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Kenyon College


Collection Development Policy: IPHS


Sarah McKee's picture
Sarah McKee
Olin 316

Research and Reference Desk
Fall Semester Hours:
Monday: 10:00am-12:00pm
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IPHS Collection Development Policy


Using classic texts from Homer to Kafka, the IPHS Program teaches students to think intensively, holistically, and critically within multiple disciplinary and historical contexts. Through close reading, exploration, and invention, IPHS students develop and express their ideas within written, oral, and multimedia projects. The program emphasizes critical thinking, research and design, interdisciplinary skills, historical awareness, and collaborative skills. Students develop these critical/interdisciplinary skills using a wide range of primary and secondary texts that includes books, film, music, drama, art, and software. IPHS's course curriculum is arranged thematically (e.g. law and disorder, harmony and entropy), and thus also makes use of multidisciplinary materials purchased within other library department budgets: English, History, Political Science, Classics, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Art History, and Music. Books purchased for IPHS fill interdisciplinary areas within the history of ideas and specifically apply to student research assignments.

Some of the topics and authors of particular interest to the program include: Dante, Shakespeare, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Baudelaire, Proust, Kafka, and Woolf.

The LBIS liaison selects materials based upon Choice Book Reviews, the YBP history of ideas profile, knowledge of current IPHS courses, reviews in journals such as the American Historical Review, the Journal of the History of Ideas, The New York Review of Books, and MLA Quarterly, as well as catalogs from academic presses.


The IPHS program covers vast temporal and geographic periods. However, the program collects especially heavily in materials pertaining to Ancient Greece, Medieval Rome, Renaissance Italy, Modern Europe and early twentieth century America. Also collected are works that provide thematic treatments of intellectual history (modernism, post-modernism, authority, identity) and new translations of primary works that also contain the text in its original language (dual-language editions). The Loeb Classical Library is an example of a core set for the department, and is a standing order in the library budget. Other titles collected emphasize research/interpretative methods for undergraduates. Materials are purchased within either the IPHS monograph budget or the audio-visual budget, as appropriate. General reference materials receive funding from LBIS' general reference monograph budget.


Monographs constitute the majority of items purchased. The interdisciplinary nature of the program makes it difficult to isolate databases for the program, but the MLA bibliography, Historical Abstracts, America History and Life, Philosopher's Index, Academic Search Premiere, and full-text Electronic Journal Center and JSTOR access enhance resource access. ArtSTOR provides access digital access to images of masterpieces of Western Art. The program does not have limitations on publication dates.


Books, videos (VHS & DVD), and miscellaneous electronic  resources are all represented within the IPHS collection. Maps, digital or analog, are important for the department; Kenyon¡'s reference collection holds historical atlases and other sources for students.


Primarily English, with some books in other languages with an accompanying English translation.


The program focuses primarily on European (Eastern and Western), Latin American, and North American intellectual history. But the program does not exclude interpretation/participation of other traditions.


No restrictions exist on chronology.




Kenyon's participation in both CONSORT and OhioLINK expands access to monographs. Interlibrary loan provides access to journal articles not held by our collection. [Does the department use the slide library?]

Bibliographic instruction sessions are available by request. ERes (electronic course reserves with chat and bulletin board options) is available by request.

Specialized support for information technology includes cross-platform help with digital images (scanning, editing, dowinloading), creating and maintaining web pages, and digital video (I-movie, Canon GL-1).


March 8, 2004 (2nd draft). Revised Fall 2010.


This is not applicable because IPHS spans so many disciplines.

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