Hillcroft LRC

Posts Tagged ‘literature

Working in the LRC means that the team enjoys books and encourages wide reading in all formats and genres –  illustrated and plain text; digital and print; long and short. Yet even I must admit I put down the grand epic ‘War and Peace‘ because it was just too long. According to this literature infographic, it would take you somewhere upwards of 32 hours to read that novel.

If you are up for a challenging read but don’t have much time, many of the most famous authors also wrote novellas. Novellas are short fiction which are often realistic or satirical (See the Encyclopaedia Britannica entry). They are much like short stories and influenced that concise genre of writing. They would probably only take one or two hours to read. Quick wins! It’s not about how fast you read something or whether you finish a book. Novellas may also lead you onto authors whose style you enjoy and can read their longer works.

In libraries novellas and short stories are included with fiction and modern literature shelves. We have stickers on the spines to show you they are short stories. You could try reading Alice Munro’s work for instance. We have Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage in the LRC.

Novellas and short stories could have a shelf for themselves with appropriate signage. Like our Quick Reads shelf. The advantage would be speed. It would be much quicker to locate. Also you would be able to browse a whole shelf of novellas and short stories in a short time to find something you would like to read. What do you think? Do you have time to read a short story or novella?

Which of these prize-winning novellas would you like to read?

Trois Femmes Puissantes Three Strong Women by Marie NDiayeHillcroft students have commented in their feedback surveys that they’d like to learn about other cultures. BBC Radio 4’s focus on European literature can help them and you learn more about European nations’ fiction through their Reading Europe set of programmes.

On Sunday 8 February @ 1500 you can catch Radio 4 turning contemporary European literature into radio plays. The first one is France: Three Powerful Women by Marie NDiaye who was the first Black woman to win the French literary prize the Prix Goncourt. This is an inspirational tale of 3 different women grappling with their lives. Nora who’s forced to go back to her father in Dakar to help him when he abandoned her as a child. Fanta who’s left her life behind in Senegal is abused by her husband Rudy. Khady leaves Africa to find Fanta having lost her husband who has died. Her husband’s family send her to on a journey to find Khady.

If you are keen on world literature then you might to take a look at the BBC World Service’s World Book Club. There are highlights from programmes on current day authors and podcasts.

 

Gothic literature and Angela Carter coversOur Access to Higher Education Humanities and Social Science students are studying Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber and other novels on a Gothic theme. We’ve already supplied them with the Company of Wolves film on DVD and copies of Gothic Literature and  The Fiction of Angela Carter: a Reader’s Essential Criticism by Sarah Gamble and Gothic Literature by Sue Chaplin. Both the BBC and the British Library are launching a focus of programmes and exhibition around the gothic.

Terror and Wonder: the Gothic Imagination from 3 October 2014 to 30 January 2015 at the British Library looks at Gothic literature, film and design influences from early literature by Walpole and Shelley to the films of Stanley Kubrick and the designs of Alexander McQueen. The British Library also has a page dedicated to Gothic Literature.

The BBC is starting a season called When Gothic Was Born. BBC4 begins next week with Andrew Graham-Dixon’s programme The Art of Gothic: Britain’s Midnight Hour on Monday 20 October @ 2100 followed by Dan Cruickshank on the architecture of Sir George Gilbert Scott and Giles Gilbert Scott  in Dan Cruickshank and the Family That Built Gothic Britain on Tuesday 21 October @ 2100. The season also covers film too.

 

 

Bailey Women's Prize for Fiction booksWe added one more book from the the Bailey Women’s Prize for Fiction nominees to our shelves this week:

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

Take a look at the shortlisted books as a reminder. We’ve already added this one by Jnumpa Lahiri to our collection from the shortlist:

The Lowland by Jnumpa Lahiri

and from the longlist:

The Shadow of the Crescent Moon by Fatima Bhutto

We also submitted some of our students for the national prize draw for completing the 2014 Six Book Challenge. Our students could win a free weekend trip to London with a friend or Kobo ereaders. Visit the Reading Agency’s About the Six Book Challenge to discover what it entails.

If you’re like our students and just getting back into reading the Reading Agency’s Find a Read page is handy for choosing books that interest you to suit your reading level.

Much Ado About Nothing and Shakespeare, Feminism and Gender coversOur Access to Higher Education students are in the process of writing assignments on Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing at present.

Each student is researching away trying to find new sources and angles on the play and its themes to stand out from the others. Whilst we’ve got an ebook version of a  Harold Bloom’s literacy criticism Much Ado About Nothing to help them we’ve also got a copy of Kate Chedgzoy’s Shakespeare, Feminism and Gender which looks at the role and view of women in the play.

While working with them in Learning Zone this week and discussing the role of Hero in the play and the significance of her name our Learning Resource Centre (LRC) staff member suggested they might find something interesting about it on Britannica Online. As well as using the literature dictionaries we have. Britannica came up trumps with a reference to Greek mythology.

As a librarian our Learning Resource Centre team member found yet again by thinking laterally about the sources you could use for an assignment on Shakespeare it was possible to get a different angle on the play without spending hours running Google searches to find a quality and useful source to impress…

Woman spinning fireMarch is Women’s History Month and 8 March is International Women’s Day. As a women’s college we like to look out for events coming up to inspire women over these festivities and beyond.

The Women of the World (WoW) festival at London’s Southbank Centre runs from 6-10 March.

It’s ticketed and  includes events, debates and activities. Guest speakers include Naomi Woolf, Alice Walker, Ahdaf Souief, Sarah Brown, Sandi Toksvig and many more. There’s also a speed mentoring session. Take a look at the WoW Festival website for more information.

There are also a number of free events in East and Southeast London too. These include exhibitions at local art galleries and museums. You can find a listing of these on the Alternative Arts Women’s History Month page.


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