Collection Development - Classical Studies

Collections Librarian : Brooke Henderson (x3258)

The collection development policy for Classical Studies guides the development and management of classics materials in the Wellesley College Library. This policy is for the use of the Wellesley community and the Classical Studies collections librarian. Faculty and students are encouraged to provide recommendations for library materials.

General purpose of the collection

The Classical Studies collection reflects the interests and curriculum of the Department of Classical Studies and supports the present and anticipated instructional and basic research needs of the Wellesley College undergraduates, staff, and faculty. The collection consists of materials on Ancient Greek and Latin authors; Greek and Roman history, literature, theater, culture, and the classical tradition. The Classics collection also provides materials for the study of comparative literature, archaeology, mythology and religion, philosophy, and history.

The Department of Classical Studies offers three closely-related major programs: Greek, Latin, and Classical Civilization. Majors in Greek and Latin are based entirely on courses in the original languages while the Classical Civilization major combines work in the original languages with courses taught in English on the history, literature, society, and culture life of the ancient world. A related, interdepartmental major, Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology, brings together courses in Classical Studies with course work in other departments. Classes in Greek and Latin are conducted in English and encourage close analysis of the ancient texts, with emphasis on their literary and historical values.

Description of the collection

Readership level: The Classical Studies collection includes works written for advanced undergraduate level and for basic faculty research; masters-level and research-level publications are collected selectively.

Languages collected (primary and selective) or excluded: Classical Greek and Latin texts are acquired for most Classical authors. For Classical civilization material, including literary criticism and interpretation, English is the primary language collected; other languages are selectively acquired with an emphasis on texts in the original Greek and Latin.

Geographical areas covered by the collections in terms of intellectual content, publication sources, or both, and specific areas excluded, as appropriate: The Classical world covered Eastern and Western Europe; Western and Central Asia, plus India, and the Mediterranean basin, including North Africa. The Classical traditions even spread to Australia, the Far East, and the Americas. Major publishers are in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, the Netherlands, France, Italy, and Greece.

Chronological periods covered by the collection in terms of intellectual content, movements or schools, and specific periods excluded, as appropriate: The Classical world refers to Greco-Roman civilization from the fourth millennium BC to the middle of the second millennium AD. Material on the influence or survival of the classical civilization in later societies is also collected. Conversely, material on the influence of non-Classical cultures, both those predating and contemporaneous with the Classical world, is acquired selectively.

Chronological periods collected in terms of publication dates: Current material, which includes recent editions of ancient texts, are considered primary acquisitions. Earlier material is purchased to fill in a series gap, to replace a significant work that is missing or damaged, or in response to faculty and student recommendations.

Reference: The reference collection for Classical Studies follows the general subject parameters of the circulating collection. The collection includes, but is not limited to, encyclopedias, biographical and subject-specific dictionaries, foreign-language dictionaries, research guides and bibliographies, indexing and abstracting databases for periodical articles and other writings. Reference works may be acquired in print or online, with online generally preferred when available. English is the preferred language, except for dictionaries and other materials in support of Greek or Latin. Reference materials are selected by the Research and Instruction Group librarian for Classical Studies, who may collaborate with the collections librarian.

General subject boundaries and library locations

Classical Studies materials are chiefly housed in Clapp Library, except materials related to the visual arts, which reside in the Art Library and those that relate to Music, which reside in the Music Library.

Related subjects and interdisciplinary relationships

In addition to the support of the specific degree programs of the Classical Studies Department, the collection also serves as a resource for undergraduate students and faculty in other areas and disciplines, and the collections librarian as appropriate may consult with other subject selectors. Some Classical Studies courses are options in various interdisciplinary studies concentrations and programs as well.

The selector for Classics consults with selectors in several other subject areas:

Africana Studies: The Classics collections librarian collects works on ancient Egypt and Roman Africa.

Art: The Art Librarian has primary responsibility for selecting works on classical art and architecture.

English: The English collections librarian may collect American and English works on the Classical influences on those literatures or consult with the Classics selector. The English selector also collects translations of ancient texts done by prominent American or English authors as well as literary criticism dealing with classics.

History: The History Selector collects works on the history of medieval…modern Greece [need to work with wording].

Italian Studies: The Classical Studies and Italian Studies selectors may collaborate on works related to the history and culture of early Rome and its eventual predominance and influence on the ancient world.

Jewish Studies: the Classical Studies collections librarian selects works on Middle Eastern archaeology.

Middle Eastern Studies: The classics selector may collaborate with the Middle Eastern Studies collections librarian on courses that deal with archaeological sites of the ancient world.

Music: the Music Librarian and Classical Studies collections librarian collaborate on the selection of works on music of ancient Greece, Rome, and other early cultures.

Philosophy: the philosophy collections librarian has primary responsibility for selecting works and critiques dealing with Classical philosophy and may collaborate with the classics collections librarian.

Religion: The Classics selector may collaborate with the Religion selector concerning works pertaining to ancient Greek and Roman religions as well as materials on ancient religious sites and their archaeological significance.

Theatre: The Classical Studies collections librarian has primary responsibility for selecting works pertaining to ancient Greek and Roman theatre, but may still collaborate with the Theatre collections librarian regarding certain titles.

    Types of materials

    Collected: Monographs and serial publications, including reference materials, including atlases, bibliographies, encyclopedias, dictionaries, concordances, directories, thesauri, and indexes, and abstracts.

    Collected Selectively: Dissertations and theses, electronic resources, periodicals, proceedings, and videos/DVDs.

    Not Collected: Juvenile literature, maps, and textbooks.