Shaw (Watha T. Daniel)
Neighborhood Library

Remembering 'Their Eyes Were Watching God'

It's been 75 years since Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God.

Celebrating Banned Books Week at Watha T.

Oct. 1 through Oct. 6

Can you guess which popular picture book once sparked demands that it be removed from library shelves because it might “lay the foundation for future use of pornography”?  Do you know which children's classics have been challenged for promoting Communist ideas or desensitizing children “to crime related to witchcraft”?

Summer Reading Raffle Winner!

Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Library extends big congratulations to Rediate Korsa, who won a Kindle Fire in our Summer Reading raffle. This year’s theme was “Dream Big, READ!”

Review: 'Disgrace' by J. M. Coetzee

Winner of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature

Life happens. Life can bring pleasure, and pain. Over this we have no control. What is within our control, however, is the attitude(s) we choose to adopt in the face of existence. 

Friends Book Sale

Join us on Saturday, Sept. 15 for the Friends of the Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library book sale!From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Friends will be selling deeply discounted hardback and paperback books, DVDs, and CDs. We've got everything from children's books to classics and some full sets of television shows.  Come early for the best selection.

House of Watha T.: Meet Jing and Lucienne

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Jing and her daughter, Lucienne, visit Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library for story time. What you notice first is their energy: Jing bounds in enthusiastically, a warm smile and friendly greeting at the ready. She pushes a bright-orange stroller bearing many books (to be exchanged for a new bunch) and two-year-old Lucienne.

Embellishment, Fabrication, and Plagiarism

Jonah Lehrer is the latest* in a long line of writers caught up in the scandal of fabricating facts in order to construct a good narrative for his book. Recently a writer at the Jewish magazine The Tablet was fact-checking the Bob Dylan quotations in Lehrer’s book Imagine, and discovered that a good number of the quotes are misstatements, cobbled-together phrases from disparate interviews, or, some of them, fabricated entirely in order to sell Lehrer’s thesis. In a bit of poetic irony, the focus of the book was on how creativity works.Prior to the reveal that he fabricated these Dylan quotes, the celebrity slam site Gawker had been criticizing Lehrer for rehashing a lot of his older articles, mining them for material for his new job blogging at the New Yorker. (Is self-plagiarism even a thing?**) Lehrer has since resigned his role at the New Yorker.While sad, this kind of story is nothing new. Every year a new scandal comes out where people have been caught in the act of embellishing upon the truth, constructing facts to suit their narrative, and flat-out stealing the words from other people’s mouths. Earlier this year it was Mike Daisey.

Ode to the Creative Mess-maker

Or How to Avoid Aggravating your In-laws

Sitting in the car last weekend with my 10-year-old niece and brother-in-law, my niece says to me, “Remember that time when you were living with my mom and dad and you painted your furniture with glitter and it got ALL over the house, and my dad was furious!” “Er…no, I don’t remember that.”  Awkward silence. Gleefully, from the back seat, “Oh, yes. It happened. My mom told me all about it.”

Up and Away With Nick Hirsch

Staff as a Resource -- Part 4

Nick Hirsch, a friendly presence at the library's checkout desk, just graduated with a B.A. honors degree in history from the University of Maryland, College Park. He went through much tension and turmoil studying for his finals, applying and appearing for interviews all over the country and working almost full time at the library.

It Marches On

A riddle for you:This thing all things devours:Birds, beasts, trees, flowers;Gnaws iron, bites steel;Grinds hard stones to meal;Slays king, ruins town,And beats high mountain down.-Gollum, from The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. TolkienThe answer, of course, is time. On a grand scale, one has to acknowledge that time ultimately catches up with us all. There is no cheat, no invisibility cloak that permanently shields us from the effects of time.