Announcements • Et. Seq: The Harvard Law School Library Blog

We’re hiring: Research Librarian

The Harvard Law School Library seeks an experienced Research Librarian to join our collaborative Reference & Research Services team.

With 58 full-time staff and a collection of over 2 million items, the Harvard Law School Library is the largest academic law library in the world. Our collection includes scholarship and primary legal materials from jurisdictions around the world. More than our size, what makes us unique is our work developing and deploying services at the leading edge of librarianship. Our Research and Faculty Services teams include librarian liaisons, an empirical research team, and a robust document delivery service. Research librarians have the opportunity to develop relationships with Harvard Law School’s smart, diverse, and vibrant population of students, faculty, clinics, and journals and to promote Harvard Law School’s mission to contribute “to the advancement of justice and the well-being of society.” It is an exciting time at the Library and we invite you to join our team!

The Research Librarian works under the direction of the Manager of Research Services and alongside a dedicated team of 8 research librarians and a research assistant. The Research Librarian provides research support to faculty, staff, and students in law and law-related disciplines. Experience or interest in foreign, comparative and international law research is a plus. The Research Librarian may participate in library, law school, and university projects and teams to advance the Library’s goals and vision.

Please visit Harvard Careers for the complete job posting and to submit your application.

852 RARE: From Paper Plates to Sticky Notes, Documenting Student Activism

Historical & Special Collections (HSC) has been working hard since the spring of 2016 to collect material that helps tell the story of student life at Harvard Law School (HLS), most recently in the form of the HLS Community Capture Project. Given our focus on archiving student action, it was very exciting to find a nondescript, cardboard box tucked away in the Library’s art office, contained objects from a student protest in 1987.

On the front of the box scribbled in pencil were notes made by Bernice Loss, the School’s first art curator. Loss, a trained artist (and spouse of HLS faculty member Louis Loss) started to look after the School’s art collection in the early 1970s. In 1977, she was named the first HLS art director, later becoming the curator of the art collection and a member of the Library’s Special Collections Department (created in 1985). Loss’ inscription reads: 1987 / Paper Plate Faces / (To protest too many male faces in collection). Inside are more than 50 papers plates with images and slogans written in marker meant to highlight the larger number of white, male portraits and the lack of women and professors of color. According to Loss’ notes, these plates were placed in the hallways of Austin Hall, on books in the Austin Hall north classroom; on the frames of pictures in Langdell Hall; as well as a few other locations on campus.

Piece of paper and 4 plates

A sign and examples of the paper plates recently rediscovered.
Harvard Law School Library, Historical & Special Collections

During her tenure, Loss worked to diversify the portrait collection, overseeing the acquisition of portraits of women and people of color including Judge Ruth Abrams (LL.B. 1956), Florence Allen, Clarence Clyde Ferguson, and George Lewis Ruffin (LL.B. 1869). However, then as now, the collection was predominantly made up of portraits of white men.

Like the notes students placed “beside portraits of black faculty, expressing appreciation for their pedagogy, scholarship, and character” in response to the vandalism of photographs of Black faculty members (and later archived by HSC), these paper plates are extremely ephemeral, making it all the more exciting that they have survived more than 30 years. They also raise interesting questions regarding their storage and preservation, as well as the ethics of collecting student protest material. Did students consider what would happen to the plates after they put them up? Were they involved in the transfer of material to the Library? How does one care for paper objects that are more 3-D than flat?

The plates and their accompanying material will now be formally accessioned and made available to anyone who would like to see them.

If you were a student involved in this protest, we would love to hear from you and learn more about this action and how the HLS community responded.

Thoughts on Library Research Guides

Since I came back to the law library from my professional development leave, I have been looking at and thinking about the research guides I have written here.  (You can view the list of them.)  I was never formally trained on writing research guides.  I learned a little bit about them, conceptually, in library school, but mainly I have developed my own process and style by just doing them.

I think my philosophy about research guides has changed a little over the years.  In the past, I thought that bigger is definitely better.  Certainly the guides that I have done for German Law Research and Alternative Dispute Resolution Research are quite broad in terms of the number of topics covered and number of resources referenced.  Those guides generate a lot of interest in terms of traffic and hits, not just from Harvard but from all over the world.  People clearly find them helpful on some level.

However, I seem to be shifting a bit toward preferring to write smaller guides on narrower topics.  Like every librarian, I have a unique set of interests, strengths, and favored research techniques, and I think my guides should reflect those.

I am also thinking about how to maximize the utility of the guides that I write for Harvard Library users.  The Harvard Library has over 17 million volumes across all its libraries’ collections.  That’s a lot!  Many of the physical books and journals in the collection are stored off-site and cannot be physically browsed on the Harvard campus by library users.

In addition, our library catalog, HOLLIS, has been evolving over the last few years, as are catalogs at other academic libraries.  What I’ve been hearing about user feedback related to academic library catalogs is that people want a one-stop shop that delivers books and periodical articles, with a Google-like single-box search interface.  Of course a catalog that is set up like this makes quick searches easier.  However, it also might make it more difficult to dive deeply into a very nuanced scholarly topic, to maximize the relevancy of search results, and to find all the relevant materials in the collection, especially if users do not know very much about advanced searching.

The bottom line for me: I think it’s important to help library users where they are, and where many of them are is online, maybe even on their phone, looking for the fastest and easiest way to find the exact library materials they need.  And who can blame them for that?  If research is arduous and frustrating, then it’s not fun.  As someone who loves research, I hate the thought of that!

So the last two guides I have written for the law library have been very much of a “niche” variety.  For each of these guides, I took a smaller topic and wrote a guide describing, on a single web page with lots of links, the best options that I know to use to research it.

One of these new guides, Organized Crime in Italy, was written after I worked with a student who is doing some research in this area.  I have to admit I am more than a little fascinated with this topic.  I also wanted the opportunity to practice working with Italian-language resources.  Of course, in writing this guide, I am not doing the student’s research for her, but I am suggesting options that are available to her, based on my experience as a researcher here at Harvard.

The other guide I wrote recently is Resistance to the National Socialist Government in Germany.  This was also in created in response to a research area in which one of our users is interested.  As the library’s expert in German law, and because the Harvard Library has so many relevant materials on this subject, this was too important a guide for me not to spend my time on.

As for the contents of the guides themselves, anyone who looks at my guides will see immediately how much I love Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) as an indexing instrument.  I always include links to pre-populated HOLLIS searches by subject, using controlled LCSH vocabulary, in my guides.  This is the surest way I know to find relevant books on a subject, regardless of publication language.

Writing a research guide is, in my experience as a research librarian, the best and most rewarding way to learn about a topic and about optimal research techniques.  But it is definitely more important that a guide is readable and useful to the researchers who are looking for help on how research should be done at your library.  Going forward, I will continue to work toward that as my primary goal.

Visit Historical & Special Collections (and lots of other archives!) during Cambridge Open Archives this June

This year Historical & Special Collections is celebrating Cambridge Open Archives’ 10th Anniversary as part of two weeks of behind-the-scenes tours at 15 archives, libraries, and special collections around Cambridge! Get a closer look at special collections and archival material here at HLS, as well as 14 other archives at Harvard and across the city.

 

: Unite to Support Rent Control flyer with additional information about Cambridge Open Archives

Unite to Support Rent Control flyer, Records of the Cambridge Tenants’ Union, Harvard Law School Library, Historical & Special Collections, Box 11, Folder 1.

When:   June 11-15 and June 18-21, 2018
Where: 
Various locations in Cambridge, including Historical & Special Collections
Cost:     
Free! Space is limited, however, so be sure to register below.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER [Read More]

Coming to Historical & Special Collections on June 1: HOLLIS Special Request

On June 1, 2018, Harvard Law School Library’s Historical & Special Collections (HSC) will begin using HOLLIS Special Request!

HOLLIS Special Request allows you to request material to view in our reading room and to request reproductions of HSC’s materials. HOLLIS Special Request replaces paper registration and request forms, and will make it easier for you to keep track of appointment and reproduction requests. Appointments in HSC’s reading room, the Root Room, are available Tuesday-Friday between 10:00 and 5:00.

Use HOLLIS Special Request to:

  • Submit requests to use HSC material in our reading room via links in the Harvard Library catalog, HOLLIS
  • Submit orders for reproductions including digital scans of Harvard special collections materials
  • Track the status of your requests in a single location
  • Access detailed information about past requests

Many Harvard special collections and archives already use HOLLIS Special Request. Once you have created an account you can use it to request material from all participating Harvard libraries and keep track of your requests in a single location.

To get started, create your HOLLIS Special Request account now!

Here’s a quick tutorial to help you get started, and some FAQs about using HOLLIS Special Request and HSC’s collections. We are excited about HOLLIS Special Request and look forward to going live on June 1!

We’re hiring: Project Archivist, Justice Antonin Scalia Papers

Antonin Scalia, HLS Yearbook Photo, 1960The Harvard Law School Library seeks an experienced, collaborative, and service-oriented processing archivist for a one-year term beginning July 1, 2018. Reporting to the Curator of Modern Manuscripts within the Historical & Special Collections unit (HSC), the successful candidate will survey United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s collection of scholarly and professional work, develop a multi-year processing plan, and begin describing the collection in an Encoded Archival Description (EAD) finding aid.

More details–including duties, responsibilities, and qualifications and how to apply–available at our job posting.

Learn more about the donation of the Justice’s papers to the Library in our earlier post, Justice Scalia’s papers donated to HLS Library–what’s next?

About Historical & Special Collections: HSC is a small and energetic team within Harvard Law School Library engaged with all aspects of special collections work. Harvard Law School Library’s collection of historic legal materials is one of the largest in the world, and includes rare books, early manuscripts, visual materials, and modern manuscripts. As members of the Harvard Law School Library, team members contribute to the Law School’s mission by collecting and sharing our materials with the HLS community and with researchers worldwide. As active members of the large and thriving Harvard Library community, HSC staff collaborate with colleagues to share information, solve problems, and learn.

Photo credit: Justice Antonin Scalia’s HLS Year Book portrait, 1960. Justice Scalia graduated from the Harvard Law School in 1960. He worked at a large law firm, taught law at the University of Virginia, the University of Chicago, and Stanford; and held several administrative posts in the federal government. He served as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, before being appointed to the Supreme Court in 1986. The collection includes material relating to all of these activities.

Scanning Nuremberg: “Your child belongs to us already.”

Post by Matt Seccombe, May 7, 2018

During April I analyzed the documents in seven IMT prosecution document books, covering 245 documents and 770 pages of material. The subjects covered diverse elements of the “Common plan or conspiracy” charge (count 1), including totalitarian control, education and youth, propaganda, purges and terrorization, labor, and suppression of Christian churches. The material reflects the prosecution’s central argument, that the war crimes and crimes against humanity (counts 3 and 4) were derivative of the primary crime—the war of aggression (count 2)—and that the entire Nazi regime was a common plan to take control of Germany and mobilize it for that war.

Tactics: While the main story of the rise to power is familiar, partly due to the trial’s function in presenting the record to the world, some of the details are surprising. Beyond thuggery in the streets, some of the early measures were more subtle. One affidavit described a tactic used by Goebbels in Berlin: “Once, in order to disrupt the premiere of the film ‘All Quiet on the Western Front,’ he had white mice smuggled into the theater and then set them free; this caused an indescribable panic among the female moviegoers.”

Militarization: The evidence confirms the theme that the regime was dedicated to war from the outset and that it worked systematically to militarize every element of German society. The take-over of the trade unions in May 1933 was not simply a matter of controlling the organizations. It extended to the reorientation of work, as reflected in the rhetoric: Nazi activists in workplaces were the “Factory Troops,” and workers became “Soldiers of Labor.”

The message was pervasive in the Hitler Youth organizations: “He who wants to live should also fight!” “Fight is the highest aim of youth.” “For Hitler we live, For Hitler we die.” (By the way, Hitler Youth organizations operated in many countries outside Germany, including the United States.)

The indoctrination extended to young children, including one very young boy who was visited by a monitor at home. She told him, “You must grow up and be a big boy so you can fight for the Fuehrer.” He replied, “I don’t like to fight.” The lesson was repeated.

Hitler himself made the point most emphatically. In a speech in November 1933 he addressed those who had opposed him and would never support him. That no longer mattered, he told them: “Your child belongs to us already”

The HLS Library holds approximately one million pages of documents relating to the trial of military and political leaders of Nazi Germany before the International Military Tribunal (IMT) and to the twelve trials of other accused war criminals before the United States Nuremberg Military Tribunals (NMT). We have posted five trials so far (NMT 1 through NMT 4 and NMT 7) and have completed digitization of all the documents and transcripts. 

We are now engaged in the process of analyzing, describing and making machine readable the remaining trials’ materials in preparation for posting them to the Web. We hope to complete this work as soon as possible based upon available funding.  For more information about this project, please contact Jocelyn Kennedy.

Summer Renovations Coming to a Library Near You!

We are improving our spaces to improve our services!

Beginning May 2018, the HLS Library will undergo renovation to bring our Research Services, Teaching, Learning, & Curriculum Solutions, and administrative staff closer to you, our users! Our renovations will occur over two summers, and our renovated spaces will include updated technology in our study rooms; open collaborative spaces; new private talking spaces; and easy access to library experts on the 2nd and 3rd floors of Langdell Hall.

During the Summer of 2018, we will renovate Langdell 3 South and Langdell 2 South. Our second renovation aka Phase 2 will take place during summer 2019 (more about this below).

Here’s our tentative schedule for phase 1:

Friday, May 18: Langdell 3 South will be walled off for the start of the renovation

Friday, May 25: The Lemann Lounge will be walled off for construction immediately after Commencement.

Construction will take place throughout the summer.

October 2018: Research Services and Teaching, Learning, & Curriculum Solutions will move from the fourth and fifth floors of Areeda Hall to the renovated area in Langdell 3 South. The renovated space will include an open, collaborative area and three group study rooms with improved technology.

Library Administration will move from the fifth floor of Areeda Hall to the south side of Langdell 2.

What about the art?

Don’t worry–paintings and sculptures in affected areas will be stored or relocated in the Library to prevent any damage during renovation.

What about noise?

We will do everything we can to minimize the sound and disruption during renovation. However, there is always some disruption and noise. All heavy construction will finish by 10am each day. We’ll have plenty of earplugs available and noise-canceling headphones available for check out at the Circulation Desk on a first-come, first-served basis.

What if it’s still noisy or I have a question or suggestion? 

Please email hlslweb@law.harvard.edu.

What about the Reading Room?

We love the Reading Room just the way it is! No changes are planned.

How do I find a book?

Check our guide to finding items at the HLS Library, which is being updated regularly. If you still can’t find something, just ask.

What about Phase 2?

We will start planning for Phase 2 in late summer. We value your input! Please watch your email, library and student org space bulletin boards, and our lightning lesson table for opportunities to participate in the planning. We’ve done some preliminary research with student groups and can tell you that the area will remain student-focused for study and collaboration. Have thoughts now? Email hlslweb@law.harvard.edu.

How can I stay up to date on what’s happening?

Watch this blog space and our social media for periodic progress reports.

Are you really excited about the renovations?

Yes, we’re super excited about getting more collaborative and modular space that will bring us closer to our community. We can’t wait to welcome you to our new and improved Research Services, TLC, and Library Administration areas in October!

Summer 2018 and new alumni access to legal research databases

Summer is coming–really! And with it, questions about access to our databases. Read on for answers for both continuing students and those of you who will soon be alumni!

BLOOMBERG LAW
For summer: if your workplace has a Bloomberg Law account, you are expected to use that, but there are no restrictions on your HLS Bloomberg accounts over the summer. Need an account? Just sign up with your HLS email address.

For new alumni: graduating students will have access to Bloomberg Law for a six month post-graduation grace period, ending November 30, 2018.

For questions and assistance with Bloomberg Law, please contact our rep, Rebecca Schwartz.

LEXIS
For summer
: Harvard Law students have free, unlimited summer access, regardless of their summer position, to Lexis Advance for the summer of 2018. Students can use their Harvard Law student account regardless of whether they are getting paid to work this summer. Please note that some employers may ask that students not conduct work related legal research on their school ID. So long as a student has a current, active Lexis Advance account, they do not need to sign-up for anything to take advantage of summer access.

For new alumni: graduating students will have free, unlimited access to Lexis Advance through their HLS accounts until June 2018. In July 2018, Lexis Advance student IDs will automatically transition to Graduate IDs. Graduate IDs are not affiliated with the law school and expire on December 31, 2018. Graduate IDs offer recent graduates the opportunity to continue to do free, unlimited research on Lexis Advance while studying for the bar and becoming more confident with their legal research skills.

For questions and assistance with Lexis, please contact our rep, Reeves Gillis.

WESTLAW
For summer: You can use Thomson Reuters products, including Westlaw and Practical Law, over the summer for non-commercial research. You can turn to these resources to gain understanding and build confidence in your research skills, but you cannot use them in situations where you are billing a client. Examples of permissible uses for your academic password include the following:

  • Summer coursework
  • Research assistant assignments
  • Law Review or Journal research
  • Moot Court research
  • Non-Profit work
  • Clinical work
  • Externship sponsored by the school
  • Pro bono work required or encouraged by the school

You do not have to do anything to gain access to these tools over the summer.

For new alumni: you have access to Thomson Reuters products, including Westlaw and Practical Law, for six months after graduation. Your “Grad Elite” access gives you 60-hours of usage on these products per month to gain understanding and build confidence in your research skills. While you cannot use it in situations where you are billing a client, Thomson Reuters encourages you to use these tools to build your knowledge of the law and prepare for your bar exam.

For questions and assistance with Westlaw, please contact our Thomson Reuters Academic Account Manager, Mark Frongillo.

OTHER DATABASES
Continuing students have full access over the summer to most other library resources at Harvard simply using your HUIDs and PINs. So if you need JSTOR, HeinOnline, Academic Search Premier or most other databases, you’re all set!

New alumni continue to have access to some databases, including HeinOnline’s Law Journal Library and the CQ Press Library, a great source for information and data on government and politics. Click through to our guide to Library Services for HLS Alumni for information about how to claim your Harvard Key and get access, plus learn about other resources for alumni and how to stay connected from afar.

QUESTIONS?
If you have questions about summer access, alumni access, or any research-related questions over the summer and beyond, you can always contact the library. Our full contact details are available at Ask a Librarian.

New website for Library Bicentennial Exhibit – Collections | Connections

The Harvard Law School Library is pleased to announce the launch of the companion website for its Bicentennial exhibit:

Exhibit logo

 

 

 

 

The website is arranged around the six themes of the exhibit: Keepers of MemoryPreserving Legal Heritage, Global Citizens, Promoting Justice, Supreme Court Clerks and Their Justices, and Library as Lab. It features items from the physical exhibit, as well as additional content from the Library’s collection of more than 2 million items.

Learn how the Library preserves the continuing story of the Harvard Law School community: faculty, students, alumni, and staff who are moved to question, prepared to reason, and called to act.

http://bit.ly/hls200exhibit

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