Today the VHL is delighted to be launching a new resource on Bodleian Libraries US History Libguide: ‘America and Race: A Bibliography for UK History Undergraduates.’ The bibliography project was directed by Dr Sonia Tycko and coordinated by Amelia Hart, in consultation with Bethan Davies.
Hart and Tycko began the project by trying to get a general sense of the materials that historians of America based in the UK are currently using to teach their students about racism. From there, they aimed to curate a bibliography of the best titles. Hart first collated reading lists from current or recent US history modules taught at five universities. They proceeded by surveying more than fifty UK-based historians with JISC Online Survey, asking them: What readings are most effective for teaching UK history undergraduates about race in America? Here they presented key titles from the collated lists and asked respondents to recommend more recent scholarship, and to be mindful to include the many important but often overlooked works by historians from marginalized groups. More than one thousand titles poured in. Hart used the referencing management program Zotero to keep track of bibliographic details and sort the titles into categories.
Throughout the process of curation, many historians in Oxford, the UK, and the US offered their time and expertise. The resulting bibliography has now been added to the Bodleian US History LibGuide by Bethan Davies. The LibGuide provides the ‘highlights edition’ of one hundred titles in twenty-five categories, each introduced with blurbs to help guide undergraduates in their reading.
The Rothermere American Institute is hosting PDFs of the highlights and extended editions here. The extended edition includes more than one thousand titles, which should be useful to module designers. Dr Tycko has written more about the motivations behind the bibliography project and the lessons learned here.
Bethan Davies, the VHL Librarian, provided Amelia and Dr Tycko support in using SOLO, locating resources and in discussions related to research techniques. Support was also provided by colleagues within the Bodleian referencing management team, who gave advice and assistance on using Zotero.
The VHL is committed to supporting the RAI, Bodleian Readers, and the wider academic community, by providing relevant, significant and diverse collections to support our readers’ studies and current research. With that in mind, the VHL Librarian will be reviewing the bibliography, and using this as a as a tool to consider any current gaps within our holdings. This will help to plan future spending on key research titles, and to continue to maintain and develop our collections.
Bethan Davies can provide support in finding resources, using databases and library catalogues, and planning your research in US History, Politics and Culture. To organise a 1-1 session with her, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on using the VHL, visit: https://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/vhl.