Library

Showing posts with label Matheson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Matheson. Show all posts

26 May 2017

Matheson Library turns a new page

The Sir Louis Matheson Library on Clayton campus has reopened from a stunning western entrance via the Forum. All study spaces are now available to students.



We celebrated the reopening of the Sir Louis Matheson Library this week, marking the completion of its transformation into a modern, vibrant and stimulating learning and research environment.


President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Margaret Gardner AO, said the reopening of the library – a place where students spend some of their most productive and formative hours – gave renewed life to the heart of the Clayton Campus.

“The Sir Louis Matheson Library is a cornerstone of Clayton campus life. More than just a repository for knowledge it is a space that contributes to vibrant academic, cultural and community life,” Professor Gardner said.

A key feature of the Clayton Campus Masterplan, the new-look library boasts a long list of benefits, including:

  • a welcoming and inspiring new entrance 
  • improved navigation throughout the three buildings 
  • four teaching spaces with a combined capacity for 200 students 
  • a range of individual and collaborative study areas, with an overall 15% increase in seating to 1620 seats 
  • technology-rich study areas, including 240 computers (67 are 27-inch iMacs and a range of laptops) 
  • 20 bookable discussion rooms 
  • Wi-Fi, powered workstations, and digital wayfinding pointing students to available study spaces. 
University Librarian Cathrine Harboe-Ree said the completion of the refurbishment marks the culmination of a journey.

"We set out to create a welcoming, inspiring and enabling facility for first-class scholarship at Monash. We are already hearing that staff and students agree that we have achieved that," Ms Harboe-Ree said.

The design of the library spaces is enhanced by an eclectic array of artwork from the University's collection, exhibition and function capacity, a digital wall to showcase Monash research activity and an in-library cafe.

The new-look Matheson Library will welcome over 10,000 visitors a day, complementing daily online activity of over 80,000 accesses and downloads of Monash University Library's electronic resources.


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20 March 2017

Access to General Collection at Matheson Library

Beginning Wednesday 22 March, the South stairwell and lifts in the Sir Louis Matheson Library will be closed to users to allow the builders to speed up the internal works in this area.

Users can access the General Collection via the rear stairs (East). These stairs are located behind the computer area to the left of the Library's temporary entrance on the lower ground floor. You can access the ground floor up to level 5 via these rear stairs.

Users with a disability may request Library staff assistance at the Information point to retrieve items from the General Collection.

The quiet study spaces in the General Collection will be affected by noisy works. Please find alternative quiet spaces in the Matheson Library, or at either Law or Hargrave-Andrew Libraries on the Clayton campus.

The South stairwell and lift works are expected to be completed between 29 March and 4 April. We will provide updates as works progress.

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20 February 2017

Matheson Library reopens


The Sir Louis Matheson Library at Clayton has reopened via the temporary entrance in the Performing Arts courtyard from Scenic Boulevard. A new path is now in place from the Menzies Building area through the north end of the library to the Robert Blackwood Hall and the courtyard.



The Matheson Library has reopened on Monday 20 February after a summer-long closure. Its opening hours are 8am - 9pm Monday to Friday, and 10am - 5pm on Saturdays and Sunday. 

Staff and students can again request items from other campuses via Search and choose Matheson Library as the pick-up location. Holds are now located on the ground floor (up one level from the temporary entrance). Please note: items on shelf at Matheson cannot be requested for pick-up at the same library.


Study spaces and teaching rooms

Study spaces are available, including on the upper floors occupied by the General Collection. Discussion rooms can be booked by students for group work. The three teaching rooms can also be used by students when they are not being used for Library teaching programs.

More areas will be opened up as these are completed and handed over by the contractors to the Library. In the next few days, the new level 1 area on the southern end will house the Music, Multimedia and Teaching Materials Collections, including the Japanese language materials. This area will also have a large number of brand new Macintosh computers and two bookable discussion rooms.

Special Collections Reading Room

The Special Collections Reading Room located on the ground floor has also reopened. This room is designed for the exclusive purpose of viewing restricted special use items from the Special Collections. It is open from 9am to 5pm on weekdays.

To arrange to see a rare or fragile item from our Rare Books, Asian or Music and Multimedia Collections, please contact staff by email special.collections@monash.edu or telephone (03) 9905 2689 to request the item/s in advance. Pre-requested items will be retrieved twice a day, at 10am and 1pm. Staff will also be on hand at the Reading Room.


Toilet amenities

Currently, the available toilets are all located on the lower ground level but more toilets will progressively be completed in the following weeks.


Final stage

Work is progressing well on the remaining areas, including the new and visually striking entrance, a large learning space on the ground floor with more computers, and a cafe inside the library.

Library users can look forward to a more transparent building, with great views to the west spanning the landscaped Library plaza, the future Jazz Lounge (currently the Rotunda), the Menzies Building and the Campus Centre. The transparency goes from end to end, with a view to the Performing Arts courtyard to the east.

Final touches and installations will ensure that the Matheson Library will truly have been dramatically transformed.


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1 December 2016

Writing in books: Marginalia in the Rare Books Collection

When you are reading for study or pleasure, do you underline words, highlight parts of the text or draw asterisks next to important lines? Do you write notes to yourself in the margin to clarify what you’ve just read or to remind yourself of an idea that the passage has brought up? If you are using an ebook or reading an article online, do you use the annotate tool to highlight passages or to create notes? Perhaps you annotate as a way of replying to the author or to question, approve, or refute his or her viewpoint.  If you do any of these things, you may not have realised it, but you have been engaging in the scholarly process of creating marginalia.  By Lauren Buchanan



Recently, a conference on marginalia - Marginal Notes: Social Reading and the Literal Margins - was held at the State Library of Victoria in conjunction with Monash University and University of Otago’s Centres for the Book. It included a masterclass where participants could bring and discuss examples encountered in their work or study, learn about different kinds of annotation, and consider the underlying meaning and significance of the practice. Attending the conference led me to consider the examples of marginal notes I have seen in the Rare Books Collection at Monash and pick out just a few favourites to share. These items are available for you to view in the Special Collections Reading Room at Sir Louis Matheson Library, Clayton. (Note: The library is currently closed, reopening on 30 January 2017.)

Marginalia is generally produced as part of the reading and studying process (Jackson, 2001) and can also serve a communicative function (Fajkovic & Björneborn, 2014). Annotations to the text can act as an imaginary conversation between the reader and the author, as well as initiating an ongoing conversation between subsequent readers of the marginalia. Once they have been written, “marginalia become physical artefacts, whose function is a constant and inseparable part of both the text and the physical book” (Fajkovic & Björneborn, 2014, p. 914).

In the realm of marginalia, there are many different kinds of markings. From an innocuous pencil underline of a keyword to the vertical line next to a paragraph indicating its importance; from an exclamatory “No!” scrawled by an outraged reader to an earnestly written argument debunking the author’s viewpoint in the margin of the page. Stars, asterisks, curly brackets, scribbles, doodles, sketches, even the elegant outline of a hand with a finger or fingers pointing to specific parts of the text, known as a manicule, are all marks of marginalia.

Decoding handwritten annotations

The first image is an example from one of our manuscripts, probably written in France during the eighteenth century. A professional scribe was employed to transcribe Jean de la Fontaine’s Transformation metallique, trois anciens tractez en rithme francoise (Paris: Guillaume Gillard, 1561) and an extract of Le roman de la rose by Jean de Meung (c.1240). The manuscript’s owner has interacted with the text by underlining important passages, inserting a curly bracket to emphasise another passage, writing extensive notes in the margins, and also excising large passages by crossing them out. The reader has also drawn a manicule in the left-hand margin, a name that comes from the Latin maniculum, meaning "little hand”. Manicules originated in the scribal tradition of the medieval and Renaissance period and functioned as punctuation marks to signal corrections or notes. They were later used as a printer’s typographical symbol to mark notes and also act as a means of signifying noteworthy passages and in advertising displays (Houston, 177).

The next item that caught my eye is an edition of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Du contrat social, ou, Principes du droit politique (Strasbourg: De l'Impr. de la Société typographique, 1791). Our edition has an ownership inscription on the front cover that reads, “A. Lewis Parkes” and contains a number of handwritten annotations. Unlike the previous example, in which marginalia accompanies the text throughout, the Rousseau edition has only been annotated on the front and preliminary papers and the endpapers. This particular example also highlights one of the problems inherent in decoding handwritten annotations. Sometimes, the handwriting is extremely difficult to read and its meaning and significance remains opaque. Interpreting marginalia can often prove a tantalising but frustrating and difficult task!

 The last two examples of marginalia are both connected to the author Jonathon Swift. This image is from a pamphlet with a rather interesting lineage. Swift’s pamphlet, The Presbyterians Plea of Merit (1733), attacked the Whig government for their intention to remove the Test Act for dissenters. We hold the anonymously printed reply to Swift’s pamphlet, entitled, A Vindication of the Protestant dissenters (Dublin, Powell: 1733), which contains handwritten notes penned by Jonathon Swift himself as he read the attack upon his work. Unfortunately, some notes were cropped in the binding process but we can immediately see some of his reactions in the margins, including his rebuttals of certain points. These comments were later reworked as part of Swift’s ironic reply, Reasons for repealing the Sacramental Test & c. in favour of the Catholics (1732).

The final example shows an anonymous commentator’s interaction with another of Swift’s pamphlets, The management of the four last years vindicated….(London: J Morphew, 1714). It was written by Swift as a reply to Charles Povey's An inquiry into the miscarriages of the four last years reign (London: Robinson, c.1714). As you can see, the commentator has drawn a manicule, signalling the importance of the passage. There are also underlinings, vertical lines to emphasise a paragraph, comments written next to the printed text, as well as copious notes at the foot of each page. Like previous examples, the handwriting here is difficult to decipher, rendering the task of interpretation problematic. However, for a student or researcher interested in either Swift or the historical period, grappling with difficult marginalia may provide a rich reward.

Studying marginalia can provide a deeper insight into an author and his or her readers as well give a greater appreciation of the wider context in which they wrote. Marginal notes and annotations help make an item unique and offer a glimpse into the lived experience of the book itself. They raise questions of provenance, use, and appreciation. In the digital landscape, we may question whether the process of creating marginalia will continue and what this means for the study of marginalia. We would love to see you in the Special Collections Reading Room deciphering these works or puzzling over other books with accompanying marginalia.



References

Fajkovic, M., & Björneborn, L. (2014). Marginalia as message: Affordances for reader-to-reader communication. Journal of Documentation, 70(5), 902–926. doi:10.1108/jd-07-2013-0096 

Houston, K. (2013). Shady characters: the secret life of punctuation, symbols, & other typographical marks. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.


Jackson, Heather J. (2001).  Marginalia: readers writing in books. New Haven: Yale University Press.






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