More French ebooks through OpenEdition

The Library has recently added 731 titles mostly in French but also Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and English to its ebook holdings through OpenEdition — an interdisciplinary open access initiative in France. Now, more than 4,700 academic ebooks in the humanities and social sciences are discoverable through the portal or through the Library’s catalogs permitting researchers to benefit from a range of DRM-free formats, some optimized specifically for e-readers, tablets, and smart phones (ePub, PDF, etc.). OpenEdition’s Freemium program makes it possible for UC Berkeley to participate in an acquisitions policy that supports openness and sustainable development of scholarly resources such as these.

Visit OpenEdition to read even more open access ebooks.

Joventut: periódich catalanista: literatura, arts, ciencias

Joventut (Barcelona: Janer-Febrer, 1900) from HathiTrust

Few books and journals in the Library stay in the same place forever. Berkeley’s copy of the renowned Art Nouveau periodical, Joventut published between 1900 and 1906 and directed by Alexandre de Riquer and Lluís Vía under the auspices of the “Unio Catalanista” has recently migrated from the Art History/Classics Library to The Bancroft Library for safekeeping. Antiquarian bookdealer Peter Bernett describes the journal as “a major forum for the presentation and reviews of ‘modernista’ literature, criticism, theater, music, and visual art in Barcelona and greater Catalonia, as well as discussing current aesthetic trends in Europe.” An extension of the Renaixença cultural and literary movement with inspiration from the Pre-Raphaelites, it featured cutting edge art, architecture and literature. In its first year of publication it was the first review to reproduce a work by Picasso. The ornamental golden binding was inspired by Aubrey Beardsley’s The Yellow Book. Catalan poets, novelists and playwrights such as Jacint Verdaguer, Joaquim Ruyra, and Victor Català — who will soon be featured in The Languages of Berkeley online exhibition —were among the regular contributors.

Joventut has been digitized separately by the Biblioteca de Catalunya and the Getty Research Institute, available through the HathiTrust Digital Library and The Internet Archive.

Drawing by [Pablo] Ruiz Picasso in Joventut from HathiTrust


The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Shahan Shanur’s Retreat Without Song (left) and  a collection of poems by Hovhannes Tʻumanyan (right)

At the request of the Librarian for the Armenian Studies, Liladhar Pendse, we are posting this entry on April 22nd in the memory of the victims of Armenian Genocide. The 24th of April is Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day. The resilience of the Armenian nation, language and culture exemplify a human desire to overcome destruction and create literary monuments.

Armenian scholar and official at the court of King Vramshapuh, Mesrop Mashtots (Մեսրոպ Մաշտոց) invented the Armenian alphabet in 405 CE. Today, Western Armenian is one of the two standardized forms of Modern Armenian, the other being Eastern Armenian. Until the early 20th century, various Western Armenian dialects were spoken in the Ottoman Empire, especially in the eastern regions of the empire historically populated by Armenians and which are known as Western Armenia. Western Armenian language is also spoken in France and in the diaspora of Armenians in the United States. On the other hand, Eastern Armenian is spoken in Armenia, Artsakh, Republic of Georgia, and in the Armenian community in Iran. The two Armenian standards together form a pluricentric language. Nevertheless, only Western Armenian is considered one of the endangered languages by the UNESCO.

In the late 1980s, a group of Bay Area Armenian-American visionaries decided to introduce the concept of Armenian Studies at one of the most renowned universities in the world—the University of California, Berkeley. Within a few years, under the leadership of the UC Berkeley Armenian Alumni, and thanks to the remarkable mobilization of the community and generosity of major donors, the William Saroyan Visiting Professorship in Modern Armenian Studies was established. Later the Krouzian Endowment, established in 1996, would provide this position with significant additional support. In the fall of 1998, the William Saroyan Visiting Professorship became a full-time position.

Professor Stephan Astourian was appointed Executive Director of the Armenian Studies Program and Assistant Adjunct Professor of History in July 2002. The William Saroyan position was no longer dependent on temporary appointments. Professor Astourian began to build the foundation of a full-fledged academic program focused on contemporary Armenian history, politics, language, and culture. The program now offers Armenian history Armenian that is further enriched by visiting scholars, academic conferences, symposia, and public speaking engagements organized or delivered by Professors Astourian and Douzjian.

Shahan Shahnur’s Retreat Without Song was serialized in the Paris daily Haraj (Onward) before it was published as a novel in 1929. Set in Paris, the novel traces a tempestuous love story that provokes an identity crisis in the main character. While the interethnic romance between an Armenian man and a French woman drives the novel’s plot, its setting and characterization foreground the challenges Armenians faced after their exile from Istanbul, in the aftermath of the genocide. Upon publication, the novel enjoyed immediate success among readers; however, conservative critics, appalled by its violation of cultural taboos, labeled it pornographic. Today, precisely for its provocative treatment of religious values, romance, and diasporic life, Retreat Without Song rightfully occupies a place among the foundational texts of modern Western Armenian literature.

Hovhannes Tumanyan’s artful Eastern Armenian verse, unanimously loved by readers for over a century, presents cultural wisdom and a witty, critical perspective on socio-political dynamics. This collection includes two narrative poems that inspired operas: the tragic love story depicted in Anush served as the libretto for Armen Tigranyan’s homonymous opera whereas The Capture of  Fort Temuk, a historical tale of political intrigue, was the basis for Alexander Spendiaryan’s Almast. Also notable in this collection, David of Sasun is based on the third cycle of the Armenian epic Daredevils of Sasun. A remarkable piece of literature, this epic circulated orally for almost a millennium until its first transcription in 1873, which in turn paved the way for studies and transcriptions of additional variants. Tumanyan’s verse adaptation of this epic, first published in 1904 and still widely read, bespeaks the poet’s mastery of folkloric style.

Contribution by Stephan Astourian & Myrna Douzjian
Armenian Studies Program
Liladhar Pendse, Librarian for Armenian Studies, Doe Library

Title: Nahanjě aṛantsʻ ergi
Title in English: Retreat Without Song
Author: Shahnur, Shahan, 1903-1974
Imprint: Serialized for the daily newspaper Haraj =Haratch (Paris: Imp. Araxes, 1925-?).
Edition: Unknown
Language: Eastern Armenian
Language Family: Indo-European, Armenian
Source: Digital Library of Armenian Literature

Print editions in Library:

Title: Banasteghtsutʻiwnner
Title in English: Selected Poems
Author: Tʻumanyan, Hovhannes, 1869-1923
Imprint: Kostandnupolis : Tpagrutʻiwn K. Kʻēshishean Ordi, 1922.
Edition: 1st edition 
Language: Eastern Armenian
Language Family: Indo-European, Armenian
Source: HathiTrust Digital Library (UCLA)

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
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The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

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In light of the release of Argentina Human Rights Records by the US National Archives, I wanted to bring to the attention of our readers the Argentina Declassification Project’s Responsive Records component that is hosted by the These records can be downloaded as zip files for individual analysis and allow us to form a cohesive opinion about several social processes that took place in the history of Argentina including the processes that were influenced by the “Western” powers.

These records can be accessed below on clicking on the hyperlinks.

Responsive Records:

Below is the landing page of used for academic purposes only.

Records Relating to Human Rights Abuses in Argentina have been declassified[April 2019]!

The National Declassification Center has declassified the records relating to human rights abuses in Argentina. These OA records can be accessed  here.

According to the description on the website, “A Presidential Tasking from the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council (NSC) on June 13, 2016, directed various Executive branch departments and agencies, including the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), to search for records relating to human rights abuses committed in Argentina between January 1, 1975, and December 31, 1984, and to review responsive records for public access. In response, NARA assembled staff, including archivists from the National Declassification Center (NDC), the Presidential Libraries, and the Center for Legislative Archives to conduct this search and review. Responsive Presidential records were made available in previous releases and all identified Legislative records were already publicly available. This release represents responsive Executive Branch agency records that have been accessioned into the National Archives and have not been previously released. The NDC coordinated review of the records and prepared them for public release. Records that were released in full or in part may be accessed by using the search form below. Questions may be directed to

Ana Hatherly Bibliography + Conference/Symposium + Talk

Poeta chama poeta I, 1989
Ana Hatherly, Poeta chama poeta I, 1989, Col. Fundação de Serralves – Museu de Arte Contemporânea, Porto.

In anticipation of  the conference/symposium on Portuguese visual artist/poet/scholar/filmmaker Ana Hatherly (1929-2015), we’ve assembled a bibliography of works authored by and about her in the Berkeley Library. Hatherly was one of the pioneers of the experimental poetry and literature movement in Portugal and already well-known in Europe before earning her PhD at Berkeley in 1986. Many of the books in the collection came to the Library through her dissertation advisor Arthur Askins who maintained close contact with her after she returned to Portugal. Other books were acquired more recently through the support of the Portuguese Studies Program in the Institute of European Studies (IES) and from donors such as retired Berkeley librarian AnneMarie Mitchell.

Between the lines: Tradition and Plasticity in Ana Hathery | Entrelinhas: tradição e plasticidade em Ana Hatherly, which will take place this Friday, March 22 in Stephens Hall, is the third conference/symposium since IES and the Camões Institute in Lisbon inaugurated the Catédra Ana Hatherly, or Chair, in Portuguese Studies in 2017. Tomorrow morning, Patrícia Lino who is currently a Camões lecturer at UC Santa Barbara will give a talk in English on the poetry of Ana Hatherly in Barrows Hall that is free and open to the public.

Ana Hatherly


The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]We are pleased to launch this online library exhibition that celebrates the magnificent diversity of languages that advance research, teaching, and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is the point of embarkation for an exciting sequential exhibit that will build on one post per week, showcasing an array of digitized works in the their original language chosen by those who work with these languages on a daily basis—librarians, professors, lecturers, staff, and students. Many of these early-published works are now in the public domain and are open to the world to read and share without restriction.

Since its founding in 1868, students and faculty at UC Berkeley have concerned themselves with a breathtaking range of languages. In support of teaching and research, the University Library, which collects and preserves materials in all languages, now boasts a collection of more than twelve million volumes. It is among the largest academic libraries in the U.S. with more than half of its resources in more than 400 distinct languages.

The Languages of Berkeley as defined by this exhibition are the 59 modern and ancient languages that are currently taught across 14 departments on campus plus a few more languages that contributors wished to include. Linking the languages and works, the online exhibit will reach completion in Fall 2020 and then be archived with other online library exhibits. From November 2019 to November 2020, a physical companion exhibition will be installed in Moffitt Library’s Free Speech Movement Café, providing a prominent physical interstice with the online instance. It is our hope that it nourishes and inspires intellectual curiosity and creativity and an appreciation for learning a foreign language.

This exhibition is made possible with the contributions of all listed below and through the support of the UC Berkeley Library. It is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC). We hope you enjoy!

Claude Potts
Librarian for Romance Language Collections

Aisha Hamilton
Exhibitions Designer

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
Continue to the exhibition

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Stephan Astourian, Associate Adjunct Professor, Department of History, Emilie Bergmann, Professor, Department of Spanish & Portuguese, Jaeyong Chang, Librarian for the Korean Collections, C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Adam Clemons, African & African American Studies Librarian, Yusmarni Djalius, PhD Student, Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies, Myrna Douzjian, Lecturer, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Natalia Estrada, Reference & Collections Assistant, Ruth Haber, Judaica Specialist, Mohamed Hamed, Middle Eastern & Near Eastern Studies Librarian, Jianye He, Librarian for Chinese Collections, C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Arthit Jiamrattanyoo, PhD Student, Department of History, University of Washington,  Rick Kern, Director, Berkeley Language Center, Jesse Loesberg, Web Designer, Library Communications, Adnan Malik, Curator and Cataloger for the South Asia Collection, South/Southeast Asia Library, Toshie Marra, Librarian for the Japanese Collection, C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Raphael Magarik, PhD Student, Department of English, Susan Maslan, Associate Professor, Department of French,  Nasser Meerkhan, Assistant Professor, Department of Spanish & Portuguese, Steve Mendoza, Selector for Dutch, Curatorial Assistant & Reference Specialist, Jennifer Nelson, Reference Librarian, The Robbins Collection, UC Berkeley School of Law, Jeremy Ott, Classics & Germanic Studies Librarian, Gabrielle Pascua, Undergraduate, Department of History, Liladhar Pendse, Librarian for East European and Eurasian Studies & Librarian for Latin American Studies, Stacy Reardon, Literatures and Digital Humanities Librarian, Ana-Belén Redondo-Campillos, Lecturer, Department of Spanish & Portuguese, Brenda Rosado, PhD Student, Department of Italian Studies, Deborah Rudolph, Curator, C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Virginia Shih, Curator for the Southeast Asia Collection, South/Southeast Asia Library, Shahrzad Shirvani, PhD Student, Architecture, College of Environmental Design, Troy Smith, PhD Student, Department of Scandinavian, Hanh Tran, Lecturer, Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies, Susan Xue, Head, Information and Public Services & Electronic Resources Librarian, C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Lisa Weber, Project Manager, Library IT, Kenneth Wong, Lecturer,  Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies, Jonathan Zwicker, Associate Professor, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

New exhibition: Illustrating México One Page at a Time: Print Art of José Guadalupe Posada

Title of Exhibit: Illustrating México One Page at a Time: Print Art of José Guadalupe Posada

Time: 9 a.m.-10 p.m. (regular Moffitt hours on Saturdays)

Location: Moffitt Library gallery, 3rd floor


In the pantheon of artists who have represented Mexico for the past 150 years, José Guadalupe Posada stands out as a bright constellation. This exhibit, highlighting works by Posada and his artistic descendants, was curated by Liladhar Pendse, librarian for the Caribbean and Latin American Studies Collections, using Doe Library materials. See more at

The sweetest journal in the Library

A back issue of an award-winning bilingual cultural journal from Portugal was brought to our attention earlier this week. Usually librarians only become involved with journal receipts when they haven’t been arriving regularly, prices have increased or formats have changed but this special issue of Egoísta was like no other I had seen before. It came with a small bag of hard red candies and the cover was designed to hold them them in place. Clearly there was a connection between the issue’s theme on doce (sweet) but can you imagine the environmental risks that might ensue if we left the candies attached to the journal and housed them with the rest of the print resources in the Main Stacks? Happy Valentine’s Day!

Claude Potts
Librarian for Romance Language Collections

Notes from the Backlog: Education of the Sun King

By Randal Brandt

This is the first entry in an occasional series (perhaps very occasional) of articles describing Bancroft Library materials that have recently been made available for research.

Cartes des rois de France
Cartes des rois de France, t DC36.6 .D47 1645  

Playing cards can be used for many purposes other than recreation. Three decks of playing cards designed for a very specific purpose–to further the education of a young monarch–have been cataloged at The Bancroft Library.

France’s Louis XIV (1638-1718), known as the Sun King, ruled for 72 years, longer than any other European sovereign. Born on September 5, 1638, to King Louis XIII of France (1601-1643) and Anne of Austria (1601-1666), the future Louis XIV was his parents’ first child. When his father died on May 14, 1643, young Louis ascended to the throne at the tender age of four under the regency of his mother, who was assisted by her chief minister, the Italian-born Cardinal Jules Mazarin (1602-1661).  

One of Cardinal Mazarin’s duties was to supervise the education of the young king. To that end, he commissioned Jean Desmarets de Saint-Sorlin (1595-1676), a member of the Académie Française, to devise a series of card games, which were in vogue at court, to interest Louis in his studies. The series comprises four sets of educational cards, each bearing a full-length figure, designed and engraved by the noted Florentine engraver Stefano della Bella (1610-1664), with descriptive text and a number. In 1644, Desmarets de Saint-Sorlin published an explanation of them with the title Les jeux de cartes, des roys de France, des reines renommées, de la géographie, et des fables, cy devant dediez à la reine régente, pour l’instruction du roi (“The Card Decks [or Sets] of the Kings of France, Renowned Queens, Geography, and Fables, Previously Dedicated to the Queen Regent, for the Instruction of the King.”)

Bancroft holds three of the four sets of cards. The Cartes des rois de France (“Cards of the Kings of France”) set contains 39 biographical cards, beginning with Pharamond and ending with young Louis himself, who is depicted as a boy riding in a triumphal chariot with his mother, Anne, holding the reins. The descriptive texts recount the territorial gains and losses, marriage alliances, royal character, and political and military adventures of the kings of France. Jeu des reynes renommées (“Deck [or Set] of Renowned Queens”) has 52 biographical cards ranging from Martesie, Queen of the Amazons, to Anne of Austria. The set comprises four series of 13 cards each, with descriptive legends and a single descriptive adjective (pious, clever, cruel, saintly, wise, brave, etc.) at one of the upper corners. Jeu de la géographie (“Deck [or Set] of Geography”) also has 52 cards, with figures emblematic of the country and text recording the nation’s size, borders, natural resources, principal cities, etc. Thirteen of the cards relate to America.

The cards are known to exist in four states, with later versions having numbers and suits added, and some of the images modified or replaced (for example, the image of the young Louis XIV was later substituted with a depiction of a statue of the king as a grown man). Bancroft’s sets, which were purchased in 2013, are all in the second state. Each card has been cut out and mounted on a separate leaf. The three sets are bound together as a single volume in a contemporary vellum binding. These cards, which were later reprinted twice, first in 1664 and again in 1698, are well-known in the literature documenting the history of playing cards. However, very few examples survive in libraries. With three complete sets, Bancroft’s volume represents one of the most comprehensive collections available for research.

Cartes des rois de France (“Cards of the Kings of France”)

Jeu des reynes renommées (“Deck [or Set] of Renowned Queens”)

Jeu de la géographie (“Deck [or Set] of Geography”)