The Medical Library has reopened!!

Categories: Announcements, Library
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Published on: 31 July 2015

IMG_medlib_table and chairs_sm31/July/2015

During the semester break, we have been busy refurbishing the Medical and Camden Libraries and are happy to announce that Medical is ready to go with Camden soon to follow!

Both spaces have been refitted as learning spaces with bookable group study rooms, additional study spaces, touchscreen help points, roving learning support via Peer Learning Advisors, and printing, scanning and computing resources.

The doors are open, but we will continue to improve the spaces over the next few weeks with additional study furniture due to be installed in both spaces, and for Camden a new Holds and Loans (HAL) unit for high demand material and requested or recalled material via document delivery.

IMG_4128_living room_smThese spaces will initially operate from 7am-9pm Monday to Friday, and 8am-9pm Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays with the view to making them 24/7 as soon as possible.

All current students and staff at the University can use the spaces and you should already have swipe access added to your campus card or staff card.


For more information on the Medical Library space, please visit

20 Aug: Les Murray is reading at Fisher Library

We are delighted to welcome Les Murray back to Fisher Library for a reading from his newest poetry collection, Waiting for the Past (2015), his first in five years.

Les Murray


When: Thursday 20 August 2015; 5:30 pm (refreshments) 6.00 – 7pm (reading)

Where: Fisher Library F03; Seminar Room; Level 2


In Waiting for the Past he continues his use of molten language. From ‘The Black Beaches’ to ‘Radiant Pleats, Mulgoa’, from ‘High Speed Trap Space’ to ‘1960 Brought the Electric’, this is verse that renews and transforms our sense of the world.

Another new book of Les’, On Bunyah, will be published in October 2015. It brings together a collection of the poems Murray has written about the place where he comes from and by extension about the rural life and small communities of Australia.

Les Murray is one of Australia’s living treasures. He has published fourteen books of verse in Australia and his work is studied in schools and universities in Australia and beyond.


All are invited to attend this free event and light refreshments will be provided. Seats are limited for this very popular event so book early to avoid disappointment.

Cost: Free with booking required

RSVP: by 10 August 2015

T 02 9114 0866

for updates on social media: #LesMurray@Fisher

Exhibition: Bookish II – 1 July to 5 August

Categories: Exhibitions, Library
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Published on: 26 June 2015

Ex Libris Fisherarium:

Marrickville Garage presents: BOOKISH IIEx Libris Fisherarium: Bookish II: Jane Eyre Montage (image by ) Anne Kay

When: 1 July – 5 August 2015, 9:00am – 5:00pm

Where: Fisher Library F03, Levels 2, 3 and 4.


In 2013 artist space Marrickville Garage organised a project based around the photo book called BOOKISH. BOOKISH II is an extension of that original concept, wherein three artists have used the book as a starting point for three different approaches to working with books as inspiration, as concept, as object and as source.

Anne Kay’s “Learning to draw from books”, is a series of photo-montages, which developed out of an enjoyment of 18th and 19th century novels, a corner of literature that is now a little dusty and arcane. Initially, the attraction was to the literary forms of the period, and the opportunity the narratives offered to peek into earlier, somewhat foreign societal customs. After accumulating an eclectic assortment of paperback reprints, the attraction extended to the cover illustrations, which hinted at the stylistic variation over the decades in illustration and book cover design. In this series of artworks, the cover illustrations are the subjects for learning to draw.

Jane Polkinghorne has organised “A Brief Scatological Survey” of books and objects scatological in nature. Dominique Laporte’s 1978 book Histoire de la merde (Prologue)published by MIT in 2000 as History of Shit, is used for this project as a foundation text. Laporte’s analysis of shit links the development of Paris to control of the French language, and can be more broadly read as a critique of the increasing control governments wield over every aspect of our lives, literally controlling us from the toilet to the grave.

A Brief Scatological Survey” brings together the works of Trevor Fry, Sally Clarke, and Margaret Mayhew, as well as objects from Polkinghorne’s collection of scatological objects alongside various publications on the scatological.

Sarah Newall has researched the documentation of Australian Aboriginal “bush tucker” and this includes the European botanical drawings of Sydney Parkinson who was on the Endeavour in 1770 with Captain Cook, through to modern publications. This is an extension of her ongoing interest in flora and its representation within the domestic sphere. Recently this has expanded into gardening projects and sustainable materials and practices.

'A History of Shit' in Ex Libris Fisherarium: Bookish II (image: Jane Polkinghorne)Collective title for the project and/or individual titles.


“Learning to draw from books” Anne Kay

“A Brief Scatological Survey”, curated by Jane Polkinghorne. Works by Sally Clarke, Trevor Fry, Margaret Mayhew and Jane Polkinghorne. Includes various books and publications

“wild food project” Sarah Newall


Associate Professor Michael Goldberg

T: +61 2 9351 1082



For updates on social media: #Sydney_Library #RareBooks

Exhibition: Highlights and Lowlifes – 29 June to 31 August

An exhibition on the Australian Holdings in the Detective Fiction Collection

Rare Books and Special Collections will be hosting a display of some of the Australian works held in the Detective Fiction Collection.

When: Monday 29 June to 31 August 2015, 9:00am – 5:00pm

Where: Rare Books Reading Room, Fisher Library F03, Level 1Covers from the books: ‘Cocaine Blues (Kerry Greenwood, 2012), ‘Death Wears a Lady’s Smile’ (Don Haring), ‘The Dying Trade’ (Peter Corris, 1980), ‘Still Murder’ (Finola Moorhead, 1991),’ Grim Pickings’ (Jennifer Rowe, 1987)

The Detective Fiction Collection began informally in the 1960’s following a donation to the Library, which contained a large number of Penguin crime paperbacks. More titles were extracted from later donations until, in 1974, the Library bought a major American collection of detective fiction (3,500 titles), many of them valuable first editions. This purchase so pleased Frederick May (then the University of Sydney’s Professor of Italian) that he donated 1,200 of his own crime fiction books, with the Library purchasing another 800 titles from his estate in 1978. At this time, the collection grows by donation, a little purchasing, and by the addition of NSW titles received on legal deposit.

The Detective Fiction Collection began informally in the 1960’s following a donation to the Library, which contained a large number of Penguin crime paperbacks. More titles were extracted from later donations until, in 1974, the Library bought a major American collection of detective fiction (3,500 titles), many of them valuable first editions. This purchase so pleased Frederick May (then the University of Sydney’s Professor of Italian) that he donated 1,200 of his own crime fiction books, with the Library purchasing another 800 titles from his estate in 1978. At this time, the collection grows by donation, a little purchasing, and by the addition of NSW titles received on legal deposit.


Collecting Crime

The Detective Fiction Collection is the biggest of its kind in Australia and is a major research resource for students of the genre, and of Australian literature, social studies and popular culture in general. Although called “detective fiction”, crime fiction would be a more apt term to describe the works held. Holdings run the gamut of the genre, ranging over murder and detective stories, spy fiction, psychological thrillers and police procedurals. All publishing formats are included, including variant editions, covers and multi-media. True crime material is not collected.


Australian holdings on display

The Australian holdings in this collection form a major part of its strengths. Crime in all its permutations has existed in our fiction since Australia’s days as a penal colony. The display will showcase the 19th century crime stories of writers such as John Lang, Marcus Clarke and Fergus Hume (“Mystery of a Hansom Cab”); the early Boney novels of Arthur Upfield; the pulp fiction explosion of the mid-20th century; the strength of Australia’s forgotten female crime writers from the 19th century such as Ellen Davitt and Mary Fortune through to the 20th century’s now unremembered stars such as Pat Flower, Pat Carlon, Margot Neville and June Wright. Also on display are examples of the most recent flowering of Australian detective fiction, beginning with Peter Corris and including Peter Temple, Barry Maitland, Claire McNab et al.


For updates on social media: #RareBooks; #FisherLibrary


The Quarter has opened!

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Published on: 13 May 2015

QuarterNewsThe Library is pleased to announce the opening of:

“The Quarter”

It is an exciting new space dedicated exclusively to postgraduate coursework students in the Badham Building on Science Road.

Our goal is to support a holistic student experience and to develop a vibrant community that supports the teaching, learning and wellbeing needs of postgraduate coursework students. It will be a “home-away-from-home”, as well as an online community to help you anytime, anywhere.

Our Postgraduate Learning Advisor (PLA) team are all current postgraduate students at the University and are available to assist you to make the best use of the facilities, resources and services that the Library and University provides, including:

  • Library resources and services
  • Connecting you to the experts who can help
  • Peer advice and support
  • Technology (ICT)
  • eLearning (eg Blackboard)
  • Finding the best coffee on campus!
  • And much more

Postgraduate coursework students already have access to The Quarter. Please test it out by swiping your student card against the reader. Check out our Ask Us Now FAQ section on The Quarter website if there are any issues.


Got any questions or feedback? Connect with us here or via our Facebook group.

Find out more via The Quarter website

For news on social media: #TheQuarter

Films At Fisher series program

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Published on: 24 April 2015

Stories of warFilms At Fisher is an occasional series of free film screenings, for University of Sydney students and staff, selected to complement the major exhibitions curated by Rare Books & Special Collections, academic and other curatorial partners.

Our current exhibition in the Exhibition Space, Level 2, Fisher Library is:

Stories of War from the University Collections – 24 April to 2 October 2015
An exhibition of materials drawn primarily from the University Archives and Rare Books & Special Collections, with contributions from the Macleay Museum and the Faculties of Medicine, Education and Social Work that reflects the nuanced and varied ways the University’s community understood and responded to the First World War. Read more >



Join us at 5.30pm on the following Tuesdays in the Exhibition Space, Level 2, Fisher Library North for these screenings

28 Apr  Shoulder Arms (US/1918) Dir. Charlie Chaplin
05 May  J-Accuse (Fr/1919) Dir. Abel Gance
12 May  All Quiet on the Western Front (US/1930) Dir. Lewis Milestone
19 May  Mata Hari (US/1931) Dir. George Fitzmaurice, starring Greta Garbo
26 May  A Farewell to Arms (US/1932) Dir. Frank Borzage
02 Jun  Les Croix de Bois, ‘Wooden Crosses’ (Fr/1932) Dir. Raymond Bernard
09 Jun  The Lost Patrol (US/1934) Dir. John Ford
16 Jun  La Grande Illusion, ‘Grand Illusion’ (Fr/1937) Dir. Jean Renoir
23 Jun  Forty Thousand Horsemen (AUS/1940) Dir. Charles Chauvel
30 Jun  Sergeant York (US/1941) Dir. Howard Hawks
 No screenings during the semester break
04 Aug  The African Queen (GB & US/1951) Dir. John Huston
11 Aug  What Price Glory? (US/1952) Dir. John Ford
18 Aug  Lawrence of Arabia (GB & US 1962) Dir. David Lean
25 Aug  Gallipoli (Aus/1981) Dir. Peter Weir
01 Sep  The Lighthorsemen (Aus/1987) Dir. Simon Wincer
08 Sep  Regeneration (UK/1997) Dir. Gillies Mackinnon
15 Sep  A Very Long Engagement (Fr/2004) Dir. Jean-Pierre Jeunet
22 Sep  Joyeux Noël (Fr, Be, Ge, Ro, UK/2005) Dir. Christian Carion
29 Sep  Beneath Hill 60 (Aus/2010) Dir. Jeremy Sims

Email scam targeting Library clients

Categories: Announcements, Library
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Published on: 17 March 2015

It came to the Library’s attention that there is a fraudulent email scam targeting Library clients.

Some of our clients received an email that appears to be coming from the University of Sydney Librarian “Anne Bell”.

The email informs users that their accounts have expired and provides a link to reactivate their accounts. The link redirects them to a bogus webpage that looks similar to a Library’s “Login web page.

If a client inputs their UniKey details on that page their account credentials will be compromised.

The email and web page are not affiliated with the University of Sydney. Anyone who receives the email should delete it immediately.

If anyone entered their information on the web page, they should contact ICT as soon as possible and report a possible compromise and change their UniKey password.




Introducing BONUS+

Categories: Library
Comments: 1 Comment
Published on: 15 July 2014

BONUS+ logoBONUS+ is a new seamless Library service for our students and staff, which will provide an alternative and faster way for you to access books that we don’t own or are on loan in our Library.

What is Bonus+?
BONUS+ is a co-operative book resource-sharing initiative among 14 major university libraries in Australia and New Zealand.

What’s in it for me?
You will have access to other library collections. If we don’t have a particular book, or the copies we have are out on loan, you will be able to see if any of the member libraries have a copy for you to borrow.

Who can use the service?
All students and staff at the University of Sydney.

How does it work?
When you search our Library catalogue and don’t find the item that you are after, simply click on the Bonus+ icon to see if another library has a copy available. The request is processed automatically – no filling in forms. And when the item arrives, we will email you to let you know that your book is ready for pickup. You can also keep track of your requests via MyLoans.

When can I start requesting from these libraries?
Wednesday 16 July 2014.

Find out more:


Silent, quiet and group study zones

Categories: Announcements
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Published on: 23 April 2014

Silent, quiet or group study zonesWhether you need to concentrate in a quiet space, work quietly with a friend or study in a group there is place for you in the Library.

Choose the right zone for your study needs here.

ANZAC display! A new exhibition the University Archives and Rare Books and Special Collections

25 March to Friday 5 April 2013

ANZAC material from the University Archives and Rare Books and Special Collections is on display in the Fisher Library Level 2 exhibition area until Friday 5th April.

Notable items include the Gallipoli diary of Francis Badham Oliver, C.E.W. Bean’s personal copy of the ANZAC book which was compiled by troops in the trenches and camps of Gallipoli in 1916, and the Sydney University Union War Service Record of Captain Percy Storkey, recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for acts of bravery in wartime.

The display is open the same hours as Fisher Library.

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