Discovering Countries and Cultures at UC Libraries


On November 15 UC Libraries hosted an event focused on exploring  countries and cultures. Librarians Pam Bach and Olya Hart engaged students in planning the event. During brainstorming sessions students suggested discussing the phenomenon of culture shock and sharing what surprised, puzzled, or scared them when they came to the U.S. At the suggestion of Srinivasa “Sid” Thatham, President of the Indian Students Association, we started the event with the video American culture shock for international students, which inspired a lively discussion. Continue reading Discovering Countries and Cultures at UC Libraries

Travel the World with UC Libraries! Destination for Today: Bolivia

Bolivia_flag_smFeatured country: Bolivia.

Red on the Bolivian flag symbolizes valor (e.g., the blood of patriots spilled in battle); green, hope and the fertility of the land; and the yellow band in the center represents the country’s vast mineral resources.

Point of interest: Tiwanaku (Tiahuanaco/Tiahuanacu).
This pre-Columbian archaeological site in la Paz is a UNESCO World Heritage

Sacred Statue in Tiwanaku - Bolivia
Sacred Statue in Tiwanaku – Bolivia

Site. Tiwanaku is believed to have obtained its name from an Aymara term, taypikala (“Stone in the Center”). Founded around 200 BC, this ancient city is  considered an important predecessor to the Inca Empire. Tiwanaku has outstanding stone carvings and ancient buildings that exemplify the Andean pre-Hispanic civilization.

 Source: Global Road Warrior.

Featured library resource: Collins world atlas : clear, detailed, and up-to-date mapping, latest stunning satellite images, UNESCO world heritage sites.  London : HarperCollins, 2010.
Langsam Reference Oversize G1021 .H59846 2010  

Posted by Olga Hart

Travel the World with UC Libraries! Destination for Today: Belgium

belgiumFeatured country: Belgium

Did you know the term “duffel bag” derives from the Belgian town of Duffel, where the thickly woven bags were first manufactured?  Or that Belgian beer and chocolate are world-renowned?  Approximately the size of the state of Maryland, the Kingdom of Belgium is located in western Europe, surrounded on three sides by The Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, and France to the south.  Because of its strategic location, Belgium is one of the cultural centers of Europe, and the capital of Brussels is the seat of many European Union offices.  Flemish, French, and German are the official languages of Belgium, however many people speak English, as well as Spanish, Arabic, and Dutch because historically the country has been a crossroads for immigrants.  Belgium was devastated by the World Wars of the 20tch century, but most of its centuries-old castles and public buildings have survived, and today its vibrant culture make Belgium a nation of fashion, international commerce, and tourism in such beautiful cities as Bruges and Antwerp.

Source: CultureGrams.

Featured library resource: Foreign Information by Country.

On one of Antwerp’s city squares.

By Kevin Grace

No, this street sculpture in Antwerp isn’t a tribute to UC’s Greg Hand.












Travel the World with UC Libraries! Destination for Today: Bangladesh

_51528592_bangladesh_mapFeatured country: Bangladesh.

Fact: Formerly East Pakistan, Bangladesh came into being only in 1971, when the two
parts of Pakistan split after a bitter war which drew in neighboring India.

Source of the country information and image: BBC News Profile – Bangladesh.

Featured resource: Foreign Information By Country (prepared by the University of Colorado Government Documents Department).

Posted by Olga Hart

Travel the World with UC Libraries: Destination for Today: Bahrain


Featured country: Bahrain

Bahrain is nestled on the western side of the Arabian Gulf, between Saudi Arabia and Qatar. It is connected to Saudi Arabia by a causeway.

Interesting facts about Bahrain:

  • Bahrain consists of 33 islands, only 3 of which are inhabited.
  • Bahrain’s al-Khamis Mosque is the oldest Islamic structure in the Gulf region.

Source: CultureGrams

Featured library resource: Background Notes/Country Fact Sheets. See a report on Bahrain at

Posted by Olga Hart

Travel the World with UC Libraries! The Destination for Today: Azerbaijan

This post continues the series featuring library resources about the countries represented by the UC international community.

9flagFeatured country: Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan is located in southwestern Asia between Iran and Russia, it has a 713-kilometer (443-mi) coastline on the Caspian Sea.
Interesting fact about Azerbaijan: Azerbaijan features 9 of the Earth’s 11 climatic zones in various locations throughout the country, making it unique from a climatological perspective. Azerbaijan’s climatic zones range from a semi-desert to a moderate area by the Caspian Sea.
Source: Global Road Warrior
Feature resource: Climate (in the Country Information CampusGuide).

Posted by Olga Hart

UC Libraries Welcome New International Students

UC Libraries’ faculty and staff are happy to welcome new international students who are learning about the campus and visiting libraries this week. On Thursday morning over 250 undergraduate international students got introduced to key library resources and  services through an interactive orientation session. During one of the orientation activities students and orientation leaders put star stickers for their home locations on the maps.

We hope that many more new and returning faculty and students will put stars on the U.S. and world maps on the chalkboard inside Langsam Library.

This post continues the series featuring library resources about the countries represented by the UC international community.

Albania_flag_Today’s featured country: Albania.
Source: CultureGrams
Featured resource: “Global Energy Market Research: Albania” (in Business Source Complete)
Our special connection: Albi, a peer mentor at Langsam InfoCommons, was born in Albania.