How about a novel about a dystopian future?

Since the installation of Donald Trump as president of the United States, George Orwell’s 1984 book has climbed up on the bestseller lists in the United States. This is believed to be associated with the use of the term “alternative facts” in an interview by President Donald Trump’s advisor, Keyllyanne Conway. Comparisons were made with the term “newspeak” used in Orwell’s novel from 1949.

1984 is about the oppression in a totalitarian state and a society where all individual freedom has been wiped out. Not even the language of the individual, thoughts or feelings are free. The invisible dictator is constantly present (“Big Brother sees you”). Orwell’s fear was an authoritarian Stalinist future in Britain. The threats may look different today, here’s a list of other known dystopis:

The Handmaid´s tale av Margret Atwood
The Handmaid’s tale is the much discussed story of Offred, service woman in the Republic of Gilead – formerly known as the United States of America – in a near future. In this religious dictatorship, women are no longer allowed to read and have only human dignity in the reproductive sense.

Brave new world av Aldous Huxley
Brave new world is a cornerstone of science fiction classic literature. In the distant future, World Controllers have created the perfect society through genetic manipulation of the population, brainwashing, free drugs and temporary sex. The only one who doesn’t seem to accept the role of a happy consumer is Bernard Marx, who has unnatural addictions for loneliness and disgust for loose that drives him to seek freedom. The only cure he knows can be found in the Savage Reservation, where the old terrible lifestyle remains.

Children of men av P. D. James
Children of men take place in England in 2021, at a time when no children are born on a quarter of a century because all men are hopelessly sterile. Old people are encouraged to commit suicide, immigrant workers are used as slaves and the last born generation, The Omegas, is beautiful but also known for acts of cruelty. The book was filmed in 2006 by Alfonso Cuarón and nominated for three Oscars.

Virutal light av William Gibson
Virtual Light is a detective story placed in a high-tech and multicultural, but decayed future. The place is San Francisco and the year 2005. The bike bid Chevette Washington accidentally end up on a party for filthy wealthy people. She happens to steal a pair of sunglasses by a cheeky guy, but the sunglasses, which do not have a thing to do with sun protection, contains optically stored information and the owner is ready to kill to get them back.

Text: Karin Ekström
Photo: Katharina Nordling

Reservation for book in Primo – here’s how it works

If you have been searching for a book in Primo and it turns out to be on loan (and you don’t need the book the same day), you might want to make a reservation for the book. Now you can easily make reservations on your own in Primo; here is a brief description of how it works:

1. Search for the book in Primo on the Library web page. When you locate the book in the hit list – click on the book title.

2. Log in to the system with your UB-account.

3. Click the Request link. It will only be available if all copies of the book are on loan. If there are copies available in the Library, the link will not be there (because it is not possible to reserve books when there are copies available for loan).

4. Click the Request button. If you want to, you can change the date for how long the request will be active (an opportunity if you know that if you don’t get the book before a certain date, you don’t need the book at all).

5. Once you’ve clicked Request you will get a notification that the request was activated. If you don’t get this notification – please contact the Information Point.

6. As soon as the book is available for you we place it on the shelf for reserved books. It will be placed alphabetically by your last name.

7. Now you’ll receive an e-mail notifying you that the book is waiting for you at the library. The book will be on the shelf, waiting for you for five days, the last pickup date will be specified in the e-mail we sent you.

8. Once you found the book, you borrow it in the machines next to the entrance as usual.


Notice: You cannot make a request for a book that you’ve already borrowed, or a book that you already have an active request for.

Text & picture: Katharina Nordling

Searching for books in Primo – here’s how it works!

To search in Primo is very much alike searching in our previous discovery system Summon, although there are some differences – in this blog post we will give you some guidance on how to use Primo to find books! Use the search box at the Library start page as usual.

  • Search with quotes to find an exact title “Business research methods” or truncate by changing the ending of a word to * when you want to find all variations of a specific word. For example method* (= method, methods, methodology, methodologys etc.).

  • A search will give you books, articles and other kinds of material, you can limit your results to only books by using the facet Resource Type.

  • Primo groups different editions and versions of the same book, click on the title to see all the editions and chose which one you want.

If there’s only one printed version and one electronic version, they are shown like this:

  • If you click an e-book you will be transferred to a page where you can read and/or download the book.
  • If you click on a printed book you will see how many copies we have of the book, on which shelf you can find it, if it’s available (or on loan). If it’s on loan, you will be able to make a request of the book. (Nota Bene! – at the moment you need to contact biblioteket@hb.se to request books! We are working to solve the issue and make it possible to reserve books in Primo.)

  • If you want Primo to limit your results to printed books in the Library – click The Library.
  • If you want Primo to limit your results to printed books that’s not on loan at the moment – click Available in the Library.

By clicking the pin you can save the book to a favourite list in your account, smart if you want to keep the information about the book for later. Click the large pin icon in the pink upper menu bar to get to your Favourites list and see your saved titles.

In the menu that appears when you click the three dots next to each title in your search result you can create references and more.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about how to use Primo!

Text: Sara Hellberg

Automatic renewals – here’s how it works!

Automatic renewals are one of the things included in the Library’s new borrowing regulations, which take effect Friday 31 March; here is a brief description of how automatic renewals work.

An automatic renewal is a renewal that’s made by the system. No one has to do anything, nor you or a librarian. However the system is stopped from doing a renewal of the loan if someone else has made a request for the book.

It all works like this:

You borrow a book at the Library; the loan period is either 7 or 21 days (depending on if it’s a course book or another book). When it’s two days left of the loan period the systems checks to see if it’s possible to renew the loan, then one of the following scenarios happen:

  1. No one has made a request for the book – the loan is renewed and you get a new loan period for 7 or 21 days (depending on if it’s a course book or another book).
  2. The loan cannot be renewed; you will be notified by e-mail and the original due date remains.

If scenario 1 happens, the same procedure will repeat two days before the new loan period ends.

In practice this means that you can keep the book until you get notified by e-mail that it’s time to return the book. But if you are going to use that practice – you need to check your e-mail address regularly, because in the end it’s you who are responsible of returning your books on time.

Text & Picture: Katharina Nordling

Think of what you write – make sure not to plagiarize!

Writing an essay or thesis may be perceived as difficult in many ways, one of them might be how to express yourself in a unique way, so you don’t plagiarize someone else’s work. The university has a good anti-plagiarism guide where you get insight into how to avoid, intentionally or inadvertently, plagiarizing. There is also information about what happens if it is discovered that someone has plagiarized.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Photo: Mostphotos

Is it time for your student thesis? Use the Library!

We are almost halfway through the spring semester and for some of our students the final sprint approaches – the student thesis needs to be written – here are some tips on how the library can help you when you’re writing your thesis.

One thing that is common for all students who write their thesis is that they need information to base the thesis on. It may be scientific articles, books on theoretical background or on methods used by students. No matter what kind of information you are looking for, it’s important to realize that the information is the foundation for your thesis. And it’s also important to realize that information seeking is often a very time consuming task, filled of setbacks. But if you make sure to structure your search for information it will all be a lot easier.

But do not despair! The librarians at the Library are experts in structuring information searches, and they are more than happy to help. Please, come to the Library and make sure to get a solid foundation to build your essay on.

There are two options if you want help of a librarian in your information search: You can come to our Search Lab – it is open every Thursday between 12:00-15:00. The Search Lab is staffed by one or two librarians who can help you to structure your searches. During this time the Language Lab is open as well. This means that you can ask language questions, or get tips on how to write your academic text at the same time.

Another option for help in your search for information is to come and get Search Support. Please come to the Information Point at the Library entrance, and the librarians manning the Information Point will help you with your searches.

Remember:  Use the Library, and the librarians, to get yourself a good foundation to build your essay on!

We also want to inform you that there are several posts in this blog full of great tips and advice for students writing their thesis. Here are some of them:

Text: Katharina Nordling
Photos: Colourbox