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News From the Libraries: November 2022

World Cup Watch Party

The World Cup is Coming!

Come to our watch parties at Briscoe Library! Join us for food, games, and prizes!

1pm to 3pm

Tuesday, November 29th | USA vs Iran
Wednesday, November 30th | Mexico vs Saudi Arabia
Monday, December 5th | Bracket Play
Tuesday, December 6th | Bracket Play

Join the World Cup Bracket Challenge by visiting
Enter code: DEF7D22C
Predict the FIFA World Cup Final Draw and you could win a National Team soccer jersey!

New Fiber Art Exhibit at Briscoe Library

From Lockdown to Let Loose
Recent Work by Susie Monday

Between the pandemic and the present, textile artist Susie Monday responded with work that moves from a somber reflection to joyful celebration. On display at the Briscoe Library third floor foyer from November 16th through December 16th, Monday’s recent stitched collage work uses fabric and stitch to explore both of those dimensions of human experience.

Data-driven work, such as Seven Days, Six Weeks, created with daily practice during the quarantine, showcases her process of using bits of stitch and pieces of original fabrics to document what happened in her studio during the lockdown. Monday documented each Covid infection, death and recovery in Bexar County during the first 6 weeks of the quarantine, and in other work during the pandemic explored how the world looked from inside our homes.

Now, this year, Monday explores exuberant color and shapes in work inspired by Pablo Neruda’s poem, Ode to the Tomato. The invasion of the tomato becomes an emblem of being let loose in the world.

Chilean poet Neruda wrote:

The street filled with tomatoes midday, summer, light is halved like a tomato, its juice runs through the streets...unabated,
the tomato invades the kitchen...

In this new series, the artist responds with pieces where red, round, orbs explode from the wall with delight, a series that explores freedom, delight and a celebration of the ordinary.

Monday’s medium is the art quilt, the equivalent of a painting made with fabric, designed for the wall, but reflecting the tradition of quilting in process and techniques. Her designs include both collage compositions and whole cloth created with fabric she designs on her iPad. Adding machine quilting and hand stitch adds texture and dimension to the work. She uses her digitally designed fabrics, combined with other textiles, to make compositions that are bold and engaging, telling us about the resilience and grit of making art in a complex world.

Copyright Corner: Fair Use Media

When looking for media to use in presentations and educational materials there are loads of easy to grab options on the internet. But what is safe to use?

There's a common misconception that Fair Use allows unlimited use of copyrighted materials in education. In reality, Fair Use isn't a blank check, it's a test, and all materials should be evaluated before use.

Media with open licenses offer the most freedom but always consider these four factors to determine fair use:

Amount - How much of the material do I intend to use?

Limit use to only what you need to get your point across.

Purpose - How do I intend to use it?

Only use materials that directly support learning.

Effect - Will my use effect the original?

Consider if your use will harm the sale or value of the original work.

Nature - Is it relevant?

Material used should be relevant and appropriate to your learning objectives.

Just to be sure, always check the usage rights. There are tons of Creative Commons and Public Domain media available for absolutely free, many of which require nothing more than attribution to the original creator.

Here are a few sites to get you started:

Image: Parents of Earth, Are Your Children Fully Immunized?

Student Clay Workshop

On October 19th, artists from The Clay Collective provided over 60 students with a hands-on clay workshop. The Clay Collective, a group of local San Antonio ceramic artists, created the current For the Love of Clay exhibit in the library. Pictured above are two students who participated in the workshop and later came by to pick up their clay pieces after firing. You can tell from the look on their faces that we need more events like this!

It was standing room only as students labored over their creations with occasional pointers from the artists. There were almost 50 clay pieces that resulted from the 2-hour workshop which were taken to one of the artist's homes for firing and later returned to the library.

May your hands be full of clay and your hearts be full of imagination.

Native American Contributions to Health

When it comes to today's healthcare, we have tons of options at our fingertips. Medications and other treatments, both traditional and alternative, abound.

But what about long before the modern healthcare professional and pharmacy? Historical treatments were often harsh, like bloodletting, or well-meaning but misguided, such as early cataract surgery that led to eventual infection and blindness. Others were outright dangerous, such as the heavy use of opium and ether as anesthetics, which could easily kill if not administered correctly.

Here in North America, many Indigenous tribes had their own established cultures of medicine, stretching back hundreds or thousands of years. Focused on holistic healing, they made extensive use of local flora and also created various tools for healing that were contemporary to, or predated, many European inventions.

Plants were of huge importance and were used to treat a bevy of problems. In some areas, willow bark was ingested to provide pain relief. Jimson weed was used by some tribes topically to relieve pain. In Texas, mesquite leaves were used in tea for gastrointestinal problems and mixed with water to treat conjunctivitis. In the Southwest and northern Mexico, various tribes used peyote for pain relief for more serious things like lacerations and snakebites. Several tribes, such as the Mohegan, used goldthread as a mouthwash and teething relief for infants. Some tribes are also known to have practiced a form of immunization, by ingesting small amounts of plants like poison oak, to protect against larger reactions.

It's estimated North American Indigenous tribes have over 2,500 medicinal uses for plants, but the number is likely much higher. A percentage of modern medicines were developed from plant compounds and derivatives, such as aspirin, many of which were discovered after studying their usages in indigenous medicine.

In addition to plants, tools were also widely used. The Iroquois and Seneca tribes were known to have created the first baby bottles by using bear intestines as a bladder and a hollowed bird quill for nursing. They also created their own nutritional mix for infants when breast milk was not available. A similar set-up using sharpened bone needles attached to an animal bladder was used by South American tribes as syringes. They were used for everything from injecting fluid to irrigating wounds, long before the first credited hypodermic syringes were created in Scotland in 1853.

November is Native American Heritage Month.  This month we have much to give thanks for, and much yet to be done. While discussing these contributions, we cannot forget the health disparities that continue to exist for Indigenous peoples, who often struggle with access to health care and higher incidences of some chronic illnesses than other population groups in the US. UT Health SA rests on land once owned, and still populated by, peoples of the Tāp Pīlam Coahuiltecan Nation, and the Lipan Apache, Tonkawa, and Jumanos tribes. We encourage you to take time to read further and to reach out to local organizations to learn more.

Further Reading

Local Resources

This post is brought to you by the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, located on the 5th floor of the Briscoe Library. Reach out for more information or a tour of the library.

Students Win Mah Jongg Sets

At a recent American Mah Jongg demonstration in the library, students had the chance to enter a prize drawing for 2 new Mah Jongg sets. The lucky winners were first year medical student, Brynn Weakley, and first year occupational therapy student, Dominic Jimenez. While Dominic says he has never played but gained an interest watching others play, Brynn shared that she has played about 5 times. As students were signing up to win, many said however, that they had at least some experience playing the game.

In last month's newsletter in a post publicizing the demonstration, we included a little history of the game if you are interested in learning more. Library staff person, Mellisa DeThorne, came up with the idea for the demonstration and will be starting a Mah Jongg club. If you would like to join, you can contact her at

For the Love of Clay Farewell Reception

While we are sad to see it go, The Clay Collective's For the Love of Clay exhibit came to a close with a wonderful evening celebration on Thursday, November 10th. On hand was an art truck, courtesy of Andy and Virginia Bally of Bally Studios. The truck is an outstanding example in the tradition of art cars that has gained popularity in recent years.

During the exhibit run beginning on September 19th, the artists have generously given of their time providing information about their art and a student hands-on workshop. We can't thank them enough for curating such a beautiful exhibit and hope to have them back again to grace the walls of the library.

Featured New eBooks for November 2022

For a list of the newest titles at the Briscoe Library click here.

Purchase suggestions?
Complete the online Purchase Suggestion Form or contact
Andrea N. Schorr, Associate Director of Resource Management.