COD Library Blog

Freedom Rider Traveling Exhibit

Image of civil rights bus burningAmerican Experience has partnered with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to create a traveling exhibit that tells the story of the 1961 Freedom Rides. A detailed narrative of the Rides is illustrated with vivid archival photos and newspaper clippings that document this pivotal event in the Civil Rights Movement.

The self-proclaimed "Freedom Riders" challenged the mores of a racially segregated society by performing a disarmingly simple act—traveling together in small interracial groups, and sitting where they pleased on buses and trains. Demanding unrestricted access to terminal restaurants and waiting rooms, they were met with bitter racism, mob violence, and imprisonment along the way. But their courage and sacrifice over eight months in 1961 changed America forever.

The exhibit is located on the Library's upper level near our upper circulation desk and entrance. It will remain in the Library through February 26.

For the full Black History Month calendar and full descriptions of events, visit the COD Black History Month website. To learn more about African-American history, visit the Library's African-American History research guide.

Beyond the Canon: Contemporary Black Literature

BlackLit.pngExpand your reading horizons beyond the African American canon with books from contemporary black voices.
These works range from essays and genre fiction, to poetry and plays.
All are available at the COD Library or through I-Share.

Jeffery Renard Allen
Song of the Shank
In 1866 as Tom and his guardian, Eliza Bethune, struggle to adjust to their fashionable apartment in the city in the aftermath of riots that had driven them away a few years before. But soon a stranger arrives from the mysterious island of Edgemere, inhabited solely by African settlers and black refugees from the war and riots, who intends to reunite Tom with his now-liberated mother.

Paul Beatty
The Sellout
A biting satire about a young man's isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court, The Sellout challenges the sacred tenets of the United States Constitution, urban life, the civil rights movement, the father-son relationship, and the holy grail of racial equality―the black Chinese restaurant.

Octavia Butler
Dana, a modern black woman, is celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her new husband when she is snatched abruptly from her home in California and transported to the antebellum South.

Parable of the Talents
Lauren Olamina's love is divided among her young daughter, her community, and the revelation that led Lauren to found a new faith that teaches "God Is Change". But in the wake of environmental and economic chaos, the U.S. government turns a blind eye to violent bigots who consider the mere existence of a black female leader a threat.

Stephen L. Carter
The Emperor of Ocean Park
The complex story of family with links to crime. The novel is set amongst the African American society of the eastern seaboard and the inner circle of an Ivy League law school.

Danielle Evans
Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self
Fearless, funny, and ultimately tender, Evans's stories offer a bold new perspective on the experience of being young and African-American or mixed-race in modern-day America.

Percival Everett
God's Country
Everett's "comic and fierce"* novel of the Old West. The unlikely narrator through this tale of misadventures is one Curt Marder: gambler, drinker, cheat, and would-be womanizer. It's 1871, and he's lost his farm, his wife, and his dog to a band of marauding hooligans.

A blistering satire about race and writing, Novelist, college professor, woodworker, and fly fisherman, Thelonious (Monk) Ellison has never allowed race to define his identity. But he is offended and angered by the success of We's Lives in Da Ghetto, the exploitative debut novel of a young, middle-class black woman who once visited "some relatives in Harlem for a couple of days."

Roxane Gay
An Untamed State
Mireille Duval Jameson is a rich and self-assured Haitian woman who is kidnapped by a gang of heavily armed men. Held captive by a man who calls himself the Commander, Mireille must endure his torment until her unwilling father pays up.

Bad Feminist: Essays
Bad Feminist is a sharp, funny, and spot-on look at the ways in which the culture we consume becomes who we are, and an inspiring call-to-arms of all the ways we still need to do better.

Samantha Irby
Meaty: Essays
Chicago-based blogger Samantha Irby explodes onto the printed page with her debut collection of brand-new essays about trying to laugh her way through failed relationships, being black, taco feasts, bouts with Crohn's disease, and more.

Edward P. Jones
The Known World
When a plantation proprietor and former slave--now possessing slaves of his own--dies, his household falls apart in the wake of a slave rebellion and corrupt underpaid patrollers who enable free black people to be sold into slavery.

Martha Southgate
The Taste of Salt
Josie Henderson is most at home in and around water, and as a senior-level black female scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, she is practically alone in her field. But in building this impressive life for herself, she has tried to shed the one thing she cannot: her family roots back in Cleveland.

Baratunde Thurston
How to Be Black
The Onion’s Baratunde Thurston shares his 30-plus years of expertise in being black, with helpful essays like “How to Be the Black Friend,” “How to Speak for All Black People,” “How To Celebrate Black History Month,” and more, in this satirical guide to race issues—written for black people and those who love them.

ZZ Packer
Drinking Coffee Elsewhere
Packer dazzles with her command of language, surprising and delighting us with unexpected turns and indelible images, as she takes us into the lives of characters on the periphery, unsure of where they belong.

Colson Whitehead
Zone One
Mark Spitz and his squad of three "sweepers" move through Zone One of lower Manhattan, a walled-off enclave scheduled for resettlement in the aftermath of a zombie plague.

Sag Harbor
Benji, one of the only black kids at an elite prep school in Manhattan, tries desperately to fit in, but every summer, he and his brother, Reggie, escape to the East End of Sag Harbor, where a small community of African American professionals has built aworld of is own.

Zika, Flint Water, and More

Welcome back! Curious to know more about some of the top science headlines in the news? Look for stories and sources below.

The CDC recently released a travel warning about traveling to countries impacted by Zika. This NIH blog article depicts our best guesses as to how the sickness will spread, a summary of past research into the disease, and ends with some great research article links for more information.

As we've all heard in the news, the contamination of Flint's drinking water remains a source of controversy. Want to read through the scientific sources? The EPA has released documents here. The Virginia Tech team that also studied the water has put together a website complete with testing results, articles in press and other interesting information.

In happier news, mathematicians announced the discovery of a new prime number over break. Find out more of the history of prime numbers on this website or at length in Prime Obsession.

Finally, 4 new elements were added to the periodic table over break. Learn more about elements 113, 115, 117 and 118 in this NPR article. You can also learn more about some of the elements in the periodic table in The Disappearing Spoon and more about the table itself in A Well-Ordered Thing.


Black History Month @ COD

Black History MonthJoin the COD Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion for the Black History Month 2016 Opening Celebration on Tuesday, Feb. 2, from 12 noon to 1 pm, in the Student Services Center (SSC) Atrium. This celebration will kick off a month long series of events and activities titled Black Variations: Voice and Vision.

For the full Black History Month calendar and full descriptions of events, visit the COD Black History Month website.

To learn more about African-American history, visit the Library's African-American History research guide.

Winter Break Hours & Closings

Winter in DuPage county sceneThe Library will be closed and have reduced hours over COD's Winter Break between Dec. 19 and Jan. 22.

The full list of closings and reduced hours is as follows:

  • Saturday, Dec. 19, and Sunday, Dec. 20: Closed
  • Monday, Dec. 21: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Dec. 22: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Wednesday, Dec. 23: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Thursday, Dec. 24, through Sunday, Jan. 3: Closed
  • Monday, Jan. 4, - Friday, Jan. 8: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Saturday, Jan. 9, and Sunday, Jan. 10: Closed
  • Monday, Jan. 11, - Thursday, Jan. 14: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Friday, Jan. 15: Closed for In-Service Activities
  • Saturday, Jan. 16, and Sunday, Jan. 17: Closed
  • Monday, Jan. 18: Closed for Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday
  • Tuesday, Jan. 19, - Thursday, Jan. 21: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Friday, Jan. 22: Regular Spring hours begin

For more information, see the Library's Hours & Closings page.

Have a safe and restful break!

Photo credit: Tom Gill (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

(Yet Another) New Dinosaur Discovery!

Researchers from George Washington University and the Chinese Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology have just discovered a new plant-eating dinosaur, the Hualianceratops wucaiwanensis, which the NSF says would be about the size of a spaniel and cousin to a triceratops.

This is only one of several dinosaur discoveries in 2015.

Want to know more about current dinosaur theories? We have some new books on the topic that you might like to read:

Science Direct and Academic Search Complete also have a number of good articles about current developments.

Questions? Contact me.


Extended Study Hours

Extended Library Hours, Dec. 6 - Dec. 17To help you prepare for the end of the semester, the Library will have extended hours from Dec. 6 through Dec. 17. The hours are as follow:

  • Sunday, Dec. 6: 12 noon - 11 pm
  • Monday, Dec. 7: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Tuesday, Dec. 8: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Wednesday, Dec. 9: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Thursday, Dec. 10: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Friday, Dec. 11: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Saturday, Dec. 12: 9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Sunday, Dec. 13:12 noon - 11 pm
  • Monday, Dec. 14: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Tuesday, Dec. 15: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Wednesday, Dec. 16: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Thursday, Dec. 17: 7:30 am - 11 pm
  • Friday, Dec. 19: Normal hours (7:30 am - 4:30 pm)

See the Library hours page for more details.

Good luck on your finals!

Silent Computer Lab Opens

Need a quiet space to work on a paper, or do research? The Library has opened room 2030 as a silent computer lab for the last two weeks of normal classes. The lab will be open Monday through Friday, from 9 am until 3 pm, from November 30 through December 11.

To get to the computer lab, head to the second floor of the SRC. The lab is just behind the stairs to the third level. You'll be able to print to the normal library printers as well.

Struggling to find sources for your projects or to figure out how to narrow your topic, or just have a general question? Head to the library reference desks on each floor of the library, email us, or chat.

Good luck with your classes, and we'll see you this spring!

Digital Tattoo Workshop

Digital tattoo logoAs part of the Library's SOS Workshop series, a free "Digital Tattoo " workshop will be offered today at 2 p.m., in Library classroom SRC 2024.

Much like a real tattoo, the content you post online is seen by more people and stays around longer than you imagine. Attend this session to learn how to manage your “digital tattoo.” Topics covered will include online privacy, security, digital ethics and digital citizenship.

Room SRC 2024 is on the Library's main level. The session lasts about an hour. No signup required.