executive Conference levels. The Mezzanine, where registration will be located, is an airy, open space which SALALM members can use to gather between meetings. Day one finished with a delicious dinner in China Town.
Day two of my visit was dedicated to planning. Following lunch a local campus eatery, David, Joe and I met at the University of Pennsylvania’s Van Pelt Library. We spent the afternoon updating the conference web site and editing registration forms. We also talked at length about options for both the libreros and host receptions. For now I can share that the libreros reception will be held at the newly renovated Baptist Temple on the campus of Temple University. A Romanesque church, the Baptist Temple is now the Temple Performing Arts Center. Our second, host reception will be held at the Anne & Jerome Fischer Fine Arts Library on the University of Pennsylvania campus. Though both campuses are relatively nearby, Joe and David are arranging transportation for attendees. After an afternoon of planning, David continued my tour of Philadelphia with a drive through North Philadelphia. We passed through the Temple campus and headed Northwest for dinner and dessert in Chestnut Hill, a beautiful, residential neighborhood.
On my last morning, Joe and I visited the Eyes Gallery in South Philadelphia. This hybrid shop, art gallery contains an extensive collection of Latin American folk art. Julia Zagar, the gallery’s owner, graciously showed us around the location’s three jam-packed floors. The Eyes Gallery was a wonderful way to wrap-up my visit. This is definitely a must-see for SALALMistas .
After this short visit to Philadelphia, I am more excited than ever about our upcoming meeting! I know you are anxiously awaiting your conference invitations. I expect that you will have received them by the time this message is published (or soon after). The SALALM LVI web site is already available at http://guides.temple.edu/SALALM_LVI. Thanks to David Murrary for designing and populating the site. Along with the requisite registration forms and hotel reservation instructions, you will also find a preliminary schedule (coming soon) and links to articles about Philadelphia. Please note the registration deadline is March 25, 2011. And, if you haven’t submitted your paper or panel proposal yet, there is still time!
Until next time…
Nerea A. Llamas
University of Michigan
Warm greetings from Michigan!
Hard to believe that it is mid-November and the holiday season is just beginning. Next week is Thanksgiving when many of us in the U.S. will indulge in our favorite foods and traditions. For me Thanksgiving is also prelude to the Feria Internacional del Libro in Guadalajara. I am looking forward to seeing many of you there. But before I began packing, here are some updates from the SALALM presidency…
Planning for SALALM LVI in Philadelphia is well underway. By now you will have seen the conference announcement. I encourage you to participate by submitting a paper or panel proposal. I also ask that you share the conference announcement widely. One of my hopes is that we will approach the topic of memory and human rights archives from many perspectives, so I welcome proposals from SALALMistas and non-SALALMistas alike.
Let me also remind you that SALALM is once again sponsoring two types of travel grants, the ENLACE Travel Awards and the Presidential Travel Fellowship. If you are interested in applying or know of someone who is, please visit http://www.salalm.org/conference/enlace.html and http://www.salalm.org/conference/presidentialtravel.html for more details.
Joe Holub and David Murray have been busy with local arrangements in Philadelphia. Currently, they are designing the conference web site, which will launch in the coming weeks. Joe and David have also asked me to visit in January to catch up on their activities and see the conference site for myself. I can’t wait! Look for my report in February.
From my previous message, you know that the e-SALALM initiative is gaining steam. The e-SALALM Ad-hoc committee is already hard at work on their charge. Meanwhile, the membership of the SALALM Communications Committee was also finalized. I am pleased to share that the committee consists of: SALALM Website Manager: Melissa Gasparotto; SALALM Website Content Editor: Daisy Domínguez, chair; LALA-L Moderator: Gayle Williams; SALALM Social Media Coordinator: Alison Hicks; Membership Committee Liaison: Orchid Mazurkiewicz. While the SALALM Communications Committee’s on-going charge is “to coordinate the promotion and dissemination of information related to SALALM news, events, activities, members, and initiatives …,” this year will be devoted in large part to transforming the SALALM Newsletter.
Along with these two working groups, a third, the Webinar Pilot Project Working Group, was also formed by popular demand. This working group is the result of a discussion amongst several SALALM members about how to provide virtual training or workshops, particularly to non-SALALM members. The group, whose members are Anne Barnhart, Adan Griego, Darlene Hull, Sean Knowlton, Jana Krentz, Carmen Yasmina Lopez and Orchid Mazurkiewicz (chair), will pilot a SALALM webinar project during the 2010-2011 year. As part of their charge, this group will investigate hardware & software needs, cost, audience and content and then host a webinar. Webinars are an exciting prospect for SALALM as they can be cost effective ways of delivering instruction and at the same time publicizing SALALM activities. Stay tuned for more news about this pilot project.
As in previous years, a group of SALALMistas will attend the Feria Internacional del Libro (FIL) in Guadalajara, Mexico. Thanks to the Free Pass Program, sponsored by the American Library Association and FIL, many of us have attended regularly over the last several years. This year, along with participating in the FIL orientation session, SALALM is also sponsoring a book donation drive. SALALMistas attending FIL are encouraged to donate academic books to AMIGOS: Red de Instituciones Mexicanas para la Cooperación Bibliotecaria. Books should be university press titles on topics related to the United States or Latin America. For those not travelling to Guadalajara, I encourage you to consider mailing your donations (contact Adán Griego, email@example.com, for instructions). During the economic downturn Mexican academic libraries have reduced their spending on US university press books. Any titles you can provide will be appreciated.
Wishing you all the happiest of holidays!
Nerea A. Llamas
University of Michigan
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Please let us know of any new titles using the form available on the Serials Webpage
Enter as much information about the journal that you can find (eg title, place of publication, web address, ISSN)
You can also send new titles directly to Ruby Gutiérrez (rgutierr @ ucla.edu) or Alison Hicks (Alison.Hicks @ colorado.edu)
A listing of new journal titles will be archived on the new serials archive webpage: and an announcement that a list is ready will be sent to LALA-L.
Please let us know if you have any questions!
Alison and Ruby
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
To recap, instruction 2.0 embraces the changes in the way that we communicate and interact. How has student learning changed and how can libraries adapt to this? Randy Bass is a key researcher of 2.0 pedagogy who set up the Visible Knowledge Project to study learning in higher education. Through these studies, he discovered that student learning today was adaptive, embodied and socially situated. Taking this as a basis, what does this mean in a library instruction context?
Realistic or adaptive instruction enables students to learn new skills that can be transferred outside of the original context. This means that instead of teaching the intricacies of a particular database, students ideally learn lifelong skills that form the backbone of information literacy. An example would be learning evaluation skills. As realistic instruction, adaptive teaching also connects students with the information realities and the academic conversation around them, emphasising that learning, information literacy and academic research do not occur in a vacuum. An example of this is Anne Barnhart's class, which asked students to use their information literacy training to buy material for the library in their subject area, an activity that is useful, practical and transferable.
Embodied learning means recognizing that many different elements affect student learning. This is more than looking at learning styles though- it also shows how the affective (emotions), prior knowledge and motivation all affect learning. It sounds kind of hippy-chic, but Bass' research showed that it is not just cognition or the mental process that affects how we learn. Personal experience or the creativity involved in using non traditional media helps connect students to new concepts. An example of this would be using a variety of ways to enable learning, for example student creation of a video tutorial using screencasting software in order to supplement and deepen student understanding of a concept.
Finally, instruction 2.0 recognizes that learning is often socially situated and that students learn from their peers in communities of practice or learning communities. This means that we need to incorporate different structures into the design of our classes that facilitate student-peer conversations, as well as student-teacher conversations. An example of this would be asking small groups of students to create an evaluation schema collaboratively, which would then be shared with the rest of the class. Within the small groups, students can share prior experiences and knowledge to cement their understanding of the research process. Socially situated learning needn’t always be about the students either. Working with faculty to create a common vision of learning outcomes is also a form of socially situated learning, where the learning community is formed by librarians and teaching faculty. An example of this is Suzanne Schadl's “guerilla” instruction, where she has incorporated multiple short instruction sessions into a semester long class. Even SALALM is a learning community- one of the original aims of La Cuna was to expand our own socially situated learning and foster online peer learning opportunities.
Bass’ three observations of learning fall neatly into the 5 Cs that characterize Web 2.0; creativity, conversation, community and collaboration. The final C is control. For instruction 2.0 to really work, librarians need to give up control so that the class is driven by student needs and dialog, rather than what the librarian assumes the students know or need to know. Personally, I think this is the hardest and scariest part, but it is vital in order for library instruction to maintain and to increase its relevancy in the 2.0 world.
University of Colorado, Boulder
alison.hicks @ colorado.edu