WSU Library System News

News & Updates in the Libraries

12/9 | Collecting Past Radicals and Rebels: The Resonance of Resistance and the Persistence of Injustice: a presentation with Dr. Francis Shor

November 4th, 2014

Tuesday, December 9, 4:30 p.m.
Reuther Conference Room, 2nd Floor
Walter P. Reuther Library
3401 Cass Avenue, Detroit, MI 48202

December 2 marked the 50th anniversary of an iconic moment in the free speech movement: the 1964 student protests and sit-in at the University of California, Berkeley campus. 52 years before that, another significant free speech fight embroiled San Diego in a six-month confrontation between police, vigilantes, and the Industrial Workers of the World. Labor activist Joe Hill escaped the violence of San Diego only to succumb to anti-union violence in Utah in 1915. “Collecting Past Radicals and Rebels: The Resonance of Resistance and the Persistence of Injustice,” will be an illustrated presentation that will explore the role of IWW rebels Joe Hill and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, not only highlighting the meaning of their radicalism to their times, but also recognizing how their work (and the persistence of social injustices) helped to inspire free speech, civil rights, and resistance movements through the 1960s and into our own times with the Occupy Wall Street movement.

This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. This event is sponsored by the Reuther Library and the University Library System. Donations will be accepted at the event to increase access, awareness and digitization of the Industrial Workers of the World Records held in the Reuther Library.

More information at 313-577-4024 / /

Wayne State University’s Reuther Library opens Utah Phillips collection for research

November 3rd, 2014

Wayne State University’s Walter P. Reuther Library recently announced the opening of the Utah Phillips Papers for research. A well known folk singer, storyteller, poet, radio host and activist, Bruce Duncan “Utah” Phillips was a prominent member of the American folk music community in the latter half of the 20th century.

Phillips’ widow, Joanna Robinson, selected the Reuther Library as the repository for the papers because Reuther also serves as the repository for the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), a labor organization that Phillips was heavily involved with. Arriving in 45 cardboard boxes, Phillips himself described the materials as “what academics have characterized as my personal archives, but are in fact a jumble of papers and objects, the detritus of over half a century.”

The collection includes documents from Phillips’ professional and political activities predominantly from 1968 to 2008, including drafts of songs, poems and stories as well as set lists, tour itineraries, and other materials associated with his performances. In addition to notes, agendas and texts for his radio show, the collection also features correspondence with fellow musicians like Pete Seeger, Johnny Cash, Ani DiFranco, Rosalie Sorrels, Kate Wolf and Faith Petric. Photographs, posters, audio and video recordings and memorabilia mostly related to Phillips’ career as a singer and traveling musician also make up a portion of this collection.

The collection also documents Phillips’ political and social activism, including his involvement with the IWW and other labor groups, his pacifist involvement with peace organizations and his contributions to environmentalist and homeless advocacy organizations. Finally, the papers document Utah’s faith through texts and programs for sermons delivered by Utah to Unitarian Universalist congregations.

“This folk artist’s collection is like no other that we have at the Reuther,” said Reuther Field Archivist Louis Jones. “This body of material not only documents Phillips’ musical career, but his involvement with the working class, organized labor and progressive activism, making his collection particularly unique and of sure interest to a wide range of researchers.”

For more information on the Utah Phillips Papers or Utah Phillips, visit or contact Louis Jones at (313) 577-0263

Pastoral Paintings Hidden on the Edge of Old Books

October 26th, 2014

Here’s something that will have you bending all the classic books in your house: fore-edge painting, the art of hiding illustrations and paintings on the outer edges of a book. The technique, which is said to date back to as early as the 1650s, was recently brought to the webs attention by Colossal, who shared brilliant examples of the result in GIF form.

The technique works by bending the edges of the book to expose just a small sliver of the page’s face. Drawing or painting from that angle leaves only a small portion of the image on each page – not enough to notice on each individual page, but enough to form an entire scene when bent back to the same angle they were painted from.

The GIFs on Colossal come from Colleen Theisen who helps out with outreach and instruction at the Special Collections & University Archives at University of Iowa, and form a series comprising the four seasons on four books from 1837. Each details beautiful examples of life through the year – in a time where people were far more connected to the land and changing seasons around them.

For visuals and to read more visit

12/3 | Free webinar: Applying Copyright in Online Learning Environments

October 26th, 2014

Wednesday, December 3
2:30–4:00 PM
David Adamany Undergraduate Library Community Room (3rd Floor)

Want to learn more about copyright compliance for materials delivered through your Blackboard course site?

Online platforms have become the base of operation for instruction for both face-to-face classes and distance education; yet current copyright law does not provide direct guidance on what you can legally upload into your CMS. In this webinar, Gretchen McCord, from Digital Information Law, will break down the elements of course management system (CMS) use and help you assess risk and analyze copyright law to ensure your CMS is within copyright regulations. She will illuminate facets of copyright law that will help you make informed decisions.
In this webinar, you will learn:

• How to apply fair use and other copyright exceptions to your decision making
• How to make sound analogies from court decisions on brick-and-mortar cases
• How to assess risk when using copyright-protected content

Although this webinar is targeted toward librarians, we believe this content will be interesting to faculty and staff who develop and support online courses, or the use of Blackboard, in their Departments and Programs. All Wayne State faculty and staff are welcome to attend.

About the Instructor
Gretchen McCord is an attorney and librarian, focusing on intellectual property in digital formats. Previously an academic librarian, she practiced law for 9 years before starting her legal advising and training consultancy, Digital Information Law. She has taught as an adjunct at both university and community college levels in the areas of copyright, privacy, trademark, and First Amendment law. A frequent speaker, she is the author of Copyright in Cyberspace: Questions and Answers for Librarians, What You Need to Know About Privacy Law: A Guide for Librarians and Educators, and Fair Use: The Secrets No One Tells You.

Currently registered Wayne State students are eligible for the Student Advantage program – a free download of Microsoft Office!

October 25th, 2014

Currently registered Wayne State students are eligible for the Student Advantage program – a free download of Microsoft Office!

Available for Macs, PCs, and select mobile devices
Download on up to 5 devices
Fully-featured copy of Microsoft Office – for use as long as student is registered
Keep up to date with the latest version with regular updates
Includes Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more!

Visit to download your copy!

New Clinical Pharmacology Mobile App Is Available

October 24th, 2014

A new mobile application for Elsevier Clinical Pharmacology is now available for you who use iPhone/iPad and Android devices. The new Clinical Pharmacology Mobile app can be downloaded via the Apple or Android app stores. See download instructions.

Clinical Pharmacology Mobile contains some of the same trusted content you depend on today:

  • Drug monographs both adult and pediatric
  • Indications, including on and off label
  • Contraindications and Precautions
  • Drug Images
  • IV compatibility
  • Drug-drug interactions report

Contact Shiffman Medical Library at (313) 577-1094 or email for further assistance.

Shiffman Medical Library Staff

The 16 Coolest College Libraries In The Country

October 23rd, 2014

Wayne State didn’t make the list but it’s still a great group to peruse!

Undergraduate Library will be CLOSED on Saturday, October 25

October 21st, 2014

Due to unscheduled maintenance, the Undergraduate Library will be closed on Saturday, October 25. The building will reopen on Sunday, October 26 at 11 a.m. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Open Access Week film screening: “The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz,” October 24

October 1st, 2014

As part of Open Access Week 2014, the Wayne State University Libraries will be hosting a screening of the 2014 documentary, “The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz,” on Friday, October 24 at 11 a.m. in the Kresge Auditorium inside of the Purdy/Kresge Library. Directed by Brian Knappenberger, the film follows the story of programming prodigy and information activist Aaron Swartz.

As a teenager, Aaron Swartz was a computer-programming prodigy with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge. After emerging as a pioneer of Internet activism, education, and politics, he was indicted on multiple federal charges in 2011 and 2012, setting off a complex chain of events that left the Internet community reeling. Shortly thereafter, at the age of 26, Swartz was found dead of an apparent suicide in his Brooklyn apartment. His family, friends, and supporters immediately blamed the prosecutors of the case, who aimed to put him in jail for 35 years and brand him a convicted felon for life. Swartz was persecuted for the very rights and freedoms for which he stood, and that ultimately broke him.

Weaving together home video footage and anecdotal interviews from his closest confidants, Brian Knappenberger creates a dynamic portrait of a precocious boy who grew up to lead the Internet community into a new age of data sharing and free speech.

Help the Wayne State University Libraries create a tool that will revolutionize self-publishing! Your feedback may help us move forward

October 1st, 2014

Help the Wayne State University Libraries create an innovative new tool that will revolutionize self-publishing! We’re embarking on a new project called the Publishing Preparation Alchemist (PPA) that aims to take away the daunting process of self-publishing. PPA will be a Turbo Tax-style application that will help self publishers put together their content, create metadata and package it into a file structure suitable for software and mobile devices. Instead of worrying about formatting and assembly, this tool will allow authors to concentrate more on their creative vision and empower them to easily share their creations with the world.

If you think this is a great idea that should come to fruition, help us get the funding to make it happen. The Knight Foundation is sponsoring “The Knight News Challenge,” an open contest that funds innovative projects. Groups and individuals from around the world submit their ideas and can be awarded funding amounts of $1000 to $1 million. The Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts.

Your feedback will help clarify and better refine our project. As a writer, what is the most difficult part of self-publishing your work? Would an all-in-one app change the way you plan your writing/publishing process? Get involved by applauding us or leaving a comment at