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Keeping you up to date with Library teaching and outreach activities.

In this issue, we bring you four articles from across the Dartmouth libraries. First, learn about a current exhibit installed in Berry Library curated by Matika Wilbur, entitled "Changing the Way We See Native America." Next, for those who could not attend the opening reception and artist talk in May, a reflection on Matika's "Learning From Indigenous Vision and Voice" presentation offers readers a glimpse into the complicated Indigenous experience as expressed in the artist's photography. Then, learn more about the upcoming "Enduring Fellowship" exhibit, which is the third installation in the Library's 250th exhibition series. Finally, we end this volume of the library teaching Quarterly with an article written by Caitlin Birch focusing on the recent SpeakOut oral history project. Please enjoy!

Changing the Way We See Native America:  Photography and Matika Wilbur’s Project 562 by Wendel Cox

Recently, the exhibit cases on Berry Main Street have been host to a powerful set of images from Matika Wilbur’s Project 562, a vast, multi-year endeavor to depict contemporary Indigenous peoples of the federally-recognized tribes of the United States. Wilbur, a photographer from the Swinomish and Tulalip Tribes, selected photographs especially for display at Dartmouth, including images of several individuals from New England tribes such as the Mashpee Wampanoag, Aquinnah Wampanoag, and Micmac. Like the images themselves, accompanying texts foreground the voices of Wilbur’s Indigenous subjects. Wilbur’s project is a profound challenge to the commonplace depiction of Indigenous people over centuries, which have mainly reproduced the views and needs of the project of settler colonialism and presented Indigenous people as timeless, now absent, and almost entirely silent. Such representations have proved extraordinarily durable and are implicated in the erasure of Indigenous peoples from their land and our collective histories.

"Changing the Way We See native America" runs on Berry Main Street from April 1 to June 30, 2019.

Note: As Wilbur acknowledged, her project cannot – nor should not – document every federally-recognized tribe. At the same time, the project’s scope has grown since its inception, both as a result of ongoing federal recognition of tribes and her decision to include peoples without federal recognition. At this time, there are 573 federally-recognized tribes in the United States, dozens of state-recognized tribes, and many, many more peoples as yet without federal or state recognition.

Learning From Indigenous Vision and Voice by Wendel Cox

On May 9, 2019, Matika Wilbur spoke in the East Reading Room about Project 562. Her energy, humor, and commitment were evident to everyone in the standing-room-only audience. Over a little less than an hour, she reclaimed the East Reading Room for Indigenous voices, speaking not of a past but a dynamic present and future. Wilbur built a relationship with her audience with a greeting, a call to share ourselves with each other, and gathered us together to hear her stories of traveling and photographing Indigenous people. With her charming and disarming stories, she also offered us a glimpse of her process and the work of a slow, patient, and profoundly respectful collaboration between photographer and subject – a process paralleled in recent generations of Indigenous scholarship, where the needs of communities and their respective members come first.

"Generations of Community" by Katie Harding and Joshua Dacey

Every June, the energy inside Baker Berry Library reaches a fever pitch. Early in the month, students flock to the Tower Room to seeking refuge and silence to study for finals, some for the last time. In the levels below, a burgeoning revelry is felt in the excited whispers of summer plans and life after commencement. Then, within the span of two weeks, the library becomes desolate. Students are gone and a brief respite for the staff settles in. For many Dartmouth students, it is a time for reflection. Graduating seniors are leaving Dartmouth and in a sense, leaving what has been their world for the past four years. Entering freshman are grappling with feelings of displacement and nervous excitement as they seek to find their place in what will be their world for the next four years. The campus community ebbs and flows every year in this way and has for nearly 250 years. That history, the history of the campus community, is the central focus of the next 250th anniversary exhibit "Generations of Community." The exhibits' curators, Shaun Akhtar '12 and Katie Harding, wanted to explore "the range of ways community has been experienced (or in some cases not experienced) and how students, past and present, have shaped the communities that we see today." The six panel exhibit will be installed in Reiss Hall, Baker Main for those who missed the renaming last month, from July 3rd until September 18th, 2019. When asked what she hopes visitors will learn in exploring the complex history of community and fellowship and Dartmouth, Katie Harding had this to say,  "I would like for people who view this exhibit to be inspired to think about the communities that exist at Dartmouth and to consider how those communities foster inclusion. I hope that our exhibit gives them examples of students being a positive force for change in creating a more inclusive Dartmouth." Want to hear more from Katie and Shaun? Keep an eye out for our next post in the "Curator's Corner" blog series.

"Enduring Fellowship" was Curated by Shaun Y. Akhtar '12 and Katie Harding. Exhibit design provided by Dennis Grady. Editing by Laura Barrett and Joshua Dacey. The exhibit will be installed from July 3rd until September 18th, 2019 in Reiss Hall located in Baker Library. The exhibit is free and open to the public.

SpeakOut by Caitlin Birch

The oral history interview between Mary K. Klages ’80 and Abigail R. Mihaly ’21 is winding down. As with many interviews, the end is a time for reflection. Abby asks Mary to reflect on her hopes for Dartmouth’s future and Mary weighs in: “What I learned at Dartmouth was conversation is crucial. Talking about things is always better than not talking about things. You’re only as sick as your secrets, and your silence won’t protect you. So that’s what I would wish for, is ongoing in-depth, heartfelt conversation about our differences.”

In a way, Mary has summarized what students like Abby are working to achieve with SpeakOut: a breaking of silences, a space for honest reckoning with Dartmouth’s past. Simultaneously, she’s also described much of what they’re learning: a research methodology that centers intentional conversation and active listening.

SpeakOut — a project dedicated to documenting the history of Dartmouth’s LGBTQIA+ community through oral history interviews like Mary’s — begins in the classroom. There, students who are each responsible for producing four interviews for the project learn the theory and methodology of oral history. They explore the archives and consider how materials end up there. They engage, often for the first time, with the influence archival collecting exerts on the historical record. They consider why and how gaps in the archives form and contend with the specific gap of LGBTQIA+ history. They begin to understand the role they’ll play as student interviewers and they prepare to play it.

The SpeakOut training term emphasizes active learning, while the year of interviewing that trained students embark upon represents experiential learning. Classroom activities that range from the basic think-pair-share to the more involved special collections scavenger hunt prepare students to enter a new, far less familiar classroom: that of an oral history interview that puts their knowledge to the test while inviting them to learn through the lived experiences of their interviewee. The imperfect interviews that result are not the same as those a professional oral historian might produce, but in some ways they’re better. Amidst the inevitable nerves, bumbles, and recording glitches, we hear one generation of the Dartmouth community connect with another in pursuit of exactly what Mary Klages described: in-depth, heartfelt conversation.

Welcome to the first post in out Curator's Corner blog series!

At the heart of any exhibition is a story. Told through words, pictures, and material culture, each story is unique as are the individuals who interpret those stories. From history to art, the exhibitions in the Baker libraries represent often forgotten moments in the collective memory of Dartmouth College. Many of the exhibitions are inspired by artifacts found in the College's collections. Many of the curators are Dartmouth staff, faculty, or students. Stepping into the curator's role can be an exciting, rewarding, and challenging experience, but don't take my word for it. With each new exhibition's debut, we will interview one of the curators who tirelessly worked to create the narrative, select the images, and secure the artifacts.  Today, we are interviewing Peter Carini, College Archivist, about his recent experience co-curating the "On Solid Ground" exhibition.

What is this exhibit about?

On Solid Ground explores the myth of the never changing Dartmouth. Even though we all know that Dartmouth has changed over time, there is a perception that it has always been here and will always be here. The exhibit looks at how the physical College, it's traditions, and intellectual pursuits have shifted and changed over time.

What inspired you to create this exhibit?

In many peoples minds, Dartmouth is based on never changing traditions. Many people bemoan the passing of the traditions they experienced and loved, but when you look at the whole of Dartmouth's history it, like the rest of the World, is a ever changing continuum. This exhibit allowed me to show this and celebrate the changes.

What was the most interesting aspect of creating this exhibit?

While I'm very familiar with the materials that went into this exhibit, as many of them have been used in class session here in Rauner, this exhibit allowed me to reconnect with the items in a new context.

What is your favorite artifact in this exhibit?

While I have deep attachments to all of the items, I really like the manuscript of David Bradley's book on ski jumping. The item itself is fascinating in that you can see how it was assembled, but also the fine, but amateurish drawings give it a very personal feel. Finally, it speaks to how integral Dartmouth was in the development of skiing as a sport.

What do you want visitors to learn from this exhibit?

I hope that those who spend time looking at this exhibit will walk away with a sense of how solidly grounded Dartmouth is, but also with a sense of how that solidity is also a mirage that hides how much it has changed over the course of it's 250 years.

"On Solid Ground" was curated by Jay Satterfield and Peter Carini.  Dennis Grady designed and installed the exhibition. "On Solid Ground" will be on display in Baker Main hall from January 2 until March 21, 2019.

The exhibit can also be viewed online.

Join us for an artist talk presented by Matika Wilbur in the Baker Library, East Reading Room on Thursday May 9th, 2019 from 4.30 pm – 5.45 pm.

Matika Wilbur (Swinomish and Tulalip), one of the nation's leading photographers, will present a talk about Project 562, her multi-year national project dedicated to photographing and collecting contemporary narratives from over 562 federally recognized tribal nations throughout the United States.

Thursday May 9th, 2019 from 4.30 pm – 5.45 pm

Baker Library, East Reading Room

Reception to Follow

Project 562 Homepage

Created by Matika Wilbur, Project 562 is a multi-year national photography project dedicated to photographing over 562 federally recognized tribes in The United States resulting in an unprecedented repository of imagery and oral histories that accurately portrays contemporary Native Americans.
Berry Library is proud to host the photography exhibit from March 15th until June 30th, 2019.

Katie Harding and Shaun Akhtar presenting at the Dartmouth Club of the Upper Valley's symposium.

 

The Dartmouth Club of the Upper Valley hosted a seminar on Saturday February 23rd, 2019  to learn about planning for one aspect of this year’s sestercentennial celebration. We learned even more than we expected.

The Club holds monthly receptions and talks to allow members to meet new senior staff of the College and learn about new programs. Like other Dartmouth Clubs around the country, we hold a day-long seminar once a year to lure our members back into the classroom and extend our Dartmouth Experience beyond our memories into new areas of learning.

This year we were treated to a seminar created by the Dartmouth libraries staff to teach us about how they create the special exhibits that appear periodically in the main corridor of Baker Library we remember for its former card catalogs and in the “main street” corridor into the newer Berry building.

Sue Mehrer welcomed the “class” and introduced the staff of librarians, curators, and designers who engaged our minds and answered our questions for the next five hours.

Laura Barrett presented overviews of about a dozen exhibits created by staff and undergraduate students over the past few years. I was impressed by the wide variety of topics that are addressed, from collected papers of author Mario Puzo, jewelry design, Chinese graphic novels, student-created bookplates, and protests at Dartmouth that all draw on — and draw student attention to — Library resources.We were treated to glimpses of upcoming exhibits on images of Native Americans, food culture, George Ticknor and an alumnus some of us knew, graphic designer John Scotford.

But the main theme was the four special exhibits this year that focus on the themes the College has chosen to frame our 250-year history: Sense of Place, Liberal Arts, Fellowship, Adventuresome Spirit.

The first exhibit “On Solid Ground" was described by Jay Satterfield and Peter Carini. It became clear how each subject has a flattering perspective and some images, artifacts and texts that show a side that may be viewed from a more modern perspective with less pride or comfort. Yet, that is our history to be embraced and understood.

The third part of the seminar focused on Dartmouth’s engagement, over the centuries, with the Liberal Arts.  Wendel Cox and Daniel Abosso showed, read and sang how the picture has changed from a 16th C. woodcut of a tower to the newer tower that is Baker. We will look forward to their exhibit when it goes on display.

After lunch, and a walk-through to view the first of the four exhibits already on display, Dennis Grady described the tools he uses and the spatial limitations and other challenges he faces to create the physical exhibits in six unevenly-spaced windows behind tables, chairs and student commotion. Next, Laura Braunstein presented the goals of the “digital” librarian. The “Dartmouth 250” exhibits will be available on-line to share with the world.

Shaun Akhtar and Katie Harding reflected on how they wrestled with the historical notions of fellowship and community, inclusivity and exclusion, over the years at Dartmouth. We alumni see ourselves and our long years of experience as a continuation of that fellowship.

Finally, Amy Witzel discussed the fourth theme, "Adventuresome Spirit”, and sought discussion and input into what concepts, people and artifacts might best represent this important aspect of Dartmouth history.

We are grateful to the library staff for sharing their time, expertise, and insights into what has made our College tick — and tock — over its first 250 years.

Written by Charles Sherman, '66.

Today, we sit down with the Teaching & Learning Program’s Teaching Assistant, Yilin Huo ’22, to learn more about his experiences working in Baker Library. This will be the first in our “Talk with a TA” blog series. Keep checking the Teaching & Learning blog for new interviews!

Hello everyone! My name is Yilin Huo and I am working in the Library as a Teaching Assistant with Laura Barrett and Katie Harding. I began in Fall 2018 and will be continuing my role in the Teaching and Learning Program until... Essentially, what this role is about is assisting Laura and Katie in creating lesson plans that they bring to the First Year Writing 5, 2/3, and Seminars that they teach. My focus is finding ways to dish out information effectively and simple enough for students to understand and stay focused on. I give Laura and Katie my impressions from a student perspective and bring up what is working and what would make me fall asleep. We usually focus on helping writing students learn how to use the Library’s resources and databases and how to explore a literary or societal topic in their writing.

So far, it has been such a fun experience. Sitting in on various writing classes is always thrilling because I get to participate in classes I cannot take, although sometimes it gets a little awkward since I am in the same grade as all the other students in the class. I was super happy, yet anxious, to lead a discussion in Prof. Adedoyin Ogunfeyimi’s class about research methods we used in high school. I was excited to share my experience with everyone in the class to encourage more responses and participation from all the students. Besides teaching in classrooms, I also help Laura and Katie with behind the scenes work, such as LavNotes (which are present in every bathroom in Baker-Berry and Rauner). Another aspect of my role is learning about Katie’s Open Education efforts on campus. She is dedicated to implementing curriculums based around free textbooks and resources. I strongly support that effort. Laura and Katie have made this job so enjoyable. Thank you, Laura and Katie.

Yilin Huo ’22, the Teaching & Learning Program’s Teaching Assistant, teaching Professor Piper's Writing 5 Class.

Keeping you up to date with Library teaching and outreach activities.

In this issue, we bring you four articles from across the Dartmouth libraries. First, learn about the Software Carpentry workshops and how students are creating usable software. Next, staff from paddock Music Library bring us a snapshot of the "Sing-In" events. Then, learn more about the "On Solid Ground" exhibit. Finally, a sneak peek into our new blog series, "Talk with a TA."

Software Carpentry @ Dartmouth By Lora Leligdon and James Adams

Data-driven research has become ubiquitous across most disciplines, and researchers spend more and more time building and using software.  However, little formal training has been provided to researchers on the fundamental skills needed to produce reliable and reproducible computationally intensive scholarship.  To bridge this gap, the Library and ITC partnered with New England Software Carpentry Library Consortium (NESCLiC) to bring Software Carpentry (SWC) workshops to Dartmouth.

Software Carpentry workshops teach researchers the fundamental skills that will help them be more productive while producing more reproducible, higher quality work. During a two-day workshop, concentrating on either Python or R, students learn how to write software that is readable, reusable, and reliable, along with using the Unix shell to automate their tasks and Git to track and share code. The workshops are taught with openly available lessons and use evidence-based best teaching practices, including live coding, collaborative note taking, and immediate feedback. They are designed to serve as introductions to these tools and concepts, and are approachable for researchers with any level of experience. Feedback from students has highlighted the “hands-on, collaborative environment” as a major strength, and referred to Software Carpentry as “fun” and “confidence-building.”

To date, four SWC workshops have been held on campus, training over 150 researchers!  SWC events are open to all members of the Dartmouth community, and participants from all schools (A&S, Tuck, Thayer, TDI, and Geisel) across campus have attended. As workshop registrations fill quickly, three more workshops are planned for this year. Registration dates are announced in advance, so keep an eye on the Vox Daily for news about upcoming Software Carpentry workshops!

For more information, please email software-carpentry@groups.dartmouth.edu.

"On Solid Ground": The First of Four By Jay Satterfield and Joshua Dacey

It is Monday morning at 9 o'clock in Baker Main hall. The line for KAF is long and you need something to get your mind off that Economics quiz this afternoon. Glancing around the sunlit mezzanine, the glare off of the glass of an exhibit case catches your eye. As the glare fades, the text becomes clear, "On Solid Ground." Upon further investigation (because the KAF line still hasn't moved!) you discover a six panel series detailing "how the physical, social and intellectual spaces that make up Dartmouth have been shaped over time." According to the exhibit's co-curator, Jay Satterfield, the inspiration for the exhibit is rooted in Dartmouth's 250th Anniversary celebrations. At this time of celebration and reflection, the curator's decided that "an exploration of the solid, yet shifting, landscape of the institution seemed like a good way to think about continuity and change." Indeed, a foundation of texts, images, and artifacts, allow visitors to stand  on equal footing with figures such as Eleazar Wheelock, Fred Harris, and John Kemeny. Even with a cursory glance, you find an intellectual and cultural common ground where a dialogue of how the campus has evolved unfolds.

How the historical expansion of Dartmouth's campus remains relevant to a modern audience might seem like a big question. Yet, within the exhibitions panels, the answer is found. That is the power of an exhibit. We absorb and interpret the content as individuals, making our own meaning of the stories and objects presented to us by the curators. Each visitor has the opportunity to find that one object or historical figure to connect with. For Jay Satterfield, two objects of note resonate deeply, "the Clifford Orr letter to his mother and the photograph of Gail Borden's dorm room in Mass Hall." Each of these artifacts provide an avenue by which to access the daily life of Dartmouth students in the early 20th Century.  The stark differences confronting visitors in the displays invite an introspective moment of reflection. Compare the lives of Dartmouth students past to your own. How have they changed in the one hundred years since Clifford wrote to his mother on a sunny September day in 1918? Now consider the campus. In 250 years, how has the campus changed? What outside forces have created these changes? Students, faculty, and staff have shaped the physical and culture environments of Dartmouth through their efforts to exclude, include, expand, and effect change. Therein lies the answer to the question of relevance and the curator's message:

"Schools like Dartmouth can seem so entrenched in tradition that it is hard to imagine shifting their culture. but institutions change, and the change can come from many different directions. We are empowered more than we know."

Jay Satterfield

"On Solid Ground" was curated by Jay Satterfield and Peter Carini.  Dennis Grady designed and installed the exhibition. "On Solid Ground" will be on display in Baker Main hall from January 2 until March 21, 2019.
For more information about the the library's 250th projects visit: https://www.library.dartmouth.edu/250
You can also view the digital exhibit here.

 

Find Your Voice at the "Sing-Ins" By Memory Apata

The Friday Night Sing-Ins in the Paddock Music Library are an opportunity for the Dartmouth community to collaborate with Upper Valley community members through music and discussion. The Sing-Ins, now in their third year, occur every Friday during the month of January. Attendees sing five to six songs whose themes center on the American civil rights movement and other social issues. Some favorite tunes of the group are “We Shall Overcome” and “This Little Light of Mine.”

The event is about an hour and a half long. Attendees are not expected to know the songs before they arrive, nor are they expected to have a high level of musical ability. The leaders of the event (usually the librarian and a group of student musicians) demonstrate a song, inviting the participants to join in after the first demonstration. If participants catch on to the tune quickly, musicality is explored by adding dynamic contrasts and harmony. Once most of the group has learned their parts, there is a pause for a discussion of the song’s historical context. Inevitably, this leads to dialogue on the relevant social issue’s depiction in the music. It isn’t uncommon for disagreements to arise, in which case the librarian steps in to guide the conversation in a productive way. It is not necessary for the group to reach a consensus, but it is necessary that varying perspectives are acknowledged, examined, and sometimes challenged. After five or ten minutes of discussion, we sing through the piece one last time, integrating the information learned during discussion into our final interpretation. The music is, in many ways, an excuse to facilitate community conversation.

Over the past three years, the event has grown from fewer than ten attendees per session to more than thirty attendees per session. Many singers attend more than one event each year and have expressed a desire for more frequent events of a similar quality. Most singers come for the music, but stay for the conversation. In the future, the library hopes to give more leadership to regular attendees, rather than coordinating the events entirely on our own.

For more information, please email paddock.music.library@dartmouth.edu

 

Teaser “Talk with a TA” By Yilin Huo and Joshua Dacey

Have you ever wondered what it is like to work in one of Dartmouth’s seven libraries? Surprisingly, some of the best sources to describe the experience are students. The library employs Teaching Assistants throughout the year, providing valuable work experience and a tidy paycheck to offset the cost of coffee trips to King Arthur Café. Over the next several months, we will interview our library Teaching Assistants in a new blog series entitled “Talk with a TA.” Our first interview was with Yilin Huo ’22. Here is a sample of the upcoming post:

“I was excited to share my experience with everyone in the class to encourage more responses and participation from all the students.”

Baker Tower
Contributors: Lora Leligdon and James Adams (Software Carpentry @ Dartmouth), Jay Satterfield and Joshua Dacey ("On Solid Ground": The First of Four), Memory Apata (Find Your Voice at the "Sing-Ins"),
Yilin Huo (Teaser “Talk with a TA”)
Editors: Joshua Dacey