Author Archives: Sreerag Marar

SciFi Book Club to discuss “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?”

The Science Fiction Book Club has selected Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick as their first read of the Spring semester. The book takes place in 2021, years after the war to end all wars has made Earth practically uninhabitable and most people have moved to Mars. To encourage people to move, each person gets their very own human-like android, but some androids are escaping back to Earth. The main character, Rick, hunts down these rogue androids in the hopes of getting enough money for a real animal, which is now a serious status symbol.

If this plot seems slightly familiar, perhaps you’re thinking of the 1982 movie Blade Runner (or the recent sequel Blade Runner 2049) that’s based on this book! Not only is the title different, but the book and movie are quite different, too, so you won’t spoil too much by watching the movie first.

Many of Philip K. Dick’s works have been adapted to the screen, such as Minority Report, We Can Remember it for you Wholesale (as Total Recall in 1990 and 2012), and The Man in the High Castle (the book club read this one 2 years ago!). There’s also a graphic novel adaptation of Do Androids Dream… for those of you who enjoy sequential art.

To find Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? check at your public library or request the book from our library via interlibrary loan.

We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday, February 21st at 1pm in Library 314 to discuss Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Introducing our Newest Librarian, Olivia Miller

A new librarian started at Claire T. Carney Library on May 1st! Read through the interview below to get to know our new Arts & Humanities Librarian, Olivia Miller.

So you’re the Arts & Humanities Librarian? What does that even mean? I function as a liaison to all students, faculty, and staff in the College of Visual and Performing Arts and the departments of Philosophy and English Literature and Criticism. That means I answer questions, buy books, teach library instruction sessions, and do one-on-one research consultations all for these departments. I also spend time on the Reference Desk in the Learning Commons each week so I answer questions for lots of different departments as much as I can.

Where are you from? I grew up in the foothills of North Carolina so I say things like “y’all.” More recently I lived in Greensboro, NC where I worked as the Public Services Librarian at Greensboro College.

Hmm. Greensboro. That sounds familiar. Is it historically important? I’m so glad you asked! Greensboro played an important role in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Four African American college students from North Carolina A&T asked to be served at the lunch counter at Woolworth’s. They were refused service because of their race so they refused to leave and jumpstarted a nationwide sit-in movement.

Where did you go to school and what did you major in? My undergraduate degree is from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro where I double majored in Art History and English and minored in Classics. I also have a master’s degree in Library Science from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. In grad school I mostly focused on art librarianship so I could continue to use the skills I learned as an undergrad in my professional career.

Do you have any hobbies that aren’t librarian-ish? It’s a stereotype that librarians read a lot and I adhere to that stereotype. I think I read around 80 books last year (a lot were comics but they’re still books!). I love to travel and have made a promise to myself to travel somewhere within the US and somewhere out of the country once a year (the photo above is from August with me squinting in the Icelandic sun in front of a geyser that’s preparing to do its geyser thing). I also practice yoga as much as I can.

What are you looking forward to this Fall semester? I’m excited about meeting and getting to know the students, faculty, and staff in my departments.

If you had to give one piece of advice to students, what would it be? Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

How can someone contact you if they need help with research? You can email, call, or stop by my office. You can find my contact info here.

The Sci Fi Book Club is reading A Wrinkle In Time!

This summer the Science Fiction Book Club will be transporting our minds to new places (but perhaps familiar to some) in three fantasy novels that have been adapted into movies or TV series.

In the first meeting of the summer, we’ll be discussing the classic children’s fantasy novel A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. The book was released in 1962 and in 1963 it won the coveted Newbery Medal. You can read L’Engle’s acceptance speech here.

The Newbery Medal is a big deal. It’s been awarded each year since 1922 to the book a committee within the Association for Library Service to Children finds to represent the “most distinguished contribution to American literature for children” in that year.

Aside from the fact it won an important award, this book and its series, Time Quintet, is hugely popular. Like with many popular books, some deemed it necessary to ban or challenge its place in libraries and schools. According to the American Library Association it was the 22nd most banned book of the 1990s. Chances are you’ve either read it or heard about it—even if that’s only because you follow Mindy Kaling, Oprah Winfrey, or Reese Witherspoon on Instagram.

You probably weren’t expecting to see these names here, were you? In February of 2017, filming of the newest movie adaptation wrapped up in New Zealand. Kaling, Winfrey, and Witherspoon couldn’t help themselves from posting pictures of their fun on other side of the world. This Mashable article collects their best photos.

The movie, produced by Disney, is due to hit theatres March 9, 2018. This is actually the 2nd time Disney has adapted the book to the screen. They originally filmed the 2003 movie as a TV miniseries but ultimately premiered it as a TV movie and released it to DVD several months later.

This classic book should be available at your local public library or through our interlibrary loan service! For fans of comics, you can also find a graphic novel adaptation of the book!

Join us in Library 314 at noon on Tuesday, June 13th to discuss A Wrinkle in Time!

Claire T. Carney Library End of Semester Announcement

Poster of Claire T. Carney Library and Open 24 HoursThe Claire T. Carney Library will open its doors to the UMassD community for 24/7 hours starting at noon on April 23 (Sunday) until May 10 (Wednesday) when we will close at 10PM.  Library services for Circulation/Reserves, the Digital Media Center, and Reference will not have extended hours, so make sure to visit those service points during regular hours.  You will also need a UMass Pass to enter the building after 10PM and until regular opening hours the next day.

We hope you will find a variety of study spaces to choose from including our quiet study areas in the South Reading Room and Grand Reading Room (when no events are scheduled), several group study rooms available by reservation, and many individual and group study areas throughout the building.

Please be mindful that we will be close to seating capacity, so if you are at a group table and not expecting team members, please use our Open/Taken table tents to offer seats to others.

We also encourage everyone to be respectful of the space and other students by watching noise levels and picking up after yourselves should you bring any food/drink.

If you have any question, please contact our staff either at the Circulation/Reserve desk (x8750), the Learning Commons desk (x8884), or the overnight security staff.

We wish you all the best with your exams and a productive end to the semester!