DeGolyer Library

Calendar Highlights: Closing attractions for Commencement 2012

As Spring 2012 finals end and SMU gears up for its 97th Commencement celebration, take note of three remarkable exhibitions that end this weekend. See them before they’re gone:

A portrait of Charles Dickens wearing a tartan waistcoat, photographed by G. Herbert Watkins in 1858

• DeGolyer Library honors the 2012 bicentennial of a literary titan with Charles Dickens: The First 200 Years, featuring more than 200 items from the Stephen Weeks Collection – including all of Dickens’ major works in original editions, as well as prints, drawings, letters, later editions, piracies, translations, adaptations, and advertising ephemera. The exhibit runs through Saturday, May 12, and is free and open to the public.

DeGolyer is open 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and will observe special Saturday hours 9 a.m.-4 p.m. May 12 for visiting SMU parents – including Stephen Weeks, whose daughter Jennifer will graduate from the University this weekend.

Image from Bridwell Library exhibit of religious books for children at SMU• Bridwell Library explores Bibles, psalms, catechisms, instructional works, moral stories, devotional literature and hymnals written and published specifically for youngsters in Four Centuries of Religious Books for Children, on display in the Bridwell’s Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries through Saturday, May 12.

The event is free and open to the public; check the Bridwell Library homepage for gallery hours. An online version will also be on display for the duration of the exhibition.

A detail from the Pastrana TapestriesMeadows Museum offers unprecedented insight into four 15th-century panels of monumental scale and skill that count among the finest surviving Gothic tapestries in existence. The Invention of Glory: Afonso V and the Pastrana Tapestries runs through Sunday, May 13.

Featured exclusively at the Meadows is the armor of Duarte de Almeida, the standard-bearer for Afonso V of Portugal, who is depicted prominently in one of the tapestries. Now housed at the Cathedral of Toledo in Spain, Duarte’s armor is the only relatively complete example of period armor that can be directly related to Portugal.

Also on display are 15th- and 16th-century maps lent by SMU’s DeGolyer Library that not only help to relate how world geography was understood around the time of the tapestries’ creations, but also to establish a context for understanding the feats of exploration led by the Portuguese well before Columbus set sail. Check the Meadows Museum homepage for visiting hours.

Calendar Highlights: Oct. 5, 2011

Archivist of the United States David FerrieroThrough an archivist’s eyes: David Ferriero (right), 10th Archivist of the United States, will give a close-up view of the mission and history of the National Archives with “An Insider’s Perspective: The Mission of the National Archives and the Creation of the George W. Bush Presidential Library” at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 6 in the Mack Grand Ballroom, Umphrey Lee Center. A 6 p.m. reception will precede the lecture. Sponsored by SMU’s DeGolyer Library, Friends of the SMU Libraries/Colophon, Bridwell Library and the Book Club of Texas. For more information contact Cindy Ruppi, 214-768-2253.

Writings on rights: SMU’s Embrey Human Rights Program presents an evening with a group of international refugees, asylum seekers and other forced migrants currently living in North Texas. “Escape to Dallas: Stories of Flight & Survival” will feature readings of original stories and writings by the presenters, who will share their experiences of flight from conflict and political and economic threats, as well as of their resettlement in the Dallas area. The event takes place 7-9 p.m. Oct. 6 in McCord Auditorium, 306 Dallas Hall. Free and open to the public. For more information, contact Sherry Aikman, 214-768-8347, and visit the Refugee Writers blog.

Local discounts: Designer Shoe Warehouse Park Cities has scheduled an SMU appreciation event for 5-9 p.m. Oct. 11, 2011. Present their flier (downloadable in PDF format) to receive 20% off regularly priced items and 10% off clearance merchandise. The store is located at 8335 Westchester Drive in Preston Center.

In McFarlin Auditorium:
• Dr. Temple Grandin, the Colorado State University professor whose life with animals and with autism became a Golden Globe Award-winning HBO movie, will present “An Evening with Temple Grandin: Animals Make Us Human” at 8 p.m. Oct. 6 in McFarlin Auditorium. Presented by Guide Dogs for the Blind and Lone Star Puppy Raisers. Buy tickets online at TicketLeap.

DeGolyer Library exhibit covers 175 years of Texas fiction

Cover of 'A Love Story of Mineral Wells'A new exhibit in SMU’s DeGolyer Library offers samples of Texas fiction spanning 175 years, since before the state became a republic.

“From Live Boys to Lonesome Dove: A Panoramic View of Texas Fiction, 1836- 2011″ begins with a few works that predate Texas Independence, such as L’Heroine du Texas; ou, Voyage de Madame *** aux Etats-Unis et au Mexique. From this fictional account of the French utopian colony at Champ d’Asile, the exhibit proceeds through the antebellum period, the age of the dime novel, local color, romanticism, realism, “westerns,” and the contemporary scene.

DeGolyer promises numerous surprises, such as the first novel printed in Fort Worth, Jo: A Telegraphic Tale (1885), and Mamie Winn’s A Love Story of Mineral Wells, the first (and possibly the last) novel printed in Mineral Wells, 1915.

With more than 200 books on display, from high-brow to low-brow, the exhibition also offers visitors the opportunity to place the work of writers with some measure of literary acclaim (for example, Katherine Anne Porter, William Humphrey, William Goyen, Larry McMurtry, and many others) in historical context.

The exhibit, which is free and open to the public, continues through Dec. 15, 2011. DeGolyer is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, except holidays.

> Watch an SMU News slide show of images from the Texas fiction exhibition slide show

Calendar Highlights: Commencement Week, May 10, 2011

Commencement 2010 assembly photo by Hillsman S. JacksonSave the date: Make plans to attend the 2011 Staff Appreciation Day and President’s Picnic. The annual celebration takes place 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 25, rain or shine. Stay up-to-date on picnic plans at the Staff Association website.

Catch them while you can: Make plans to visit these SMU exhibitions before they close:

Commencement Countdown 2011:

> Learn more at the Registrar’s Commencement 2011 website
> RSVP online for the Faculty Breakfast and Processional
> Read more about U.S. Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the 2011 Commencement speaker

(Right, participants assemble for Commencement 2010. Photo by Hillsman S. Jackson.)

Calendar Highlights: April 5, 2011

Susanne ScholzFound in translation: Is it political correctness or linguistic skill that makes for a good Bible translation? Susanne Scholz (right), associate professor of Old Testament in SMU’s Perkins School of Theology, will discuss “God’s Word as Man’s Word? The Politics of Translating the Sacred Texts of Christianity and Judaism” at 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 5, in the Bridwell Library Benefactors Room. Reception to follow. Free and open to the public; no RSVP required.

Cutting the cord: Writer and scholar Terry Castle – Walter A. Haas Professor in the Humanities at Stanford University and author of National Book Critics Circle Award nominee The Professor and Other Writings – discusses “Becoming an Orphan: Helicopter Parents, Velcro Moms and Self-Education” as part of the 2010-11 Gilbert Lecture Series Thursday, April 7, in DeGolyer Library. A 6 p.m. reception in the Texana Room precedes the 6:30 p.m. lecture in the Stanley Marcus Reading Room. Free and open to the public.

The spiritual network: Author, speaker and activist Brian McLaren will speak on seeking vital connections with God and others in a lecture that springs from his new book, Naked Spirituality: A Life with God in 12 Simple Words. The event includes a book signing session and will take place 2-4 p.m. Saturday, April 9, in the Great Hall, Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Hall. Sponsored by the Center for Missional Wisdom in SMU’s Perkins School of Theology. For more information, contact Rev. Dr. Elaine Heath, 214-768-2167. Learn more about McLaren’s talk from the Perkins website.

Yolande Moreau in 'Seraphine'French Film Festival concludes: The 15th-anniversary celebration of SMU’s French Film Festival continues through April 9, 2011. The final screenings include Indigènes (Days of Glory, 2006) on Wednesday, April 6. César and Lumière award-winning cowriter and director Rachid Bouchareb tells the stories of four North African recruits who fight to liberate France during World War II, as well as for equal treatment in the French military and society. The film will be followed by a discussion with Hervé Tchumkam, assistant professor in Dedman College’s Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures and an expert in French, Francophone, African and postcolonial studies. The festival wraps up Saturday, April 9, with Séraphine (2008), starring César Award-winner Yolande Moreau as painter Séraphine de Senlis, a housekeeper who became one of the most acclaimed naïve artists of the 1920s and ’30s before dying in an insane asylum in 1942. All screenings are at 7 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Theater, and all films will be shown in French with English subtitles. Admission is free and open to the public. These films are intended for an adult audience and may contain sexual content, nudity and violence. Sponsored by the SMU French Club, the SMU Students’ Association and the Tournées Festival. For more information and a complete schedule, visit the 2011 French Film Festival homepage. (Right, Yolande Moreau in Séraphine.)

SMU professor emeritus Darwin Payne gives a centennial history of Mustang sports

Book cover of 'In Honor of the Mustangs'As SMU celebrates the centennial of its founding in 1911 and opening in 1915, the University also is marking 100 years of achievements in athletics through a recently released book, In Honor of the Mustangs.

The first comprehensive history of SMU athletics showcases exploits on the gridiron, from the football team’s infamous 146-3 loss to the Rice Owls in 1916 to its 45-10 victory over Nevada in the 2009 Hawaii Bowl. Also highlighted are achievements in swimming, basketball, volleyball, track and field, cross country, tennis, baseball, and equestrian competition.

The book also looks at athletics in the context of the history of SMU and American higher education in general.

In Honor of the Mustangs was written by professor emeritus of communications and SMU centennial historian Darwin Payne ’68. Photo editor Gerry York ’58, curator of SMU’s Heritage Hall, selected the 650 photographs to illustrate the sports history.

Payne, who received an M.A. in history from SMU and a Ph.D. in American civilization from UT-Austin in 1973, taught journalism at the University for 30 years. He has written extensively about Dallas history and is the author of numerous books, including his most recent, Quest for Justice, a biography of Louis A. Bedford Jr. (SMU Press, 2009).

Payne says that although he had known about SMU athletics and been a sports fan all his life, “I was surprised at the national prominence SMU football teams achieved in the 1920s because of coach Ray Morrison,” Payne says. “The teams’ reliance on the forward pass became a national sensation, popularizing it as an offensive weapon, and SMU was perhaps the first Southwest Conference team to schedule significant intersectional games.

“Although football suffered after the ‘death penalty,’ other SMU sports teams generally thrived, and together they provided the University with one of the best all-round sports programs in the nation for private universities. There were many prominent athletes through the years who largely have been forgotten, and I hope this book will help bring them the attention they deserve.”

The editorial advisory group included Roman Kupchynsky II ’80, president of the Lettermen’s Association; Chuck Hixson ’70, former SMU quarterback and president-elect of the Lettermen’s Association; C. Paul Rogers III, professor of law and faculty athletics representative for SMU since 1987; Joan Gosnell, University archivist; and Russell L. Martin III ’78, director of DeGolyer Library.

Published jointly by the Lettermen’s Association and SMU’s DeGolyer Library, In Honor of the Mustangs costs $55 per copy, including tax and shipping. Make checks payable to “DeGolyer Library, SMU” and note “sports book” on the memo line. Fill out and return the order form (PDF format) to DeGolyer Library, SMU, Dallas TX 75275-0396.

For more information, contact Pam Anderson, 214-768-0829. Copies also are sold at Culwell & Son, across Hillcrest Avenue from SMU’s main campus. For more information, call 214-522-7000.

Written by Susan White for SMU Magazine

> Read the full article from SMU News
> Learn more about the book at the DeGolyer Library website
> Visit SMU Magazine online

Calendar Highlights: Oct. 27, 2010

Charles CurranChurch controversy: SMU’s Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility has promoted the upcoming lecture by Charles Curran as the story of a man raised within the Catholic church who famously clashed with many of its leaders on just about every social issue possible, including premarital sex, masturbation, contraception, abortion, homosexuality, divorce, euthanasia, and in vitro fertilization. The tipping point came for Curran in 1986, where he was ousted from teaching at Catholic University of America schools despite having tenure. (The man responsible for Curran getting the boot? Josef Ratzinger, now known as Pope Benedict XVI.) Curran (right), now SMU’s Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values, speaks about his challenges as a “black sheep” of the Catholic family in “The U.S. Catholic Bishops and Abortion Legislation: A Critique from within the Church” at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 28 in the Hughes-Trigg Ballroom. For more information, call 214-768-4255.

Service of Memory: The University’s annual Service of Memory will take place at noon Thursday, Oct. 28 in Perkins Chapel. The service honors SMU community members who have passed away during the past year and is organized by the Office of the Chaplain and Religious Life and Perkins School of Theology.

A future for books? Bridwell Library, DeGolyer Library and Friends of the SMU Libraries/Colophon are hosting a special lecture by the Director of Rare Book School and University of Virginia professor Michael F. Suarez, S. J. on the future stock of old-fashioned books and their “digital surrogate” replacements. In this lecture, Suarez will show the ways in which our changing technological and cultural times are determining the way we view text formation and comprehension itself. The lecture is at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 28 in the Great Hall, Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Hall. Free parking is available for this event only in the Meadows Museum Parking Garage. Attendance is free, but RSVPs are required – respond online or call 214-768-3483.

Prado at the Meadows logoSpanish flair: SMU’s Meadows Museum hosts a faculty/staff reception celebrating its “Prado at the Meadows” partnership with Madrid’s renowned Prado Museum. Freixenet wines, hors d’oeuvres and Spanish guitar music will be provided. The party is scheduled for 4:30-6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29 in the Museum.

Modern MSO: SMU’s Meadows Symphony Orchestra takes a stroll through more (relatively) modern composers for its second show of the season, with pieces by Soviet-born Giya Kancheli, French composer Henri Tomasi, and Czech composer Antonin Dvorak. Dallas Symphony player and faculty member John Kitzman is the featured trombone soloist on the Tomasi piece, aptly titled Concerto for Trombone. The performances begin at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29 and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 31. Tickets are $7 for SMU faculty, staff and students. For more information call 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).

Calendar Highlights: Sept. 21, 2010

Map of Texas, 1830sHistory for lunch: The Clements Center for Southwest Studies will focus on one of Texas’ more memorable moments in this week’s Brown Bag Lecture, “Privileges of Locomotion: Expatriation and American Power in the Southwestern Borderlands.” (Pictured right, a map of 1830s-era Texas.) Assistant Professor of History at UT-Dallas Eric Schlereth will give the one-hour lecture at noon Sept. 22 in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. Bring your lunch.

‘Revolution’-ary exhibit: The Clements Center for Southwest Studies continues its busy week as it opens its newest exhibit, “Mexico: Porfiriato to Revolution, 1876-1920.” The opening will be punctuated by UNT professor of Mexican and Latin American History Aaron Navarro, who will deliver a lecture on “The Porfirian Cycle in Mexican History.” The lecture and opening are scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Sept. 23 in SMU’s DeGolyer Library. A reception will precede the lecture at 6 p.m. For more information, call 214-768-3231 or visit the DeGolyer website.

So much for resale value: The Gilbert Lecture Series continues with an entry on, well, kids writing in their books. Current Dean of Arts and Humanities at UC-San Diego Seth Lerer gives a unique lecture on how the act of children writing in their books has led to some rather unusual studies in literacy rate, self-ownership, and the never-ending potential of creating young writers from modern times back to medieval history. The lecture will begin at 5 p.m. Sept. 24 in McCord Auditorium, Dallas Hall. For more information, visit the Gilbert Lecture Series page.

Saul Levine filmstripMSO returns: SMU’s Meadows Symphony Orchestra will open its season this weekend with a wildly varied study of three different composers. Included in the lineup is Meadows Professor of Music Paul Phillips‘ recent work Midday, Rachmaninoff’s tribute to a Romantic violinist hero, Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, and Brahm’s final symphony, the Symphony No. 4. The performances are at 8 p.m. Sept. 25 and 3 p.m. Sept 26 in Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center. Tickets are $7 for SMU faculty, staff, and students. For more information, call 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).

It’s the arts: The Taste Series continues with an ongoing look at “New York Avant-Garde Film, 1950-80.” The series’ films are presented exclusively on 16mm prints on loan from The Filmmakers’ Cooperative in New York City. This showcase includes works by George Landow, Saul Levine, David Brooks, Bruce Baillie and Shirley Clarke. Next up: screenings of Stan Brakhage‘s Dog Star Man and Cat’s Cradle at 7 p.m. Sept. 27 in the Greer Garson Screening Room 3527, third floor, Owen Arts Center. Admission is free. For more information, call 214-768-2129. (Right, a filmstrip sample of Saul Levine’s work.)

Weber to give last public lecture as SMU professor April 27

'Fiasco' book coverDavid Weber will give his last public lecture as an SMU professor April 27. Weber, the Robert and Nancy Dedman Professor of History and director of the Clements Center for Southwest Studies in SMU’s Dedman College, retires in May 2010 and will take a sabbatical year after that.

Weber and co-editor Jane Lenz Elder, reference librarian in SMU’s Bridwell Library, will talk about their latest collaboration, Fiasco: George Clinton Gardner’s Correspondence from the U.S.-Mexico Boundary Survey, 1849-1854, recently published by SMU Press.

Gardner’s previously unpublished personal letters, written mostly to family, offer a fresh vantage point on the survey party’s logistical and financial problems, the quarrels among its civilian and military members, the personal and political rivalries of leading figures, and the personal foibles and inadequate funding that turned the work of the U.S. survey team into a catastrophic failure.

The event begins with a reception at 6 p.m., followed by a 6:30 p.m. lecture and book signing, in DeGolyer Library.

The event is free and open to the public; registration is required. Find more information and register online, or contact the Clements Center, 214-768-3684.

The envelope, please: SMU’s role in preserving Oscar history

1942 Oscar ceremony photoWhile Hollywood prepares to celebrate the 82nd annual Academy Awards March 7, 2010, North Texas can look to SMU to find priceless pieces of Oscar history.

SMU library collections include almost 70 years of Academy Award history, such as Greer Garson‘s 1942 Oscar for “Mrs. Miniver,” four 1951 Academy Award envelopes (complete with red seals and winners’ names), and Horton Foote‘s original screenplay and dialogue notes for his 1983 Oscar-winning screenplay, “Tender Mercies.”

“I’ll never forget that when Mr. Foote came to SMU in 2003 to receive an honorary degree, we had displayed some of the early manuscripts of his play, The Trip to Bountiful,” says Russell Martin, DeGolyer Library director.” He looked at the pages on view in the exhibit case and said, ‘I think I’ll change that. I think I can make it better.’ And so it goes: Literary manuscripts are tangible links to the writer and the creative process. When researchers study such materials at SMU, they help advance our understanding and appreciation of literary works.”

The ephemera from past Oscar ceremonies represent aspects of the physical culture of the Hollywood industry – one of the most influential facets of American society and global culture in the 20th century, says Rick Worland, professor of cinema-television in SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts.

“Everyone knows the catch-phrase, ‘The envelope, please.’ To actually have several of the envelopes from the 1951 ceremony, literally fished out of a trash can, might seem cultish or just dumb,” Worland adds. “But being able to see ephemeral objects such as this can help bring the bit of cultural history alive for people from now on.”

(Above, Greer Garson – left center – at the 1942 Academy Awards with, left to right, Van Heflin, Teresa Wright and James Cagney.)

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