Library Coffee Chat: Supporting Students with Remote Learning; Preservation Overview

I had the pleasure today of attending a Zoom-based UC Berkeley Library talk on preservation and conservation, led by Hannah Tashjian and sponsored by the Library Development Office. As preface, University Librarian Jeff MacKie-Mason gave an update about Library activities during the pandemic.

LDO also noted an upcoming panel, UC Research Should Be Free to All: COVID-19 Shows Us Why, on 16 Oct 2020.

Supporting Students, Supporting Research Needs

Earlier this year, the Library had halted ordering physical materials for several months because it wasn’t possible to ship or receive them—but they’re back to processing acquisitions. Research services exist by appointment, including in person with appropriate precautions for Bancroft (rare book, manuscript, art collections) and microfilm materials.

Oski Xpress pickup services are currently limited to Gardner Stacks and Morrison Room holdings because those are the spaces where library staff are permitted currently to operate in person. Gaining access to other spaces for reshelving and paging is in progress. It’s complex because the navigable areas need to be mapped out, water fountains closed off, etc. Then they need to plan out how many individuals can be in the space at once, make PPE available, make clear requests of Facilities staff for additional cleaning and maintenance, and identify who will actually enter the building, with the relevant approvals. Understandably, the preparation takes significant effort and time….


Hannah Tashjian joined the Preservation unit in 2005 (which used to be called Conservation, memory says); she’s served as its interim head since 2018. She gave an overview of the unit’s mission and primary strategies, then showed some tools and spoke about what we can learn from mending and sometimes re-mending materials—printed books, bound manuscript codices, fragments of Tebtunis papyrus, art posters, and … a javelin in the University Archives. I recognized Samuel L. Clemens’s handwriting immediately from an 1873 letter shown in one slide, and I enjoyed hearing about the Western notebooks from which mold had been removed. The twenty minutes of Q&A that followed Tashjian’s talk included a lively discussion of digitization sustainability.

I’ve no current affiliation other than alum. For more information and to support UC Berkeley Library activities and staff, please contact the Library Development Office or its executive director, Louise Gregory.

cho shim

In 2018, Kiha and the Faces released “Cho Shim” as a single from their fifth and final album. Video.

Three short translation notes: Continue reading “cho shim”

thought and memory

Tell Me Everything You Can’t Remember (2017) is Christine Hyung-Oak Lee’s Denkmal (or perhaps better, a Mahnmal) for her stroke at age 33 and subsequent rebuilding. This is the third stroke I know of for a then-thirtysomething woman. In each case, no one expected such an event and thus no one provided the right medical responses until late. One is on disability payments sufficient to let her live quietly. One left a job and quit researching and writing really good literary-historical scholarship in order to research and write knitting patterns. One is Christine, who then had a child, was cheated on, was divorced, has a new partner.
Continue reading “thought and memory”

six months of running

5.5 months of running around the block, ± once a week from 28 Oct 2018 to 13 Apr 2019: a retrospective. Why not.

In short: didn’t know I could; I can, mostly, but I don’t want to.
Continue reading “six months of running”


Lindsey Mead, ed., On Being 40(ish) (2019): Continue reading “ish”