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Scholarly Favourites - Researching In Special Collections


Mon 22 Aug 2016, 8:30am–5:00pm
Tue 23 Aug 2016, 8:30am–5:00pm
Wed 24 Aug 2016, 8:30am–5:00pm
Thu 25 Aug 2016, 8:30am–5:00pm
Fri 26 Aug 2016, 8:30am–5:00pm

Where: University of Otago Library, 65 Albany St, Dunedin, Otago

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free

Who uses Special Collections and why? What research results emanate from physically examining books and manuscripts? It was these questions that prompted the development of this ‘engagement’ exhibition.

We certainly have a wide variety of readers. The type of materials used is equally varied, ranging from a single sheet medieval manuscript and a 17th century herbal, to an issue of the Gentleman’s Magazine or a Pulp Fiction book. The actual research and the publication of the end-result can often take a long time; indeed sometimes years. It is just not about research. Many readers use a particular book or manuscript because it is a favourite; a work that resonates with their sense of being. It has become important to them.

Readers from inside and outside the University of Otago were contacted to choose a Special Collections item. They were each asked to write 150 words on ‘their’ chosen book; their favourite, or that one item that assisted their research.

The exhibition offers true variety, with items selected from the diverse collections within Special Collections: Brasch, de Beer, Shoults, Truby King, Pulp & Science Fiction, Monro, Stack. Items on display range from Albinus’s spectacular Tabulae Sceleti et Musculorum Corporis Humani (1747); Augustus Hamilton’s The Art Workmanship of the Maori Race in New Zealand (1901); and Johannes Wolleb’s Compendium Theologiae Christianae (1642); to Gregory M. Mathews’s Supplement to The Birds of Norfolk & Lord Howe Islands and the Australasian South Polar Quadrant (1928); the scurrilous Alvin Purple (1974); and Egypt and the Sudan: Handbook for Travellers (1929).

Please enjoy what others have researched and enjoyed.

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