The Books that Created Dracula

Some excellent detective work on the origins of Dracula!

“The London Library today unveiled a fascinating discovery that sheds new light on how Dracula was researched and written. We’ve found 26 books that are almost certainly the original copies that Bram Stoker used to help research his enduring classic.

Philip Spedding, the Library’s Development Director who made the discovery, commented: “Bram Stoker was a member of The London Library but until now we have had no indication whether or how he used our collection. Today’s discovery changes that and we can establish beyond reasonable doubt that numerous books still on our shelves are the very copies that he was using to help write and research his masterpiece.” (See London Library’s “The Books that Created Dracula“)

Philip Spedding looks at the books discovered in The London Library that were used by Bram Stoker to research Dracula

The Books that Created Dracula

The Books That Created Dracula from The London Library on Vimeo.

The Bottomless Pinocchio, Misinformation, and the Fight for Truth

Since yesterday’s post about the War on Truth, a few more items have come our way.

First, the Washington Post’s fact-checkers have introduced a new category called “the Bottomless Pinocchio” for constantly repeated false claims. Take a look a the video below or visit this article,
“Meet the Bottomless Pinocchio, a new rating for a false claim repeated over and over again”.

Second, the first episode of the (Mis)Informed Podcast has been released. This focuses on fact-checking political sources. You can listen at the player below or read more here, “(Mis)informed podcast: Who is fact-checking actually for?”

The Botomless Pinocchio:

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(Mis)Informed Podcast:

The War on Truth! Defending Free & Open Journalism

Librarians and journalists share many values. Namely, the belief that free and open information is vital to democracy and an open society. This week a few, year-end announcements from our colleagues in the world of journalism were made that should be highlighted.

First, Time magazine announced that their person (people) of the year is “the Guardians and the War on Truth.”
The video pasted below outlines those involved.

Second, PolitiFact announced their “Lie of the Year” which is the online smear machine trying to take down Parkland students.
Finally, PolitiFact also released “Trump’s 10 top falsehood of 2018” which offers an interesting perspective into our current political landscape.

Here’s the video from Time:

Your Apps Know Where You Were Last Night…and They are Selling It

You are being watched!!

The New York Times has a great interactive piece online today that details ways that your apps are tracking you and then selling your location data to advertisers. The level of detail is frightening. You can find the story here:  Your Apps Know Where You Were Last Night, and They’re Not Keeping It Secret

You can learn more about the background to this story on the podcast “The Daily” here:

The Business of Selling Your Location
Smartphone apps track a staggering amount of data about our whereabouts every day. That data has become a hot commodity.
“A New York Times investigation has found that the information being collected about us through apps on our smartphones is far more extensive than most of us imagine — or are aware we have consented to.”

If you want to better control what your apps know about you check out: How to Stop Apps From Tracking Your Location. 

Happy 200th Birthday, Illinois: A Progress Report on the Preamble of the State Constitution

The preamble of the Illinois state constitution talks about the maintenance of the health, safety and welfare of its citizens through a representative and orderly government. It aims to eliminate poverty and inequality, provide social and economic justice, and the fullest development of the individual. What grade does the state of Illinois deserve for their performance in this 200th year, particularly with regard to its “orderly” government? Professor of History, Political Science and Sociology Merri Fefles and Political Science Professor Kevin Navratil will lead a discussion examining these and other topics. The event is part of our campus programming to commemorate the Illinois bicentennial and sponsored by the Democracy Commitment.

Happy 200th Birthday, Illinois: A Progress Report on the Preamble of the State Constitution

The audio of this discussion is available below:

Remembering President George H.W. Bush

On November 30th, the 41st President, George H.W. Bush passed away. As the nation remembers his years in office, take a look at these resources.

Here are a some biographies:
George Bush : the life of a Lone Star Yankee by Herbert S. Parmet

41 : a portrait of my father by George W. Bush (The 43rd President writes a biography of his father, the 41st President.)

George H.W. Bush by Timothy Naftali

Also, here is a discussion from the NPR Politics Podcast:

Report from the Frontlines: USPCN Delegation to Palestine

The US Palestinian Community Network as shares reports from their all Palestinian & Arab delegation to Palestine this summer. Their reports will focus on answering: Who are the leading organizations in Palestine defending political prisoners, preserving culture, resisting land theft, and more? What are the increasingly repressive conditions they face from Israeli occupiers? And how can we support them?

Report from the Frontlines: USPCN Delegation to Palestine

The audio of this discussion is available below:

Rescheduled! Award Winning Author of Ms. Marvel, G. Willow Wilson, Visits Moraine Valley

We are excited to announce these rescheduled events!
G. Willow Wilson, writer of the award winning Ms. Marvel, will be giving two talks at Moraine Valley Community College. Both events are free and open to the public.

April 10, 2018, 1pm, Dorothy Menker Theater (Building F)
April 11,, 2018, 7 pm – 8:30 pm, Dorothy Menker Theater (Building F)

Made possible by a grant from the Association of Performing Arts Professionals; Building Bridges: Arts Culture and Identity, a component of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

2018 Election Analysis: A Democracy Hour Event

The 2018 Election was one of the most pivotal mid-term elections in history. It flipped control of the House of Representatives, as well as which party controls the statehouse across dozens of U.S. states. Professor of History, Political Science and Sociology Merri Fefles and Political Science Professor Deron Schreck will analyze the 2018 Election and discuss the implications of the election results. This event is organized by the Democracy Commitment.

Democracy Hour Presents 2018 Election Analysis

The audio of this discussion is available below: