Prior to the start of the fall semester, Booth Library played host to the New Faculty Orientation led by Professor Newton Key and the Faculty Development and Innovation Center. As a way to welcome all the new faculty to campus, we have curated a display of new and recent titles about current issues and concepts in higher education, teaching, creative pedagogy, student learning, professional development, and more. These books are located in the West Reading Room and are available to browse or check out at your convenience.
Remember the ’90s? If you don’t now, you soon will! The 1990s arguably gave us some of the greatest films ever produced, and we’ve put together a handsome collection of them up here on the 4th floor, ready to be checked out. 20 years since it came to a close, the ’90s is a decade that continues to resonate and influence popular culture, and rightfully so. Where would we be without Jurassic Park? And perhaps more importantly, where would we be without Space Jam? Certainly nowhere near as excited about this display.
Works being available in the public domain means that the copyright protections on them have expired, making them free for anyone to use and build upon. If you’re a student or teacher, this means you are now free to use these materials for your education or research. Artists can create picture books centered around the lyrics of a playful 1920s tune. YouTubers and filmmakers are free to use clips of these movies or even create their own version of them. If you are a fan of a popular literary work in the public domain, you can revisit the story from the point of view of another character. The sky is the limit!
While copyright protects the creator of a work from their intellectual property being stolen or misused, it can also have the adverse effect of restricting how the work is made available or re-used. When creative works enter the public domain, an opportunity is created for obscure, or less well-known titles to be rediscovered and have new life breathed into them. The best examples of this include the highly acclaimed classic Christmas story It’s a Wonderful Life, which entered the public domain in 1975 and, despite being a box office disappointment when it was first released in 1946, became a Christmas classic after television networks were free to air the film during the holiday season.