Monday, March 31, 2008

Index Islamicus is now online

Index Islamicus is an international bibliography of publications in European languages covering all aspects of Islam and the Muslim world, including history, beliefs, societies, cultures, languages, and literature. The database includes material published by Western orientalists, social scientists and Muslims and contains indexing for 3,470 titles with coverage dating back to 1906. Index Islamicus is produced by Brill Academic Publishers.

We previously had this index only on CD. This database is listed on the Middle Eastern Studies, Country Studies, and Databases A-Z pages.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Science & Spirituality Symposium

There are few familiar words that can describe the universe as a whole. Those who study the universe use physics and mathematics, but what are their equations about? And what is our place in the universe?

What It Means to be Human: Science, Consciousness and Our Place in the Universe is the topic of the MTSU Science and Spirituality Symposium at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 27, in the State Farm Lecture Hall of MTSU’s Business and Aerospace Building. The event is free and open to the university and the public.

The lecturers will be Dr. Joel R. Primack, a professor of physics and one of the world’s leading cosmologists, and Nancy Ellen Abrams, attorney and former Fulbright Scholar. Primack is a renowned lecturer, author and researcher. Abrams is an author and frequent speaker with a long-term interest in the history, philosophy and politics of science.

Primack and Abrams jointly teach the prize-winning course “Cosmology and Culture” at the University of California-Santa Cruz. They coauthored the groundbreaking book The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos.

Dr. Gary Wulfsberg, a professor of chemistry at MTSU, says he appreciates the open-minded approach Primack and Abrams take to their subject.

“They realize that we don’t know what 95 percent of the universe consists of,” Wulfsberg says. “It sort of takes one away from the earlier scientific view that we’ve got things under control, (that) we’re the path to all truth in the universe, and the religions and humanities are just sweeping up the dust.”

“At the heart of humanity’s problems on this planet is a terrible alienation from nature, both planetary and cosmic,” says Rami Shapiro, an adjunct religious studies professor at MTSU and an ordained rabbi. “We see ourselves as essentially unnatural; we imagine this world as an antechamber to the more important world to come. The true hope that dialogue between science and spirituality holds out is this: to reawaken our capacity for wonder; to help us realize that we are the way the universe looks at itself and says ‘Wow!’ This is what our guest speakers are going to help us do: look and wonder.”

Primack and Abrams’ visit to MTSU is co-sponsored by the James E. Walker Library, the Colleges of Basic & Applied Sciences, Liberal Arts and Honors, the Department of Physics & Astronomy and the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost.

For more information, contact the Walker Library at 615-898-2772.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Get a Research Coach

Do you have a big paper coming up? Do you need to find good quality sources (books, articles, websites), but don’t have a clue where to start? Or have you already tried looking but can’t find the right thing? The librarians at the MTSU Walker Library can help.

Schedule a Research Coach appointment to receive 30 minutes of one-on-one help using the library resources to locate the sources you need to ace your paper.

Research CoachWhen: March 24-28, 31; April 1-4
Appt Times: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday-Thursday; 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Friday
Call: Gwen Williams at 904-8530 or email

Tell Us: your name, telephone #, the course, and a little about the assignment
: You don’t have to schedule an appointment to get help. Stop by the Reference Desk on the first floor next to the computers to get research help anytime.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Looking for something to read?

Check out Fiction Connection, a new resource provided by the Walker Library. Use Fiction Connection to discover titles similar to books you already enjoy. Search by topic, genre, setting, character, location, timeframe, and more.

Use the Aqua Browser word cloud to discover related terms. Use the ‘Find Similar’ button and menu tab to select specific search criteria.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Science & Spirituality Brown Bag

The Walker Library will be hosting the second Science and Spirituality Brown Bag at 11:20 a.m. on Tuesday, March 18, in the fourth floor library conference room (475). Reservations can be made by contacting Gary Wulfsberg ( ; 898-2070) or William Black ( ; 898-2772).

The March 18th discussion will be a facilitated conversation lead by Rami Shapiro, adjunct in Philosophy. We will be discussing the potential impact of the new cosmology on our sense of what it is to be human. The conversation will be based on the work ”Discovering our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos: The View from the Center of the Universe,” by Joel Primack and Nancy Ellen Abrams.

This brown bag will be a prelude to the Science & Spirituality Symposium to be held on campus March 27 featuring Primack and Abrams.

We hope you will be able to bring your lunch and join us on the 18th.