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PERF 603 - Performances, Power, and Identity  

Prof. Judith Hamera's course Spring 2014
Last Updated: Apr 15, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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This guide will introduce you to some of the best library and web resources on the topics of Performance Studies. If you have suggestions for how to improve this guide please contact us or leave your comments below. Enjoy!


Highlighted Publications

Cover Art
Parlor Ponds - Judith Hamera
Call Number: B2430.L484 K38 2003
ISBN: 9780472071661
Publication Date: 2012-01-16
Parlor Ponds: The Cultural Work of the American Home Aquarium, 1850–1970examines the myriad cultural meanings of the American home aquarium during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and argues that the home aquarium provided its enthusiasts with a potent tool for managing the challenges of historical change, from urbanization to globalization. The tank could be a window to an alien world, a theater for domestic melodrama, or a vehicle in a fantastical undersea journey. Its residents were seen as inscrutable and wholly disposable “its,” as deeply loved and charismatic individuals, and as alter egos by aquarists themselves. Parlor Pondsfills a gap in the growing field of animal studies by showing that the tank is an emblematic product of modernity, one using elements of exploration, technology, science, and a commitment to rigorous observation to contain anxieties spawned by industrialization, urbanization, changing gender roles, and imperial entanglements. Judith Hamera engages advertisements, images, memoirs, public aquarium programs, and enthusiast publications to show how the history of the aquarium illuminates complex cultural attitudes toward nature and domestication, science and religion, gender and alterity, and national conquest and environmental stewardship with an emphasis on the ways it illuminates American public discourse on colonial and postcolonial expansion.

Cover Art
The Laws of Slavery in Texas - Randolph B. Campbell (Editor); William S. Pugsley (Compiled by); Marilyn P. Duncan (Compiled by)
Call Number: PS366.S62 B38 2000eb
ISBN: 9780292721883
Publication Date: 2010-02-15
The laws that governed the institution of slavery in early Texas were enacted over a fifty-year period in which Texas moved through incarnations as a Spanish colony, a Mexican state, an independent republic, a part of the United States, and a Confederate state. This unusual legal heritage sets Texas apart from the other slave-holding states and provides a unique opportunity to examine how slave laws were enacted and upheld as political and legal structures changed. The Laws of Slavery in Texas makes that examination possible by combining seminal historical essays with excerpts from key legal documents from the slave period and tying them together with interpretive commentary by the foremost scholar on the subject, Randolph B. Campbell. Campbell's commentary focuses on an aspect of slave law that was particularly evident in the evolving legal system of early Texas: the dilemma that arose when human beings were treated as property. As Campbell points out, defining slaves as moveable property, or chattel, presented a serious difficulty to those who wrote and interpreted the law because, unlike any other form of property, slaves were sentient beings. They were held responsible for their crimes, and in numerous other ways statute and case law dealing with slavery recognized the humanness of the enslaved. Attempts to protect the property rights of slave owners led to increasingly restrictive laws--including laws concerning free blacks--that were difficult to uphold. The documents in this collection reveal both the roots of the dilemma and its inevitable outcome.


Research Tip: Doing a Literature Search

A major part of a research project is conducting a review of the literature. This provides the background and context for the research that will be conducted and is a "comprehensive examination of all of the research and all of the literature done on a particular topic" as defined by Candace Schaefer in the Writing Center. The writing center has a very informative and engaging tutorial on what a Literature Review is and how to do it with their Get Lit video.

There are additional guides available from the libraries to assist with the literature review and, once the topic is known, the literature search.

The process for Finding Books differs from that for Finding Articles but a lot of the same strategies apply. Additional guides for specific subjects or topics will list databases, journals, datasets, books, etc. which are relevant: check Subject Guides and Class Guides for your topic.

While the above guide provides some assistance, Stephen and Rebecca are happy to sit down and help with specific topics.

    Associate Professor

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    Rebecca Hankins
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    (979) 845-1951
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