Meet the Author: Dr. Emily Fox-Kales!

On Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 12PM in 90 Snell, Northeastern University Libraries will hold another one of its unique and enlightening Meet the Author events. Come hear author and Northeastern professor, Dr. Emily Fox-Kales, talk about her latest book, Body Shots. Body Shots exposes the scandalous yet disturbing standards centered around Hollywood and the repeating message that thin is beautiful. In her research, Dr. Fox-Kales explores how Hollywood uses films, celebrities, and social media in order to propagate obsessive weight control, self-scrutiny and vigilance, and excessive exercise. By utilizing her studies of psychology, cinema analysis, and gender studies, Dr. Fox-Kales analyzes these Hollywood values and how it unfortunately has become the norm in today’s society to obsess over weight and eating habits. During the Meet the Author event, Dr. Fox-Kales will discuss her new novel in further detail and also sign books following the talk. Books will be available for purchase at a discounted rate and provided by the NU Bookstore. This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. For more information about our Meet the Author series and other related programs, click here!

Northeastern Researchers Study Gossip

Northeastern researchers recently published a study on the impact that negative gossip has on the brain’s ability to remember a person or face. According to their research, test subjects were more likely to remember a person if they heard a piece of negative gossip about them when they were shown a picture of that person’s face. If volunteers spent more time hearing positive connotations about a person they were more likely to forget their face. Interestingly, Dr. Lisa Barrett, Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, believes that the result of this study directly helps people remember and avoid people who may cause them harm. Snell Library also contains some resources on the subject like the online report, The Relative Effect of Positive and Negative Humorous Gossip on Perceptions of the Gossiper and the Target of the Gossip, which discusses a study on the perceptions and effects of gossip and gossipers. Other related articles can be found by doing a Discovery or NuCat search on the library’s homepage ( for subjects like “gossip”, “psychology of the brain”, “memory”, etc. You can also view Northeastern’s recent interview with Lisa Feldman Barrett discussing her study on YouTube. In addition, you can find more of her work in IRis, Northeastern’s Institutional Repository.

5 Ways to Maximize Your Creativity

Last week, creativity and brain expert Dr. Shelley Carson visited Snell Library. She shared these five tips for maximizing your creativity. 1. Continue to actively learn and gather information throughout your life. 2. Turn off the automatic ‘censor’ in your brain (e.g. “that won’t work because…”). 3. Carry around a notepad or recorder– breakthroughs often happen in the strangest of places, when your censors are turned down. 4. Read about and hang out with other creative people 5. Don’t be afraid of failure. Creative people fail. Dr. Carson’s book, Your Creative Brain, is available for checkout at Snell Library. Thank you, Dr. Carson, for encouraging us all to be engaged explorers of the Universe.

Final Paper Writers Block? Read These

Some Friday afternoon journal-publishing humor: The Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis has published two research studies, about 30 years apart, on writer’s block. ⇒ From 1974, D. Upper, “The Unsuccessful Self-Treatment of a Case of ‘Writer’s Block’ “ (PDF) ⇒ From 2007, R. Didden et al., “A Multisite Cross-Cultural Replication of Upper’s (1974) Unsuccessful Self-Treatment of Writer’s Block” (PDF) You have to see these to believe them, but they were honest-to-goodness published in a peer-reviewed scholarly journal. Those wacky psychologists…

New: Use the DSM-IV Online!

The long-awaited e-version of the DSM-IV TR has arrived.  (Its formal name is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition, text revision, 2000.)  The Libraries’ new subscription to this resource means that NU students, faculty, and staff can now access the full text version from anywhere.  If this isn’t a household name to you, I should explain that the “DSM” is produced by the American Psychiatric Association and is considered the essential tool for mental health providers to diagnose patients in this country.  It is likely that you or someone you know, at some point, has been affected by this document.  It undergoes revisions approximately every 6 to 10 years, as researchers bring to light new information, which in turn changes the professional view and body of knowledge about how mental disorders are categorized and subsequently treated. You can read more about this diagnostic tool, and the history of diagnosis and classification of psychiatric disorders, in the article “Mental and Behavioral Disorders, Diagnosis and Classification of”: doi:10.1016/B0-08-043076-7/01285-7 . (This article comes from our subscription resource called the International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences.) To find the text of the DSM-IV TR itself, link here or go to the “All Databases” A-Z list and scroll down to “StatRef.”  This resource allows five people to use it at one time. (Other titles within StatRef vary from 1 to 5 users.) This is a frequently-used resource at Snell Library; we hope you will enjoy this improvement in access!