The Case for Language Learning

The Guardian recently posted an article about what motivates a person to learn a new language. In Lauren Razavi’s  “Language learning:  what motivates us?,” John Schumann, a linguistics professor at UCLA’s Department of Applied Linguistics, and member of  the Neurobiology of Language Research Group, posits that  “for over 50 years, two terms have categorized motivation in language learning: integrative and instrumental.  Integrative motivation is the motivation to learn a language in order to get to know, to be with, to interact with and perhaps become like the speakers of the target language.  Instrumental motivation is language learning for more pragmatic or practical purposes…such as fulfilling a school requirement, getting a job, getting a promotion in that job, or being able to deal with customers.  For English speakers, the focus must be on the cultural and social benefits of learning languages – on the symptoms of integrative motivation, which go beyond employment prospects and good grades.”

http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/mar/19/language-learning-motivation-brain-teaching

Be sure to visit Media & Reserve Services and check out a foreign language series today.

New Titles – March 17th

Feature Films

abouttime

About Time

At the age of 21, Tim discovers he can travel in time and change what happens and has happened in his own life. His decision to make his world a better place by getting a girlfriend turns out not to be as easy as you might think.

beforemidnight

Before Midnight

We meet Jesse and Celine nine years on in Greece. Almost two decades have passed since their first meeting on that train bound for Vienna.

thecanyons

The Canyons

When Christian, an LA trust-fund kid with casual ties to Hollywood, learns of a secret affair between Tara and the lead of his film project, Ryan, he spirals out of control, and his cruel mind games escalate into an act of bloody violence.

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Language Learning @IUB Libraries: Do You Speak American?

DVD_do_you_speak_americanWell, the answer varies depending on location, location, location. In the documentary, Do you Speak American, host Robert MacNeil travels the United States to “examine sociolinguistic questions and the dynamic state of American English, a language rich in regional variety, strong in global impact, and steeped in cultural controversy.”  You can check out the film from Media & Reserve Services (M&RS), located on the ground floor of the Herman B Wells Library, or watch it on Youtube. If you can imagine how many culturally diverse languages are spoken here in the United States, then can you imagine how many prime languages and dialects are spoken around the world?

Did you know that you can learn any of 60 foreign language courses offered on the IUB campus to include medieval languages such as old English, medieval Hebrew, Persian, old Tibetan, and Ugyhur?  Did you also know that the IUB Libraries collects print and non-print resources in over 200 languages?  Media & Reserve Services is dedicated to the teaching, learning, and cultural needs of its community.  We house a rich, and diverse language learning collection not only in audio formats, but in visual formats as well.

Select language titles in the collection include: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, Sanskrit, Tibetan, Turkish, Ukranian, Welsh, and Zulu from noted companies such as Euro Talk Interactive, Foreign Service Institute, Pimsleur, and Rosetta Stone.   We invite you to drop in, ask our knowledgeable staff about the foreign language learning and film collections, and explore new languages and cultures today.

Audio CDs in the language learning collection circulate for 14 days, and movies from our extensive and eclectic foreign language film collection circulate for 7 days.  IU faculty, staff, and students can log into My Account to renew an item.

À bientôt!

7 Things You Should Know About Games and Learning

The Games and Learning Group from the Educause Learning Initiative (ELI) just released an updated version of 7 Things You Should Know About Games and Learning. In addition to the ELI report, the NMC 2014 Horizon Report included “Games and Gamification” as an emerging technology that is “likely to have a large impact over the coming five years in education around the globe.”  Both are interesting reads.

Patrons can check out a variety of gaming formats from M&RS for 7 days.  Formats include: GameCube, PS, PSP, X-Box, X-Box 360, and Wii.

I will attempt to spotlight content related to gaming each month.  Content information can come from an article, blog, website, etc.

My spotlight for this month is Gamemoir, “a video game culture and lifestyle website dedicated to delivering entertaining, fresh, and through-provoking content to our readers…we write about the experiences, reflections, people we meet, and the games we love to play from the unique perspective of our diverse stable of contributors. We dig deeper into dissecting our favorite video games to give our readers a new perspective on topics they thought they knew.”  Enjoy!

House Of Cards Season 2: What Now?

Warning. This post contains extensive spoilers for House of Cards Season 2, so probably don’t read on if you are currently in the process of watching it, plan on watching it, might get into that show some day, or aren’t planning on watching it but tend to change your mind on things a lot. However, if you’ve seen the season or you just enjoy the time-honored practice of experiencing television backwards, by starting with spoilers of the latest season, and ending by watching the series premiere with the back of your head, read on.

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The rib-munching mad-man we love to hate, Frank Underwood does his signature class ring knock-on-wood right onto the desk in the Oval Office, and the screen cuts to black.

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My Bleeding Heart: Horror Announcements

Hello to everyone out there on the interwebs! As part of M/RS’s new blog, I’m going to be posting a series centering on the most bone-chilling (and sometimes hilarious) genres of all time: horror.

Over the tumblr_inline_mubd8hEtrZ1r409prpast six months, we have been working hard to build a horror collection to be proud of, and we’ve added approximately 150 new titles to our collection. These titles range from silly–Aaah! Zombies!! (2007)–to classic–The Blob (1958)–to disturbing–Last House on the Left (1972). We’ve added several television titles as well–True Blood: Season 1 (2008), Teen Wolf (2011), and American Horror Story (2011) to name a few. Best of all, these titles have been added to our browsing collection so our patrons can take them home for a longer amount of time and have easier access.

This new collection was created through the requests of our patrons, new curriculum here at the university, and the ever-growing presence of horror and horror elements in contemporary media. Not only are horror remakes as popular as ever, but now horror is becoming more prevalent in pieces that combine comedy, drama, suspense, etc. in ways that only promote horror’s progressional aspects all the more.

In this series, I’ll be addressing the evolution of the horror genre on film. The series will focus on identifying horror’s major subgenres and the influences behind these movements. I’ll also look at the original titles that started it all as well as more modern films that fit into these categories. If you’re interested in checking out some horror history a little bit sooner, here are two interesting documentaries to get you started–Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film (2006) and Nightmares in Red, White and Blue: The Evolution of the American Horror Film (2009). Otherwise, stay tuned!

New Titles – March 3rd

Feature Films

Alexander_the_Last_film_poster

Alexander the Last

A married actress, her musician husband, her on-stage lover, and her impulsive sister all get caught up in a sexual and creative tangle of commitments, temptations, and performances.

born_in_east_LA

Born in East L.A.

When a native-born American citizen of Mexican descent is mistakenly deported to Mexico, he has to risk everything to get back home.

computer_chess

Computer Chess

A 1980s-set story centered around a man vs. machine chess tournament.

Continue reading “New Titles – March 3rd”

What are the Oscars?

The Oscars are a behemoth. For 85 years, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has been awarding honors to the outstanding (mostly American, largely anglophone) films of each year, and in so doing have created a sort of canon (a strange canon, admittedly; where are Badlands, Do the Right Thing, and Paris, Texas?). Engaging critically with any canon is important not only toward understanding the biases (and potential shortcomings) of a list and its originating institution, but also toward a larger project of recognizing our cultural psyche. It’s too simple, of course, to suggest that the movies we create and experience directly reflect the “id” of our collective consciousness, but it is valuable to try and understand the ways in which its products reify the structural underpinnings of the sociocultural sphere.

In other words, how do the movies we celebrate reflect what we care about? What do this year’s films suggest are our larger concerns? Is it: anxiety about the digital sphere and the possibility of human connection therein? the persistence of white guilt and the problematics of race relations? lineage and generational tensions in how we narrate our lives? the tyranny of neoliberal capitalism, and its attendant psychosocial fatigue? all of the above? Obviously these are simplistic assessments of complex films and their themes, not to mention that there were many other films made outside of the insular Academy candidate pool, but these questions offer a starting point, if no easy answers, toward understanding our own patterns and anxieties.

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Announcing our Spring 2014 film series, Laughs of the Decades!

Hey y’all! Any comedy fans out there? Well drop on by E174, and check out our Spring 2014 film series, Laughs of the Decades! We’re journeying through decades of historic comedy, with five classic films.

Dr._StrangeloveDr. Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb – This 1964 Stanley Kubrick classic, starring Peter Sellers and George C. Scott, presents a satirical view of Cold War tension and the nature of the theory of mutually assured destruction. Catch it not only for some laughs, but for a unique history lesson!

animal-houseAnimal House – Chronicling experiences that are likely familiar to those of our very own IU Hoosiers, this 1978 laugh-out-loud comedy chronicles the adventures of a misfit group of college students at Faber University’s Delta fraternity, as they evade the watchful eye of their arch enemy Dean Wormer. This all-time classic features SNL star John Belushi in one of his most memorable roles.

airplane-1980-leslie-nielsenAirplane! – This 1980 flick takes a satirical look at 1970s disaster films. Packed with slapstick gags, the film stars Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty and Leslie Nielsen as they attempt to save a flight full of endangered passengers from certain doom!

large theres something about mary blu-ray2There’s Something About Mary – Ben Stiller, Mat Dillon and Cameron Diaz star in this influential romantic comedy. Stiller plays an awkward high school student who has a run-in with misfortune at his prom. Many years later he seeks to reconnect with his date, Mary, and hilarity ensues!

TThe Big Lebowski – This cult classic follows protagonist The Dude as he’s tasked by millionaire Jeffery Lebowski to help rescue his kidnapped wife by delivering a ransom. The Dude’s friend Walter, however, has other plans, and a series of adventures play out!

 

Where!? Wells E174!

Dates and Times

Dr. Strangelove – Fri, March 7th, 7:30 PM

Animal House – Wed, March 12th, 8:00 PM

Airplane! – Fri, March 28th, 7:30 PM

There’s Something About Mary – Fri, April 4th, 7:30 PM

The Big Lebowksi – Fri, April 11th, 7:00 PM

 

Free refreshments will be provided. Hope to see you all there!