Exhibit | The Brown Bear: A History

The Brown Bear: A History

An Exhibit by Peter Mackie ’59, Sports Archivist
Now showing in the Willis Reading Room Cases, John Hay Library
May 22 – August 31, 2017

At the dawn of the 20th century, Brown was thriving. A new president, William H. P. Faunce, was in place; enrollment was approaching 1,000; new buildings were springing up, and a successful $2 million endowment fund campaign had been completed. Brown’s major teams were enjoying a new off-campus facility (Andrews Field) which had supplanted Lincoln Field. Athletics were emerging from the informal club team era under a newly established Director of Physical Education, Frederick W. “Doc” Marvel (1894). Students and alumni were becoming enthralled with intercollegiate athletics, especially with the developing fierce rivalry with Dartmouth.

Click here to view the online exhibit.

The search was on for a mascot to represent Brown and her teams, often called the Hilltoppers by the press. In 1902 a mascot attempt with a burro was a failure, but in 1904 Theodore Francis Green (1887) solved the problem. Annoyed by “painful attempts” of newspaper artists to come up with an appropriate figure to match the Bulldog and Tiger, Green placed the mounted head of a bear labeled THE BROWN BEAR in the Trophy Room of the new student union (Rockefeller Hall – now Faunce House). Green’s idea quickly took hold, and the bear was celebrated in verse, song, and image. In 1905 a live bear was rented for the Dartmouth football game in Springfield, beginning a famous tradition which, despite interruption by two world wars and the Great Depression, continued into the mid-1960’s. Live bear lore abounds with stories which defy contemporary imagination: college hijinks such as “bearnappings” and tragic bear deaths and funerals.

In addition to live bears, students donned bear costumes, a custom which continues to this day with Bruno and his sidekick Cubby, whose identities are kept secret. The first costumed bear was a group effort, when in 1906 at the Dartmouth game a student wrapped in a bear skin arrived in Springfield. In the post-game victory march back to the city, students took turns after each “bear” dropped exhausted in the frenzied swirling snake dance. Campus statuary has also reflected the importance of the Brown Bear to the Brown community. The Bronze Bruno (1927), Fountain Bear (1932), Swearer Bear (1988), and Indomitable (2013), all keep the Brown Bear symbol constantly in view.

The true meaning of the Brown Bear has been the cause of debate since the beginning. For years after its casting in 1923, Bronze Bruno remained in hibernation at Gorham Manufacturing Company while debate raged on about its meaning and proper placement. Today the use of the term Brown Bear extends to men’s and women’s athletic teams, Alumni Brown Bear Awards, and employee BEAR Day, to name a few.

The Brown Bear is deeply embedded in the DNA of Brown’s culture and daily life. Perhaps T. F. Green provides the best understanding of the Bear’s inclusive meaning:

“So our Brown Bear, around which we are now gathered, is a symbol of that Brown spirit which carries its meaning to alumni and undergraduates alike, with various meanings. Some mistake its message as a call of good luck to an athletic team. But its message is rather to carry into all our activities those virtues shown on the athletic field and symbolized in the Brown Bear – the virtues of strength, independence, and courage. May its symbol remind us of the College and keep alive our love and enthusiasm for old Brown.”

Dates: May 22 – August 31, 2017
Time: John Hay Library Hours
Location: Willis Reading Room Cases, John Hay Library, 20 Propsect Street, Providence

New Fellows to Further Research at the John Hay Library in 2017-2018

The John Hay Library will host two research fellows in the coming academic year, with support from the New England Regional Fellowship Consortium. While at the Hay Library, these scholars, whose projects are described in more detail below, will be using little known materials in the holdings of Special Collections in order to further their scholarly research.

Detail from St. Augustine of Hippo, De Ciuitate Dei (1467), Annmary Brown Memorial Collection 203, John Hay Library, showing printed text with hand applied rubrication and illuminated capitals

Renzo Baldasso, an Assistant Professor in the School of Art at Arizona State University, is currently at work on a study of printers in the early decades of the printing press (1453 to 1503 C.E.) — a period commonly known among historians as the incunabula era.  Baldasso’s research aims to discover how these printers “became masters of the page…to develop an independent print aesthetic” that differed from the aesthetic approaches used to produce the handwritten illuminated manuscript. With expertise in both Renaissance art and the history of science, Baldasso is uniquely qualified to undertake this intensive study of rare volumes. He will be focusing his work at the Hay Library on the 600 incunabula in the Annmary Brown Memorial Collection, for which Richard Noble, the Library’s rare books cataloguer, has been diligently working to enhance existing descriptive information.

Selected pages from the papers of Jean Bethke Elshtain (Ms. 2011.039), Feminist Theory Archive, John Hay Library

Alexander Jacobs, a recent PhD and current postdoctoral lecturer in History at Vanderbilt University, works on “the tangled histories and multiple meanings of liberalism and conservatism in modern American thought and politics” — a topic that formed the nucleus of his 2016 doctoral dissertation, Pessimism and Progress, a study of Conservatism within the political Left. While at the Hay Library, he will be looking at manuscript material in the Feminist Theory Archive, focusing in particular on the papers of Jean Bethke Elshtain.

The New England Regional Fellowship Consortium (NERFC) is a growing body of New England cultural institutions which seek to enhance scholarly access to their collections by offering grants for 8 weeks of study in the holdings of at least three of the participating institutions. The program is competitive and attracts scholars working on a broad range of topics. The John Hay Library, a NERFC member since 2014, has previously hosted fellows working on topics such as the fear of nuclear explosion during the Cold War, 19th century panoramic spectacles, and humor in the gay liberation and feminist movements.

Retweets, Shares, and Likes: Increasing the Impact of Research Through the Preservation and Sharing of Data

Justine Allen, Derya Akkaynak (from http://news.brown.edu/articles/2017/05/cuttlefish)

Last week, an article co-authored by Dr. Justine Allen appeared in the scientific journal The American Naturalist. Dr. Allen received her Ph.D. from Brown University in 2014, completing her graduate work under Professor Roger Hanlon at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA. The article describes the behaviors of two male cuttlefish fighting over a female mate, behaviors that were recorded on video and in photographs taken by the authors while on a dive off the coast of Turkey. The video has since been seen tens of thousands of times, demonstrating the impact of research through the preservation and sharing of data.

To view Dr. Allen and her co-authors’ data in the BDR please visit:

Akkaynak, Derya, and Allen, Justine J., “Dramatic fighting by male cuttlefish for a female mate” (2011). Data for Publications. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library.https://doi.org/10.7301/Z0PR7SX4.

In order to analyze the recorded behaviors, the researchers created a scoring guide to document the types and characteristics of the organisms involved and their actions and the duration of the actions at certain timestamps in the film footage and on each still image. Before Dr. Allen and her co-authors submitted their manuscript for peer review and publication, they reached out to Hope Lappen, Biomedical and Life Sciences Librarian, and Andrew Creamer, Scientific Data Management Librarian, to get help with their questions about copyright and licenses for publishing and distributing their data, and for assistance with curating and depositing the files (the video, images, and analysis data underlying their paper’s findings) into an online collection in the Library’s Brown Digital Repository (BDR).

The BDR is the Library’s platform for making digital collections available online. The BDR has a collection called “Data for Publications,” which is an online gallery for Brown researchers to preserve the supplementary materials accompanying their published articles or the data underlying their results and conclusions. The BDR also allows researchers to cite these materials and data in their publications and to make these files available to other researchers and the public online.

Andrew worked with Ann Caldwell, the Library’s Metadata Librarian and Head of Digital Production Services, to plan out the descriptive information for each catalog record associated with their data set and the minimum documentation necessary to interpret the data. This process is iterative and involves collaborating with the authors to collect these details and create their records in the BDR with the aim of facilitating search, discovery, access, and citation of these materials online. Ann’s staff also helped to convert the film and image file formats into ones that are appropriate for long-term preservation.

Upon deposit of the files in the Library’s BDR, Andrew and Ann work with Joseph Rhoads, the BDR’s Manager, and Ben Cail, the BDR’s programmer, to display the files according to the wishes of the researchers. For the cuttlefish paper, the authors wanted to be able to not only preserve the original video and image files in the BDR, but also to stream the video so that readers could view the video from its record the BDR.  After files are uploaded, Joseph and Ben provide the researchers with a URL and a unique identifier, called a digital object identifier (DOI), that they can use to cite these materials within their article so that reviewers of their paper or interested readers can have access to them. By depositing the data in the BDR and citing the data within the paper, the authors allow readers to learn more about the science and judge the rigor and validity of their published findings. This transparency can help move science forward.

So what is the big deal about making these materials public? In short, the answer is impact. Scientists want to spread knowledge and know that their research can resonate with the public. By depositing their video with the Library and citing and sharing their video, Dr. Allen and her co-authors were able to reach more people than they would have through the publication of their article alone. How many more people? One week after publication of the article, their cuttlefish video had been viewed by over 140,000 people online! In addition, the video had been reported on the websites and social media feeds of the New York Times, National Geographic, and Science and reported on the websites and on the Facebook and Twitter and similar social media feeds of media outlets in several countries, including Germany’s Der Spiegel. These posts have been shared, liked, and retweeted by people fascinated with the dramatic events the research team captured on film.

Dr. Allen and her co-authors are not alone. A team of Brown undergraduates led by Dean Adetunji, Associate Dean of the College for Undergraduate Research and Inclusive Science, have deposited the file of a video in the Library’s BDR on the science of seeing color that has also has had over 100,000 views. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the National Science Foundation including broader and societal impact among the review criteria it uses to evaluate grant proposals submitted by researchers. The Library’s BDR plays a crucial role in helping to preserve and disseminate the digital outputs of Brown’s research community, including their broader impact materials that they have created for educating students or the public about their research. Videos, images, software, and documents that could easily be lost after the publication of an article now get cataloged by the Library and put online and discovered, accessed, and cited by other researchers and the public.

Exhibit | La conquista dell’Abissinia (The conquest of Abyssinia)

The John Hay Library has a new acquisition on display in the second floor landing case:

La conquista dell’Abissinia/ The conquest of Abyssinia
Officine dell’Istituto italiano d’arti grafiche/ Office of the Italian Institute of Graphic Arts
Board game (paper and ink)
Milano: Carlo Erba S.A., 1936
Brown University Library, Special Collections

The item will be on display until May 31, 2017.

This Italian board game was created in 1936 by Officine dell’Istituto italiano d’arti grafiche in Bergamo during the Fascist regime of Benito Mussolini in the midst of the Second Italo-Ethiopian War (also referred as the Second Italo-Abyssinian War). The game was printed to advertise products from various Italian companies while spreading colonial propaganda that applauded the expansion of the Kingdom of Italy. This piece featured a powder to make artificial mineral water by the pharmaceutical company Carlo Erba, S.A.

Play is based on the rules of the European “game of the goose,” in which two or more players move pieces along a track of consecutively numbered spaces by rolling one or two dice. La conquista dell’Abissinia is played on a color illustrated sheet against the background of a map of the Ethiopian Empire (also known as Abyssinia). While not depicted, the game pays tribute to Pietro Badoglio, 2nd Duke of Addis Abeba, and his army and their ultimate occupation of the capital of Abyssinia. It consists of 68 numbered spaces representing the Italian flag, the Red Cross, contemporary political figures, and tanks of the Italian armed forces. The goal of the game is to reach the circle numbered 68 before any of the other players by avoiding as many obstacles as possible. It was designed to have a maximum of eight players, each equipped with a small disc representing various divisions of the Italian armed forces (Infantry, Air Force, Blackshirts, Alpine Troops, Corps of Engineers, Tank Division, Askari, or local colonial troops and Dubats or White Turbans). Directions are printed on the upper right corner of the sheet.

Dates: May 1 – May 31, 2017
Time: John Hay Library Hours
Location: Second Floor, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Scalar: Writing Digital Scholarship | Curtis Fletcher

The Library is pleased to host three events in the series, Scalar: Writing Digital Scholarship, this April, 2017. All events will be held in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library.

Curtis Fletcher, Associate Director of the Polymathic Labs at USC Libraries and Co-PI on Scalar

On Thursday, April 27, 2017 at 12 p.m., Curtis Fletcher, Associate Director of the Polymathic Labs at USC Libraries and Co-PI on Scalar, will give a talk entitled, “Beyond the Platform: Enabling and Supporting New Forms of Digital Scholarship.” A reception will follow the talk. Free and open to the public.

Beyond the Platform: Enabling and Supporting New Forms of Digital Scholarship

Fletcher will discuss his experience working on Scalar, an open source authoring and publishing platform designed for media-rich, born-digital scholarship. Highlighting specific Scalar projects, broader use cases, and ongoing development, he will discuss the ways in which the platform’s affordances attempt to move digital scholarly publishing beyond the linear ePub; how emerging scholarly workflows and practices for creating media-rich, archive-connected, scholarship have evolved alongside those affordances; and how the platform’s design relates to broader trends in digital scholarship and the digital humanities.

Curtis Fletcher

Curtis Fletcher is the Associate Director of the Polymathic Labs at USC Libraries and Co-PI on Scalar. His research spans the history of technology, the history of humanities education, science and technology studies, and visual studies. He specializes in digital research and writing in the humanities with particular expertise in new models for authoring, credentialing, and publishing born-digital, multimodal, humanities scholarship. Prior to his work at USC Libraries he was Associate Multimedia Editor for Urban History at Cambridge University Press; Administrative Assistant for the Center for Transformative Scholarship in the Digital Age at USC; and Project Manager for the Alliance for Networking Visual Culture.

These events are part of the Library’s series, The Future of Scholarly Publishing, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Date: Thursday, April 27, 2017
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Previous events in the series:

On Thursday, April 13, Caroline Frank, Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies at Brown, gave a talk entitled,”Paths Across the Pacific: A Scalar Project of East-West Interaction,” during which she discussed her recent Scalar project, “Asia-Pacific in the Making of the Americas.” Professor Frank presented with collaborator Andrea Ledesma, a graduate student in American Studies.

On Tuesday, April 18, Elli Mylonas, Senior Digital Humanities Librarian, hosted an “Introduction to Scalar” workshop.

Event | Omer Bartov Discusses “The Voice of Your Brother’s Blood: Buczacz, Biography of a Town”

Omer Bartov, John P. Birkelund Distinguished Professor of European History and Professor of History and Professor of German Studies

On Wednesday, April 12, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab of the Rockefeller Library, Omer Bartov, John P. Birkelund Distinguished Professor of European History and Professor of German Studies at Brown, will present his new book, The Voice of Your Brother’s Blood: Buczacz, Biography of a Town.

A reception will follow the talk. This event is free and open to the public.

The Voice of Your Brother’s Blood: Buczacz, Biography of a Town

This lecture will discuss how the East Galician town of Buczacz was transformed from a site of coexistence, where Poles, Ukrainians, and Jews had lived side-by-side for centuries, into a site of genocide. Between 1941, when the Germans conquered the region, and 1944, when the Soviets liberated it, the entire Jewish population of Buczacz was murdered by the Nazis, with ample help from local Ukrainians, who then also ethnically cleansed the region of the Polish population. What were the reasons for this instance of communal violence, what were its dynamics, and why has it been erased from the local memory?

Professor Omer Bartov

Born in Israel and educated at Tel Aviv University and St. Antony’s College, Oxford, Omer Bartov’s early research concerned the Nazi indoctrination of the Wehrmacht and the crimes it committed in World War II, analyzed in his books, The Eastern Front, 1941-1945, and Hitler’s Army. He then turned to the links between total war and genocide, discussed in his books Murder in Our Midst, Mirrors of Destruction, and Germany’s War and the Holocaust. Bartov’s interest in representation also led to his study, The “Jew” in Cinema, which examines the recycling of antisemitic stereotypes in film. His monograph, Erased, investigates interethnic relations in the borderlands of Eastern Europe. As a framework for this research, he led a multi-year collaborative project at the Watson Institute, culminating in the co-edited volume, Shatterzone of Empires. Bartov has recently completed a major monograph, The Voice of Your Brother’s Blood: Buczacz, Biography of a Town.

This event is part of the Library’s lecture series, The Holocaust: History and Aftermath.

Date: Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Annual Yoken Lecture | Anka Muhlstein: The Pen and the Brush

Anka Muhlstein in New York City, February 2012

On Tuesday, May 2, 2017 at 5 p.m. in the Lownes Room of the John Hay Library, celebrated French author Anka Muhlstein will deliver the Annual Mel and Cindy Yoken Cultural Series Lecture, entitled, “The Pen and the Brush,” based on Ms. Muhlstein’s recent book, The Pen and the Brush: How Passion for Art Shaped Nineteenth-Century French Novels. This event is free and open to the public. A reception and book signing will follow the talk. The Pen and the Brush will be available for purchase on site.

Anka Muhlstein

Anka Muhlstein was born in Paris in 1935. She has published biographies of Queen Victoria, James de Rothschild, Cavelier de La Salle, and Astolphe de Custine; studies on Catherine de Médicis, Marie de Médicis, and Anne of Austria; a double biography, Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart; and more recently, Monsieur Proust’s Library and Balzac’s Omelette (Other Press). She has won two prizes from the Académie Française and the Goncourt Prize for Biography. She contributes regularly to the New York Review of Books. She and her husband, Louis Begley, have written a book on Venice, Venice for Lovers. They live in New York City.

The Pen and the Brush

The lecture will elaborate on the close friendships and constant borrowings among artists and writers so characteristic of nineteenth-century France, as reflected in the novels of that period. Ms. Muhlstein will concentrate on the relations among three painters, Manet, Cézanne, Renoir, and three novelists, Balzac, Zola, and Proust, to show the influence of painting on their works.

 

Date: Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Time: 5 p.m.
Location: Lownes Room, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Event | Adam Teller: The Power of Memory: Thinking about the Holocaust in Poland from 1945 until Today

Professor Adam Teller

On Tuesday, April 25, 2017 at 6 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab of the Rockefeller Library, Adam Teller, Brown University Associate Professor of History and Associate Professor of Judaic Studies, will give a talk in the Library’s lecture series, The Holocaust: History and Aftermath. This event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the talk.

The Power of Memory: Thinking about the Holocaust in Poland from 1945 until Today

This lecture will examine the ways in which the memory of the Holocaust has developed in Poland over the last 70 years.  It will show both how it was shaped by the changing political climate of the country and how it influenced Poland’s development in the Communist and Post-Communist periods. Based on his research as well as his personal experience in three decades of traveling to Poland, Prof. Teller will also discuss the roles which the memory of the Holocaust has played – and continues to play – in the development of the tortured relationship between Poles and Jews.

Professor Adam Teller

Born in London and educated at Oxford University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Adam Teller specializes in the history of the Jews in eastern Europe. He has published widely on the history of the Jews in early modern Poland-Lithuania. His book, Money, Power, and Influence in Eighteenth Century Lithuania: The Jews on the Radziwiłł Estates, was published by Stanford University Press in 2016. Professor Teller was a member of the core academic team which created the exhibit at the award-winning POLIN Museum for the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw, where he was responsible for two of the Museum’s eight galleries. He is currently a member of the museum’s Academic Advisory Council. Professor Teller is on the editorial board of Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry and is associate editor of Gal-Ed: On the History and Culture of Polish Jewry, published in Tel Aviv.

Date: Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Preservation Week Talk | Preserving a Textile Archive

To celebrate Library Preservation Week, the Brown University Library is hosting a talk about and viewing of textiles from the archives of Rush Hawkins and Annmary Brown.

Please join us in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library on Wednesday, April 26, 2017, from 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. 

The Preservation Department staff will discuss the process for housing and preserving items and Archives staff will discuss the challenges in describing the collection ranging from quilts, clothing, and shoes to fans, parasols, and shawls, predominantly from the 18th and 19th century.
Date: Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Time: 10:30 a.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence

Exhibit | Preparing John Bull for General Congress

Preparing John Bull for General Congress, George Cruikshank (British, 1780-1842); hand-colored etching on wove paper; London: W.N. Jones, August 1, 1813; Brown University Library, Special Collections

From April 3 – 30, 2017, the image, Preparing John Bull for General Congress (1813), will be on display in the second floor landing case of the John Hay Library.

Shown above, the Napoleonic caricature depicts John Bull backed against a tree, which is being hacked to pieces by malevolent pygmies representing Britain’s many pressing domestic and foreign problems. An American gunboat on the left is manned by two disreputable-looking sailors and a captain while flying a tattered Stars and Stripes and the pennant of the frigate USS President. As an enraged, muzzled bulldog representing the Royal Navy looks on, the American captain fires a swivel gun at John Bull’s right leg, representing the West Indies, as he shouts “D[am]n that Bull Dog. The Shannon he has gored the Chesapeake, if the English ministers will but keep him out of our way we’ll pepper the dog.”

At the far right Napoleon sits in front of his tent, his right foot resting on a globe while he cheerfully exclaims, “When you have finished your labors gentlemen bring him to me & I will prepare his epitaph.” The title refers to the Congress of Prague (June 4-August 10, 1813), at which Metternich attempted in vain to negotiate a peace between Napoleon and the Allies.

The print was drawn by George Cruikshank for volume VI of The Scourge, a monthly satirical journal published in London.

Dates: April 3 – April 30, 2017
Time: John Hay Library Hours
Location: Second Floor, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street, Providence, RI