Featured Book from the Recreational Reading Collection

The recreational reading (McNaughton) collection is located on the 2nd floor of the library under the staircase

Dave Eggers, The Circle (Alfred A. Knopf, 2013) LAW-McNaughton Collection (2nd Floor)   PS3605.G48C57 2013

Screen Shot 2014-02-13 at 12.18.47 PM“Most of us imagine totalitarianism as something imposed upon us—but what if we’re complicit in our own oppression? That’s the scenario in Eggers’ ambitious, terrifying, and eerily plausible new novel. When Mae gets a job at the Circle, a Bay Area tech company that’s cornered the world market on social media and e-commerce, she’s elated, and not just because of the platinum health-care package. The gleaming campus is a wonder, and it seems as though there isn’t anything the company can’t do (and won’t try). But she soon learns that participation in social media is mandatory, not voluntary, and that could soon apply to the general population as well. For a monopoly, it’s a short step from sharing to surveillance, to a world without privacy. This isn’t a perfect book—the good guys lecture true-believer Mae, and a key metaphor is laboriously explained—but it’s brave and important and will draw comparisons to Brave New World and 1984. Eggers brilliantly depicts the Internet binges, torrents of information, and endless loops of feedback that increasingly characterize modern life. But perhaps most chilling of all is his notion that our ultimate undoing could be something so petty as our desperate desire for affirmation.” Starred Review (Review by Keir Graff from Booklist via Amazon)


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Legal Dictionaries

6a010535fde333970c01156f61efeb970c-320wiThe library has a number of different legal dictionaries, but you can also find a variety of dictionaries freely available online.  Options range from early editions of Black’s Law Dictionaries to the Glossary of provided by the U.S. Courts website. You can find these and more discussed in this guide to legal dictionaries.

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Today in Legal History: Woman Lawyer’s Bill Passed in California

Through the efforts of Clara Shortridge Foltz and Laura deForce Gordon, the words “white male” were replaced with “person” in the state requirements to take the bar exam.  This had the effect of not only allowing women to take the bar, but minorities as well.  Ms. Foltz, the single parent of five children, went on that fall to become the first woman lawyer in California and won court battles to attend Hastings law school.  (At the time, it was not atypical to pass the bar prior to attending school).  Later in her career, Ms. Foltz drafted a bill that would create a public defender system, which was adopted by 30 states. The Woman Lawyer’s Bill was passed in California on March 28, 1878.

More information is available at:

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Check it Out: The Mosque in Morgantown

This film follows former Wall Street Journal reporter Asra Nomani’s campaign for social change within the local mosque in her hometown of West Virginia. In the mosque she sees exclusion of women, intolerance toward non-believers, and suspicion of the West. As she campaigns to drag the mosque’s practices into the 21st century, she triggers a heated battle between tradition and modernity. Check out The Mosque in Morgantown from the law library.

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Featured Book from the Walkover Collection

The Walkover collection is located on the 2nd floor of the library under the staircase.

Jaimy Gordon, Lord of Misrule  (McPherson & Co, 2010) LAW-Walkover Collection (2nd Floor)   PS3557.O668L67 2010   (Winner of the National Book Award 2010)

9505561Firmly rooted in the smells and sounds of a particular place, the language of the racetrack, like Yiddish, is rich in the ironies and heartbreak of daily living. Gordon knows that language and brings it to vivid life in this moving and lyrical tone poem about the inhabitants of the “backside” at a no-account West Virginia racetrack called Indian Mound Downs. The equilibrium of life for the grooms, trainers, small-time owners, and even the horses that populate the backside’s shed rows is disrupted by the arrival of a frizzy-haired girl and her peculiar boyfriend, who plans to run his aging horse at the track. Nothing odd about that, particularly, but with the girl’s arrival, Medicine Ed, a 73-year-old groom who has spent his entire life as a “racetracker,” has a “funny, goofered feeling about the way things was going.” Ed, who earned his moniker making “goofer juice,” which has startling effects when rubbed on a horse about to run, is rarely wrong about such things. As the inevitable plays itself out over a novel structured around four horses (including the titular Lord of Misrule) running in four races, we come to feel not only the idiosyncratic camaraderie shared by the backside inhabitants but also the special rhythm of life lived near the “fly-loud” barn. This is not the world of Seabiscuit or Secretariat, where the right horse winning the right race makes everything good; this is a goofered world ruled by misrule. But sometimes, as Gordon tells it, the smell of pine tar and horse manure can function like a “devil’s tonic.” Words can do that, too, as this nearly word-perfect novel makes abundantly clear. –Bill Ott (Review from Booklist)


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National Library Week, April 13-19, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-03-26 at 6.07.39 PMThis week, Seattle University Law Library joins libraries in schools, campuses and communities nationwide in celebrating National Library Week.  First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country to highlight the value of libraries and library personnel and to promote library use and support.

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Library Artwork: M.J. Anderson’s “Column of Light”

6916690066_901305f90eOne of the most visible pieces of art in the library is M.J. Anderson’s sculpture, Column of Light (2000), at the base of the stairs on the 2nd floor.  Commissioned specifically by the Seattle University Law School in 2000, the statue was first carved from marble in Carrara, Italy, before arriving in the Law Library. Anderson, one of the best-known sculptors in the Pacific Northwest, says she sculpts in stone because “it is the least artificial of art forms and the most enduring to our humanity … I try to carve what it feels like to be human, to convey the unspoken emotions of our being here, to create an image of the intangible.” (  Column of Light displays the giving and receiving of truth and wisdom by the sculpted hands, which then guide interpretations towards ideas of God, nature, and humanity.

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Welcome Back from Spring Break

To start the remainder of the semester off right, the library would like to remind you about some of our policies:

The library is run on the honor system.  Every law school student is expected to display professional courtesy to classmates and staff.  If you have a concern, please contact library personnel at the circulation or reference desks, but keep in mind that library personnel are not able to monitor the entire library at all times.  In the spirit of maintaining a collegial atmosphere, feel free to point out these policies directly to classmates or other patrons who are not adhering to them.

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Featured Book from the Recreational Reading Collection

Sasha Abramsky, The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives (Nation Books 2013) LAW-McNaughton Collection (2nd Floor)   HC110.P6A54 2013  (New York Times Notable Book)

“Not since the Great Depression have so many Americans been counted among the poor. Freelance reporter Abramsky explores poverty in America 50 years after Michael Harrington’s groundbreaking book, The Other America. Abramsky offers historical perspective, detailing how poverty as well as social attitudes and public policy regarding poverty have changed. He points to the antitax policies of conservatives that have contributed to growing income inequality in the U.S. and growing concerns most evident in the Occupy movement and protest for the 99 percent versus the 1 percent. From Appalachia to Hawaii, from inner cities to rural areas, from families suffering intergenerational poverty to victims of the recent housing crisis, Abramsky’s portraits of the poor illustrate three striking points: the isolation, diversity—people with no jobs and people with multiple jobs—and resilience of the poor. Drawing on ideas from a broad array of equality advocates, Abramsky offers detailed policies to address poverty, including reform in education, immigration, energy, taxation, criminal justice, housing, Social Security, and Medicaid, as well as analysis of tax and spending policies that could reduce inequities” (Review by Vanessa Bush from Booklist)


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Check it Out: The Learning

In The Learning, four Filipina women reluctantly leave their families and schools to come to America to teach in Baltimore. They are hoping that the increased salary will help improve the lives of their families back in the Philippines. This beautiful film follows these teachers as they take their place on the frontline of the No Child Left Behind Act, and chronicles the sacrifices they make in order to maintain the long-distance relationships with their own families. Check out The Learning from the law library.

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