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Political Science

News & Events, Political Science

Mike Wallace 1957-1958 Interviews Made Public

What a wonderful resource! Whether you liked Mike Wallace or not, or you are too young to have even heard of him, the people he interviewed were fascinating. He bequeathed his papers, etc. to the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas. Even the advertising is fascinating. Philip Morris – the best natural smoke you have ever tasted! These interviews include the Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan and Senator Eastland (nearly the same thing); Abba Eban, ambassador from Israel to the US 10 years after the founding of the State of Israel; comedian, Steve Alan, actors (Kirk Douglas)  and actresses (Gloria Swanson), artists (Dali), musicians (Hammerstein), architects (Wright). Eleanor Roosevelt, Aldous Huxley, William O. Douglas! Oh my, the list goes on. One can hope that they will continue to make more available here.

Libraries, News & Events, O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library, Political Science, Recently Read, Uncategorized

Where do you get your news?

It seems like, increasingly, we live in bubbles populated by people who agree with us.  Our friends post their opinions on our Facebook pages and, if we’ve picked our friends carefully, it turns out we like everything they have to say.  Most Americans say that they want to get their news from a source that has no political bias, though our sources for news and information tend to be from those who we’ve grown to trust, and the political slant of any publication is a matter of opinion.  My “objective” source might be your “big liberal media.”  Curious to know where OSF library users get their political information, we used our “white board conversation” method,  and asked OSF Library users about their news diet last week. Our question was “Where do you get your political news?” and about 75 library users posted their answers on Post-it notes on the board. Obviously this is not a scientific survey, but interesting, nonetheless. (For more scientific data on this question, you should look at the Pew Research Center’s recent report on the news landscape.  In fact, our results were very similar to what Pew found, especially for the young demographic of our library.)

Popular answers included:

– Fox News (13 mentions, though two people specifically said “Not Fox”)
– Daily Show/Colbert Report/SNL: 10
– Reddit: 6
– MSNBC or Today Show: 3
– CNN: 3
– Huffington Post: 3
– Wall Street Journal: 3

Other sources mentioned: New York Times, Washington Post, Drudge Report, GoogleNews, MinnPost, Facebook and Twitter.

Let us know where you get your news!



Political Science, Uncategorized

Facts on File World News Digest

I’ll admit it, I’m a geek. I love data and Facts on File World News Digest provides me with mounds of data. By the time you read this, the 2012 London Olympics will be in the history books – or in the World News Digest chronological timeline which gives you such data as the number of visitors – from 380,000 in 1896 (not too shabby) to 6.5 million in Beijing.  I could calculate the increase but you can tell it was a big increase.  It also tells you how many countries participated – from 14 at the Athens olympics in 1896 to 204 in Beijing. The feminist in me wanted to see what percentage of the athletes were women. The change is astounding. In 1896, the first modern olympiad, there were only 241 athletes – none of them were women. In 2008 there were 10,946 athletes and 42% were women.  For the US, title 9 changed everything for women’s sports. I wonder if that has spurred other countries to change their funding mechanisms too so that they can be competitive with the U.S. women.

But this is a scintilla of the information available. There is a searchable encyclopedia and almanc and then in depth articles and information on elections. The curriculum tools will help you choose a subject for a paper and then provide timelines to use to follow your topic. The research topics go from Abortion to Supreme Court nominations. 

There are country profiles, too. And the information goes back to the 1940’s. 

 And includes editorial  cartoons like this one. But not only the cartoon, oh no. It includes discussion questions on the cartoon. Try it out. Worth your time. From Universal


Political Science

CQ Researcher and Archives

Looking for original, comprehensive reporting and analysis on issues in the news? Look no further –well, of course, you should look further than just one resource, but this is a great place to start. There is content back to 1923 and as recent as last week BUT not in every topic. Birth control’s most recent entry is 2005 and high speed train’s is 2011. The CQ Researcher provides in-depth, unbiased coverage of  lots of topics across many disciplines: health, education, economy, etc.

Reports, researched and written by journalists, are substantive, but not too long: they do not fall into the TLDR category (oh yes, we’re on to you!) at about 12,000-words. Each report follows a consistent format with overview and background, chronology and an assessment of the current state of affairs. Pro and con statements will help you look at the positions offered from ‘both sides,’ although most issues have more than two sides and some have only one side. Maybe after reading the content YOU can think of the third or ninth side. There may be maps and charts depending on topic.

Ways to navigate include browsing by topic; using tracker to see when the most recent content on your topic was updated oryou can go directly to the pros and cons section.

Political Science, Uncategorized

Deborah Tannen coming to St. Thomas

I love Deborah Tannen and she’s coming to UST. I have heard her speak; she’s an excellent speaker. And her writing is even better. St. Thomas Libraries have many of her books. I have copies of my own. Her analysis of the way men and women communicate and the way different parts of the country speak, just delights me. It all makes sense AND is backed up with data.  When New Yorkers trample all over your sentence, or you wait not too patiently for non-interrupters to finish their sentences, or your female boss gives you direction that you assume is a suggestion not a directive, the why all becomes clear in her books.

She will be speaking for the third annual Public Discourse Lecture, hosted by the College of Arts and Sciences and its Board of Advisors.

 The event will be at O’Shaughnessy Educational Center Auditorium Thursday, February 16, 2012 – Thursday, February 16, 2012 from 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.  It’s free and open to the public.
Database Highlights & Trials, Political Science, Uncategorized

CIAO : What’s New, What’s Old, What’s Unique

ciao[columbia international affairs online] has unique content that every political scientist should love.

Unfortunately, most of it is not indexed by Summon because most of  it is not journal articles so you have to go into the database itself. It includes books! Well, really book chapters – seldom is the whole book included; some of the included journals are also just abstracts.  Sigh. Wait, wait that’s the bad news! The good news is there are case studies, working papers that are unique and there are ready-made course packs – faculty member are you seeing this?  In partnership with the Economist it has current videos, too.  The atlas has information you might find elsewhere in bits and pieces, but in ciao, it’s all in there (like Ragu) – politics AND economy AND organized for easy access. It includes analysis, background, structure and outlook for both the politics and the economy for each country. With handy maps that allow you to click on the country you care about.  Let me know what you think about ciao.

Political Science

Mountain of Books

Guy Laramee Book CarvingCool new art form. If you ever wondered what to do with your old books (and the library has told you we don’t want them) and you have talent, these should give you ideas.

You might notice how the book titles and the designs often match.