Get more out of JSTOR!

JSTOR is one of our most popular academic databases, and you may be one of the many people who uses it regularly. It provides access to thousands of journal titles, books and other resources.

We subscribe to many of its collections, giving us access to thousands of journal backruns, spanning many decades and subject areas, together with 6,500 Open Access books (all catalogued on Library Search), and over 1.3 million images, videos and audio files, via Artstor Public Collections.

But are you getting the best out of JSTOR? Read on to find some tips and features you might not know about…..

Advanced search

JSTOR is a very large, multidisciplinary database, so a simple keyword search won’t usually be the most effective way to search it. Click on Advanced Search to get more options which will give you better control over your search: for example, just searching in certain fields (e.g. author or abstract) or limiting your search by date, resource type, language or subject area.

Text analyser

This exciting new feature enables you to drag and drop a document, and JSTOR will then process your document’s text to find the most significant topics and recommend other documents within its database. Try it out!

Workspace

Using Workspace, you can save, organise, and share your sources, including non-JSTOR content. You can also add notes and generate citations in many popular formats. You need to create an account on JSTOR in order to use this feature.

Text mining

Data for Research (DfR) provides datasets of JSTOR content for use in research and teaching. Data available through the service include metadata, n-grams, and word counts for most articles and book chapters, and for all research reports and pamphlets. Datasets are produced at no cost to researchers, and may include data for up to 25,000 documents.

Further help

You can get more help with JSTOR by clicking on Support at any time, or visit their specialised library guides for a more in-depth focus on particular topics. For the very latest JSTOR developments, tips and features, follow @jstor on Twitter.

New resource on trial: The Wire magazine

The Library has trial access to The Wire magazine until December 16th 2020.

The Wire is an independent monthly music magazine, covering a wide range of alternative, underground and non-mainstream music, including avant rock, electronica, hiphop, new jazz, modern composition and traditional music. Each issue includes interviews, features and extensive reviews.

We have trial access to the full archive back to 1982: just click on the relevant link to access the content off-campus or on-campus. You can browse individual issues, or search the entire archive.

The trial ends on December 16th 2020. To help us evaluate it, please email us your feedback, or leave a reply on this blog.

New resource on trial: Mass Observation Module 1: 1980s

The Library has the Mass Observation Project: 1980s archive on trial until December 4th 2020.

This is the first module in a new Mass Observation series which will eventually cover the 1990s and 2000s.

Mass Observation is a pioneering project which documents the social history of Britain by recruiting volunteers (‘observers’) to write about their lives, experiences and opinions. Still growing, it is one of the most important sources available for qualitative social data in the UK. We already have access to the original project archive, which covers 1937-1967.

The 1980s module includes directive (survey) responses from observers on a wide range of issues, covering political and social themes, as well as everyday life. There are also photographs, leaflets, and other ephemeral materials, as well as contextual essays and timelines to help you interpret the collection.

When you access content in Mass Observation 1980s, you’ll be asked to log in.

Choose UK Access Management Federation, select Newcastle University (not University of Newcastle!) and then you’ll be prompted to log in with your Newcastle University username and password.

You can browse or search Mass Observation in various ways.

Browse by directive: browse the different directives (surveys), which are arranged chronologically and by topic.

Browse all documents: browse all the individual documents, and filter your search as required.

You can also use the Advanced search box at the top of the screen to search for specific topics.

The trial ends on December 4th 2020. To help us evaluate it, please email us your feedback, or leave a reply on this blog.

Digital Scholar Lab: find out more, and book your training slot

The Library has purchased Gale’s Digital Scholar Lab: a digital humanities platform with potential uses for students, researchers and module leaders, whatever your previous experience. It enables you to:

  • create and clean customised content sets, using our Gale Primary Sources collections (which include a wide range of historic newspaper, periodical and book archives)
  • analyse and interrogate the data, using the Lab’s text analysis and visualisation tools
  • manage and share content sets with others.

For those who regularly use digital techniques or methods, you can use the Lab to dramatically reduce the time needed to compile, curate and clean datasets, either using Gale data or locally held data, which can be uploaded into the Lab.

For those interested in teaching using the Lab, it contains a comprehensive Learning Centre that you can use to introduce students to basic and advanced concepts, with worked examples that can form the basis of a lesson plan.

Finally, for those new to digital humanities, and intimidated by thoughts of coding, the Lab provides a way to produce sophisticated, analytical research that requires no coding skill and allows you to make discoveries in archives that would otherwise be impossible.

To help you find out more about Digital Scholar Lab, representatives from Gale will be running two online training sessions for Newcastle University staff and students via Zoom on:

  • Monday November 16th, 14.00-15.30 and repeated on
  • Thursday November 19th, 10.00-11.30

The session will introduce you to Digital Scholar Lab, and its interface and workflows. It will cover text mining in general, search queries, curating and managing datasets, using analysis tools, and reviewing results. There will be plenty of opportunities for questions.

Any Newcastle University staff and students are welcome: you don’t need any previous knowledge of Digital Scholar Lab. However, if you have previously used Digital Scholar Lab, you may also find the session useful as a refresher, and to find out about recent enhancements.

To book your place on one of the sessions, please fill in our booking form.

If you are interested in more bespoke training (for example, for a specific cohort of students, or at a more advanced level), please contact Lucy Keating, and we’ll discuss with Gale representatives.

British Online Archives: new collections now available

The Library has purchased access to several new collections in the British Online Archives series:

BBC Handbooks, Annual Reports and Accounts, 1927-2002

This collection contains handbooks, annual reports and accounts published by the BBC between 1927 and 2002. It also includes a review of each year’s public service broadcasting, with detailed schedules, audience research, performance and objective tables, commentaries, and editorials. A great opportunity to examine the social and cultural forces that shaped Britain in the 20th century.  

British Officers’ Diaries from World War One

These diaries reveal what life was like for the average British soldier in the Battle of the Somme and later battles of Ypres. The battles of Loos, Arras, Vimy Ridge, and Bethune are also covered. The letters home will have been censored by the army: how much was removed depended on the censor. Tactical information and details of military training often remain, as the main concern was morale.

British Union of Fascists: Newspapers and Secret Files 1933-1951

This collection charts the rise and fall of fascism in Britain during the 1930s and 1940s, with a particular focus on Oswald Mosley’s blackshirt movement. 

The bulk of the documents are official BUF publications, including Fascist Week¸ The BlackshirtThe East London Pioneer, and Action. In addition, there are hundreds of Government documents relating to Mosley’s internment during the Second World War, including Cabinet Office, Home Office and Prime Ministerial papers.

Paris Peace Conference and Beyond, 1919-1939

This collection contains archival material relating to this tumultuous period in European and world history. The documents cover the treaties of Versailles, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Neuilly-sur-Seine, Trianon, Sèvres, Lausanne, and Locarno, as well as the foundation of the League of Nations. Most of the files are drawn from the UK National Archives, while the British Library provided the personal papers of Lord Robert Cecil and Sir Arthur Balfour.

These new resources add to the Parliamentary Labour Party Papers 1968-1994 collection, which we had previously purchased.

Drama Online: new films and playtexts now available

The Library has recently added several new collections to its Drama Online portfolio. Drama Online provides access to over 2,300 playtexts and books, and we have now bought access to the following film collections, featuring leading actors such as Gillian Anderson, Simon Russell Beale, Adrian Lester, Mark Rylance, Stephen Fry, Tamsin Greig, Roger Allam and many more.

In addition, we have also bought the 2020 updates of the Core Collection and Nick Hern Books, adding another 90 playtexts to our collection.

All the films and playtexts are individually catalogued and searchable via Library Search, or you can search/browse them all in various ways on the Drama Online site.

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For example, using the options at the top of the screen, you can browse by title, author, genre and time period, or if you click Find Plays on the home page, you can add in other search filters, such as number of roles or scenes. Select Context and Criticism for access to a wide range of e-books about drama.

When viewing a playtext, click Play Tools to analyse the speaking parts and appearances of different characters throughout the play.

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We hope you enjoy exploring the exciting new content!

New ebook collections for arts and humanities

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

The Library has invested in thousands of new ebooks since March, to help widen our collections and enable access for students, wherever you are based.

As well as purchasing individual titles, we have also bought several specialist collections of particular interest to arts and humanities, including the following:

  • Bloomsbury collections in Education, Film and Media, Law, Linguistics and Literary Studies (535 titles in total)

In addition, we have leased access to multidisciplinary academic collections from the following publishers:

All the new titles are individually catalogued on Library Search, or you can browse the books available to us on the publisher’s platform (make sure you are logged in with your Newcastle University username and password).

New resource: Library of Latin Texts

The Library has purchased access to the Library of Latin Texts (series A and B) following a well-received trial.

This database gathers together Latin texts of all genres and from all periods. Series A contains over 4,000 texts by nearly 1,400 authors, from the beginning of Latin literature to the modern era.

The companion Series B gathers Latin texts of all genres and periods, with the aim of more rapidly integrating a huge number of Latin texts into online form.

Together, the two databases form one large linguistic corpus, with sophisticated tools enabling a variety of search and analytical methods, with the stated objective being simply summarised as “who said what, when, where, and how many times?”

The databases are updated regularly, and can also be used to read texts as a whole.

You can read more about the database, or access it directly from Library Search.

New resource: The Complete Prose of T.S. Eliot: The Critical Edition

The Library has recently bought access to this major eight volume online work.

For the first time ever, the eight volumes gather together all of T.S. Eliot’s collected, uncollected and unpublished prose, making available material that has been restricted or inaccessible until now.

The content includes letters, essays, lectures, commentaries and transcripts of broadcasts, and is annotated by leading Eliot scholars.

You can read more about the background to this significant collection here or watch the trailer:

The eight volumes are individually catalogued on Library Search: just search for complete prose Eliot to find them.

Resource on trial: Bloomsbury Cultural History

Bloomsbury Cultural History logo

The Library has trial access to Bloomsbury Cultural History until June 30th 2020 (access just extended for another month!) This content is being made freely available during the current Covid-19 pandemic.

This digital reference tool focuses on cultural history, from antiquity to modernity, and the content comprises images, ebooks and interactive features such as timelines.

You can explore the resource in various ways: e.g. by topic, period or place.

As always, your feedback will be very welcome: you can either email it, or leave a comment on this blogpost.