Collections Librarian : Graham Henderson (x3514)

The collection development policy for Spanish and Latin American Studies guides the development and management of materials relating to language, literature and culture of the Spanish-speaking world in the Wellesley College Library. This policy is for the use of the Wellesley community and the Spanish collections librarian. Faculty and students are encouraged to provide recommendations for library materials.

The Spanish collection supports the curriculum and basic faculty research needs of the Spanish Department and for Latin American Studies, which focus on Spanish language skills and the literary and cultural traditions of Spanish-speaking countries . The collection also supports the general scholarly needs of all members of the Wellesley College community in the areas of Spanish and Latin American literature and culture.

The Spanish and Latin American literature collection includes primary source materials and a large body of supporting critical material. We attempt to acquire the complete works of major authors and critics from all relevant periods and genres, and representative collections of the works of secondary authors. Supporting materials include biographical, bibliographical, and critical works about these major and minor writers, as well as bibliographical and critical studies of the periods and genres in which they wrote. We subscribe to a number of journals that present the current range of literary scholarship, primarily in period and genre studies. We acquire literary works by contemporary authors whose writings have won critical attention or who have made significant cultural contributions.

Latin American studies is supported by books and journals from a broad range of disciplines, including art history, economics, history, political science, religion and sociology. These materials are purchased almost exclusively in English; Spanish-language books, beyond literature, are acquired very selectively. The one exception is works on women and the social sciences published in Mexico, Central and Latin America, which are collected in Spanish.

The Department of Spanish offers a major and minor in language and literature. [Teaching certificate?] Both introductory and advanced courses explore major writers, historical periods, genres, and a variety of social and political themes, particularly feminism and Latin American [activism?], in literature written in Spanish.

The interdisciplinary Latin American Studies program draws support from many areas of the Library collections, such as anthropology, political science, and sociology; the Spanish collection provides fundamental support for this program.

The primary geographical areas covered by acquisitions are Spain, its colonies and territories, and Latin America. Significant works on Spanish literature, but published in countries other than Spain, Latin America, the U.S., or the U.K. are very selectively acquired. Recent publications are of primary importance. Retrospective purchases are made on a selective basis for the circulating and reference collections, depending on the availability of materials and funds. Current collecting focus include XXX

Languages collected (primary and selective) or excluded: The Library's collection of Spanish literature and criticism is primarily of modern Spanish materials; Spanish literature is collected both in Spanish and, where available, in English translation. Secondary materials are collected in both Spanish and English. Portuguese-language materials are collected very selectively, in English translation only. Works on Spanish dialects and indigenous Latin American languages are collected selectively, literature in such dialects and languages is collected very selectively, in English translation only.

Geographical areas covered by the collections in terms of intellectual content, publication sources, or both, and specific areas excluded, as appropriate: The primary geographical areas covered by acquisitions are the Spain and Latin America. Significant works from the Spanish-speaking Caribbean also are acquired. Works about Hispanic literature, but published in other countries or regions than those listed above, are very selectively acquired.

Chronological periods covered by the collection in terms of intellectual content, movements or schools, and specific periods excluded, as appropriate: There are no strict chronological limitations in the selection of Spanish language and literature materials; although contemporary and twentieth century is currently emphasized.

Chronological periods collected in terms of publication dates, and specific periods excluded, as appropriate: Current publications are of primary importance. Retrospective purchases are made on a selective basis for the circulating and reference collections to fill in a series gap, to replace a significant work that is missing or damaged, or in response to faculty and student recommendations.

All items in these categories, including Spanish cinema, are housed in Clapp Library; items related to Spanish music and art (including architecture, photography and graphic design) are located in the Music and Art Libraries, respectively. The general scope of this collection is primarily determined by Library of Congress call numbers PQ6000-9999; Hispanic-American literature is classified in PS; Spanish cinema, feature films, and related works are located in PN.

Reserves: Paper, audio, and visual materials for student reserves is handled by the Knapp Center in Clapp Library which oversees all reserves activity. Extensive access to technology supporting language study is encouraged and supported.

Reference: Reference material for Spanish and Latin American Studies is purchased by the Reference Librarian for Research and Instruction and follows the general subject parameters of this collections policy. The scope includes, but is not limited to, the following types of material: a variety of language and specialized dictionaries/thesauri/nomenclature aids, encyclopedias, style and/or literature guides, and occasional electronic search aids and directories which support curricular programs.

Collected: Books, periodicals; reference materials, including dictionaries, encyclopedias, bibliographies, biographical dictionaries, companions, concordances, and indices.

Collected selectively: Electronic resources, newspapers, proceedings, videorecordings and multimedia.

Not collected: Government documents, textbooks, juvenile literature, dissertations and theses, 35mm film.

The collection is related to several other collections in the library.

Africana Studies

American Studies: The collections librarian for English has primary responsibility for American Studies, and selects Chicano and Hispanic-American literature and related critical works, biographies and memoirs, and cultural studies.


Art: The Art Librarian is responsible for selecting materials relating to Spanish and Latin American art and architecture, including pre-Columbian art and archaeology. These items are housed in the Art Library.

Cinema & Media Studies: In support of the curriculum, the Spanish collections librarians selectively collects Spanish and Latin American motion pictures (DVD is the preferred format), film theory and criticism, and film adaptations of literary works.

Comparative Literature: The English faculty and collections librarian take primary responsibility for general literary history and theory; the Spanish collections librarian selects comparative literary studies focusing wholly or in part on Spanish and Latin American literature.




Jewish Studies


Peace & Justice Studies

Political Science




Theatre Studies: The Spanish collections librarian selects literary criticism on drama; the theatre collections librarian selects materials on play production, acting, costumes, sets, and direction. Both select plays; critical editions are preferred, but playscripts intended for performance use are selected when no other edition is available, typically the case for new plays.

Women's & Gender Studies

    Collected: Books, periodicals, and reference materials, which include encyclopedias and handbooks, annuals, bibliographies, biographical dictionaries and directories, concordances, indexes, and companions. We also acquire dictionaries, thesauri, sourcebooks on grammar and usage, and handbooks for writers of research papers.

    Collected selectively: Conference proceedings, multi-media publications, spoken-word recordings, electronic resources, and videos and DVDs (Note: Region 1 DVD and NTSC VHS are the preferred formats for video materials. Region 2/PAL videorecordings are acquired when this is the only format available).

    Not collected: Plot summaries, vanity press publications, juvenile literature (although juvenilia of major authors is acquired), textbooks, pamphlets, periodicals in newsletter format, rare books and manuscripts, and 35mm films.