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Blog Posts by Subject: News Media, Journalism and Publishing

Freedom of Information Day at SIBL - March 16, 2011

March 16th is the birthday of James Madison, and because of his role as advocate for openness in government that date is celebrated by many different organizations, including the New York Public Library at SIBL, as Freedom of Information Day.

This year, SIBL is fortunate to have as guest presenter at our

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Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism 2011

Ryan Haley, Billy Parrott, Erminio D'Onofrio, Karen VanWestering, Jennifer Craft, and Maira Liriano with the 2011 Bernstein Award finalistsThe Library’s Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism was established in 1987, through a gift from Joseph Frank Bernstein to the New York Public Library, in honor of journalist Helen Bernstein (now Helen Bernstein Fealy). The gift was in two parts and the idea was to focus on Helen’s love and appreciation of the crucial role that journalism and 

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PressDisplay: An International, Virtual Newsstand

Gone are the days of newsstands on every corner with titles reflecting the vibrant international community of readers in New York City. Gone are the newsstands, but not the readers. New York City is home to 2.9 million foreign-born residents, many of whom still want to read the newspapers of their home country. To that end, the New York Public Library is pleased to offer PressDisplay at all NYPL locations and to all 

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CRW Students Share Their Stories for Immigrant Heritage Week

In honor of Immigrant Heritage Week, students at 3 of the Centers for Reading and Writing spent the day at Mid-Manhattan Library recording their personal stories with Storycorps, a national oral history project, started 8 years ago. 

Jahara Drammeh (Aguilar CRW student), John, the Storycorps facilitator, and Steven Kopstein, (Aguilar Tutor) chatting before the interview 

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Candide in New York (or the Problem of Evil)

In 2003 I began work on an edition of Candide for Broadview Press that was published in 2009. For the cover image, I suggested a photograph of the twin towers in flames. I also had an idea for an image to balance it on the back cover: the famous snap from Abu Ghraib of a hooded man standing on a box, arms outstretched and apparently in mortal fear of electrocution. If you find that poor taste, or cannot conceive of why I would choose those images, please read on.

Though it is a comedy, Candide is also about what 

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Noting Candide at 250

Frontispiece of the 2006 Project Gutenberg copy of 'Candide,' taken from 1918 Modern Library editionType "Candide Gutenberg" into Google and you will swiftly find your way to a delightful English translation of Voltaire's wonderful work. It would cost you a whole $1.50 to get the same text on paper, in the remarkably inexpensive Dover Thrift Editions series. Spend $500 on a new iPad and you can get the Gutenberg version practically for free! Why bother going anywhere else?

Well, first, compare 

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Voltaire's 'Candide' as Media Event

The title page of the [Geneva] 1759 true first edition (NYPL Digital Gallery)To say that Candide enjoyed an immediate success is an understatement. Candide was a phenomenon. The novel was published through the medium of print, a fact which we too easily take for granted. The print world of the eighteenth century was unlike our own and posed two particular challenges.

The first was censorship. England enjoyed a fairly free press, but most European countries had various systems for controlling the 

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Is Feminism Dead?

Working as an archivist I often come across collection items that change the way I see the world around me. I had such an experience recently when processing a manuscript collection. As I sorted through the papers of a woman who had donated her papers to the library, an article title caught my eye, “Is Feminism Dead?”

Those who are interested in the Feminist movement will remember the Time magazine cover from 1998 that asked this question, featuring the images of four women across a stark black 

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Double Take

It seems that my idea of Richard Bruce Cheney as a two dimensional nefarious character was hardly original, but this manifestation of others’ lack of imagination is mind boggling. Exhibit A, the cover for Charlie Savage’s Takeover:

Exhibit B, the cover for Barton Gellman’s Angler:

Hat-tip to the Bernstein selection committee 

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Premiere Issues Magazine Archive: A dream come true!

Want to know when a journal’s first issue was published? What that issue # 1 looked like? Need to track down the editor for those impossible to find back issues? Discover what new titles are missing from the collection?

Premiere Issues: An Archive of Magazine Firsts answers these questions and many more that persistently plague serials librarians. The site’s mission “to provide a home for those first issues to live, be read and shared by an international audience,” was 

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"There was only one catch. . ."

“There was only one catch and that was Catch-22”

Books can accumulate a lot of personal baggage. Keep them in your life for long enough, and they’re likely to become encrusted with memories. This dust jacket is from my personal copy of Catch-22 and goes back a long way, as you can tell from the $2.45 price drastically marked down to $2.19. This was the second and more durable copy I owned after I read ragged the more familiar blue paperback with the dancing airman on the cover. The library’s copy in the

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Alvin Lustig

A few days ago, I remembered that I liked Design Observer—a collective blog that occasionally includes posts from the great Steven Heller. Anyway, there was a post or a link or some other worm hole a few months ago that led to a Flickr page of book covers designed by Alvin Lustig for New Directions in the late 1940’s. 

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Periodically Speaking tonight with journals Bidoun, Many Mountains Moving and Washington Square

What better way to kick off your election night then an evening in the DeWitt Wallace Periodical Room – relax, listen to great new writers introduced by their editors, join us for a glass of wine afterward, all still with plenty of time to catch the election results. The line up begins with Editor Thaddeus Rutkowski (Many Mountains Moving) introducing fiction writer Jon Swan, followed by Levi Rubeck

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Periodically Speaking returns with Slice, Inkwell and Review: Literature and Arts of the Americas

Literary magazine aficionados, myself included, will meet up in the DeWitt Wallace Periodical Room at HSSL as Periodically Speaking returns on Tuesday, October 14th. It’s a thrill to begin our 4th season hosting the series, which aims to connect editors, writers, readers, librarians, and lovers of literature & lit mags with each other, and the Library’s one-of-a-kind collection. Each evening highlights three periodicals, with editors of each introducing an emerging writer. The cool 

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