The Scout Report for Social Sciences - October 3, 2000

October 3, 2000

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison

The target audience of the new Scout Report for Social Sciences is faculty, students, staff, and librarians in the social sciences. Each biweekly issue offers a selective collection of Internet resources covering topics in the field that have been chosen by librarians and content specialists in the given area of study.

The Scout Report for Social Sciences is also provided via email once every two weeks. Subscription information is included at the bottom of each issue.

In This Issue


Learning Resources

New Data

Current Awareness

In The News


The Louisiana And Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) -- LSU Libraries
The Louisiana State University Libraries maintain a vast collection of materials relevant to their state's regional history. Recognized as one of the nation's premier repositories for materials relating to the antebellum plantation, Civil War, and Reconstruction South, the LLMVC contains over 10,000,000 items, including the papers of individuals and families; records of plantations, merchants, and financial institutions; and the records of political, social, and labor organizations. While most of these individual items are not available online, the Website provides an extensive subject catalog of the resources available at the LLMVC as well as descriptions of the individual collections and links to various options for searching the collection through engines offered by LSU libraries and others. Selected items from the LLMVC can be found in exhibits offered by the libraries's Special Collections Website, the host site for LLMVC. [DC]
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Two From Harpweek
Presidential Elections, 1860-1884
Library of Congress Political Prints, 1766-1876 [Java]
Harpweek (last reviewed in the April 8, 2000 Scout Report for Social Sciences) recently launched two new sites featuring nineteenth-century political cartoons and prints. The first offers close to 200 political cartoons and prints commenting on US presidential elections between 1860 and 1876 (1880 and 1884 will be added in October). The images are drawn from periodicals such as Harper's Weekly,Vanity Fair, and Puck, as well as the Library of Congress political print collection, and feature famous cartoonists and artists such as Thomas Nast, Matt Morgan, A.B. Frost, and Joseph Keppler. The cartoons and prints are organized by election and candidate, and are displayed with captions and links to additional information such as a timeline, campaign issues, political tactics, and biographies. The second site features an electronic version of Bernard F. Reilly, Jr.'s well-regarded annotated catalog of the LOC's collection of American political prints. Users may browse the catalog by time period, topic, or name, or conduct a keyword search. As with the first site, the images are offered as large thumbnails with a caption. Combined, these two sites are an outstanding resource for researchers and students of American political history and the history of political prints and cartoons. [MD]
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Human Rights Watch: Five New Reports
Seeking Protection: Addressing Sexual and Domestic Violence in Tanzania's Refugee Camps
Owed Justice: Thai Women Trafficked into Debt Bondage in Japan
Turkey: Human Rights And The European Union Accession Partnership
Nipped in the Bud: Suppression of the China Democracy Party
Unfair Advantage: Workers' Freedom of Association in the United States under International Human Rights Standards
In September, Human Rights Watch posted five new reports on their Website. The first, Seeking Protection: Addressing Sexual and Domestic Violence in Tanzania's Refugee Camps, is a 151-page indictment of the United Nation's High Commission for Refugees and the Tanzanian host government's failure to address violence against Burundi women refugees in Tanzanian camps in a "timely and effective manner, despite ample evidence that women's lives were in danger in their homes and in the general camp community." Owed Justice: Thai Women Trafficked into Debt Bondage in Japan also deals with the violation of women's rights as it examines the trafficking of Thai women who are delivered under false pretenses into atrocious labor conditions in Japan where they are often forced to work for years to pay off the "debt" of their transport. Turkey: Human Rights And The European Union Accession Partnership is a 31-page report detailing Human Rights Watch's recommendations for the EU's Accession Partnership Document laying out the human rights criteria Turkey will have to meet to be granted EU membership. Nipped in the Bud: Suppression of the China Democracy Party examines the situation of more than 30 people imprisoned for their role in the China Democracy Party and argues for their immediate release. Turning to US issues, Unfair Advantage: Workers' Freedom of Association in the United States under International Human Rights Standards reports on nationwide repeated violations, across all levels of employment, of federal laws and international standards protecting workers's rights to organize, to bargain collectively, and to strike. [DC]
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21 Million Children's Health: Our Shared Responsibility -- The Medical Child Support Working Group's Report [.pdf, 251 pages]
Executive Summary (15 pages):
Published by an independent agency established by congressional law in 1998 to assess efforts to enforce medical support orders by state child support enforcement agencies, this report offers 76 recommendations for the improvement of health coverage for children. Currently, some three million of the children eligible for mandated State coverage are not receiving it. The recommendations include measures for streamlining and simplifying the process to make access to coverage easier as well as coordinating medical child support with the current State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The report is written in accessible language, and the layout foregrounds recommendations and relevant quotations from experts and participants. [DC]
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Internet Resources -- Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)
Information architecture: Tools for cutting-edge Web developers
Diversity Web sources in higher education: Looking at our rich heritage
In the last month, "Internet Resources," an ongoing, online publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), has offered two new annotated bibliographies. In September, the ACRL released "Information architecture: Tools for cutting-edge Web developers," which reviews Internet resources dealing with Website navigation, labeling/ naming schemes, and Website structure. Last week, "Diversity Web sources in higher education: Looking at our rich heritage" was posted. It identifies Web sources for minority studies "with an emphasis on sites that include [an] institutional vision on diversity issues, recruitment of minority faculty, library organizations working to achieve diversity, and related issues." [DC]
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Technical Advisory Service for Images (TASI) [.pdf]
Funded by the Joint Information Systems Committee of the United Kingdom and hosted by the University of Bristol, TASI offers detailed advice and support for the academic community "on the digital creation, storage and delivery of digital image archives." The main resources of their Website include an online guide offered in both HTML and .pdf formats which covers digital image data capture and creation, access and delivery, and data collections management; an extensive glossary of technical terms relating to these issues; case studies of major ongoing digitization projects; and an annotated, lengthy list of existing digital image archives on the Web in various disciplines. TASI also collaborated earlier this year with the UK's Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) in the compiling of Creating Digital Resources for the Visual Arts: Standards and Good Practice (see the January 28, 2000 Scout Report). [DC]
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Beyond Six Billion: Forecasting the World's Population -- National Academy Press
As part of their continuing practice of making recently published titles available in their entirety online, the National Academy Press last month posted Beyond Six Billion: Forecasting the World's Population, written by the National Research Council's Panel on Population Projections. The study examines national and global population projections from such agencies as the United Nations Population Division, the World Bank, and the US Census Bureau. The panel assesses the "assumptions behind the projections of these various agencies, estimates their accuracy and uncertainty, evaluates the implications of current demographic research, and recommends changes in protocol and new research that might improve projections." [DC]
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Learning Resources

Two on Time:
Tempus Fugit: Time Flies -- Nelson Atkins Museum of Art [JavaScript]
On Time -- National Museum of American History [Flash4]
These two online exhibits from prominent American museums explore the character of time -- its impact on our daily lives and its ability to shape and reform human consciousness. The first site, Tempus Fugit: Time Flies, is a superb exhibit from the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art that uses items from the museum to exemplify different understandings of time. The exhibit features sections on 20th Century Time, World Times, and Conservation Time. Twentieth-century time considers the changing nature of time in the technological age by examining the innovations in graphic and plastic arts inspired by an altered sense of time. The exhibit includes works by Muybridge, Edward Hopper, Salvador Dali, Kandinsky, Rothko, Roy Lichtenstein, and others. The second section, World Times, focuses on the different conceptions of time embodied in art from primitive times to the present and ranges from ancient Native American to Medieval Europe to ancestral Africa to the deeply cosmological perceptions of time in ancient Indian civilizations. Conservation Time takes visitors behind the scenes to see how conservation science can uncover the history of a work's composition and the changes wrought upon it over the course of its lifetime. The Website also offers ideas for teaching using the exhibits. In sum, this is an elegantly constructed and intelligent Website. To be sure, users will want to set aside some time for it as the graphics enforce their own meditative pace upon the viewer. The second Website is from the National Museum of American History and concentrates more straightforwardly on how humans have measured time from 1700 to the present. The exhibit presents text and images describing the history of keeping time from the century immediately preceding the industrial revolution -- when sundials were still in use -- to our present age of digital access and a global village that never sleeps. [DC]
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In the Mind of an Architect -- Australian Broadcasting Corporation [RealPlayer, Shockwave]
The companion site to a three-part documentary recently broadcast on Australian television, In the Mind of an Architect is an unusually comprehensive supplement to its televised source. To begin with, the entire transcript of each episode is posted here with accompanying photos, and while there are surprisingly no video clips, artfully edited slide presentations with audio tracks from the episodes provide an effective substitute. The site also gives profiles of the featured architects and buildings as well as collections of quotations from the architects on several recurring themes, including the politics of architecture, inspiration in design, and the often ongoing struggle to convince clients to trust an architect's vision. A link to a radio broadcast about Australian architecture featuring the documentary's producer and other Australian authors writing on architecture is provided as are virtual tours of some buildings, interactive quizzes on the episodes, and a list of related links. What's most impressive about the Website, however, is simply the quality of the documentary's consideration of what architecture is and how it defines not only its creators but also its inhabitants. [DC]
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Teaching History With Technology
This new, free, biannual online journal is designed to help middle school and high school history and social studies teachers better integrate technology into their classrooms. Hosted and sponsored by the Cary Academy in Cary, North Carolina, each issue will feature three or four articles by teachers explaining how they have incorporated technology to enhance their students's learning experiences. For instance, the inaugural issue features pieces on students creating an online museum, Web-enhanced courses and online learning, virtual field-trips, and online research and student-produced Webpages. Submissions are welcome, and information is provided at the site. [MD]
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Modern American Poetry: A Multimedia Companion to the Anthology of Modern American Poetry (Oxford University Press, 2000)
This companion to the recent publication by Oxford University Press of the Anthology of Modern American Poetry edited by Cary Nelson seeks to overcome the inherent limits to critical annotation in any printed anthology by placing such material in cyberspace, where the economic and physical limitations of paper don't apply. Designed to be under perpetual construction, the Website currently includes excerpts from interesting analyses of poems, biographical information, relevant illustrations (such as book jackets, broadsides, paintings, drawings, comics, and photographs), manuscripts, drafts of poems, bibliographies, historical background, statements on poetics, interviews, mini-essays on important issues pertinent to a given poet, book reviews, archival resources, study questions, and syllabi based around the anthology. Eventually the site intends to offer, at minimum, a biography and bibliography for every poet, but the primary materials currently on site are short exegeses of poems or historical background information on selected poems, particularly those from less well-known authors. In sum, while this Website is not as exciting as it may one day be, it already offers a far richer supplement to the anthology's poems than any critical edition could. We recommend for particular attention the short, full-length essay "No Histories but in Things: Robert Pinsky's Rhizomatic X-Rays" by Roger Gilbert, analyzing Robert Pinsky's fine poem "Shirt"; and the extensive archival material for Harry Crosby, an early 20th-century avant-garde writer and precursor to the LANGUAGE poets. The Website invites contributions of all sorts relevant to the works featured in the printed anthology (note: this Website does not contain the poems themselves). While the editorial policy was not clear to us on our visit, we assume such contributions are being solicited mainly from scholars and will be subjected to editorial review. [DC]
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The Traditional Architecture of East Asia
Designed by graduate students in architecture at Yale and the University of Virginia, this Website presents the largest online collection of East Asian architectural photos, featuring China, Japan, North and South Korea, Cambodia, and Thailand. The site currently offers over 1,400 photographs covering interior, exterior, close-up, and long-shot views of 115 architectural sites, including such places as China's Forbidden City and the Great Wall, Japan's Kyoto Imperial Palace and Osaka Castle, South Korea's Munmyo Confucian Shrine and selected streets of Seoul, North Korea's War Cemetery, Cambodia's Angor Wat Temple, and many more. The pictures come in thumbnail and full-frame sizes and have brief, descriptive captions. (Some proceed in a manner that creates a kind of "virtual tour"; others are somewhat more haphazard.) This fall, the creators are scheduled to add hundreds of more photos from Korean sites. [DC]
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Sporting the motto "It's your Congress. Learn to laugh," this commercial Website offers insightful information delivered in a humorous vein on the US Congress and its members. Perhaps the most useful feature of the site is the free YourCongress Watch E-mail Service which lets visitors sign up to receive emails containing all of the statements made by their Senators or Representatives on the floor of Congress. The Your Money section features articles explaining the resilience of pork barrel spending, a translation of the budget into everyday English, and a discussion of the "54 Kings" -- the Senators and Representatives who control the lion's share of appropriations. There are also articles here about the typical congressperson's day; advice on how to really get your Representative to respond to your concerns (as opposed to receiving a machine-generated letter); a graphic comparison of the demographics of Congress vs. those of America (see just how underrepresented women are, how overrepresented lawyers, how fairly represented Baptists); and "Seven Surprising Things," telling us, for instance, that members of Congress actually work hard -- though they never read the bills they vote on. also offers a pay email service that will track any issue, Representative, or Senator. While is not as funny as the Daily Show, it's probably more informative. Note: when we visited the site, the section entitled Characters had no content. [DC]
[Back to Contents] Beyond the Fall: The Former Soviet Bloc in Transition, 1989-1999
Posted in August on, this photoessay by photojournalist Anthony Suau features 69 photographs of Eastern Europe during the time of its transition from an annex of the Soviet Union to a collection of independent republics. The photos are divided into five thematic sections and are supplemented with Suau's prose narrating his impressions of the people of these countries and the attitudes they brought to the revolutionary change sweeping over them. The images are mostly in black and white and reveal the startling beauty of an often rugged countryside and its peoples. The photos are also browseable by country, and the Website features a news archive of stories on the transition and aftermath published by[DC]
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The Rockefellers - American Experience (PBS)
This new companion Website to the PBS documentary The Rockefellers, to be aired on the third and fourth Mondays in October, features some fascinating additions to the information provided by the broadcast itself. In addition to a transcript of the broadcast and a timeline of the Rockefellers's history from 1839 to 1985, the Website posts primary documents giving insight into the business practices, politics, and personal temperament of John D. Rockefeller. Of particular note are an extended "conversation" between John D. Rockefeller and muckraking journalist Ida Tarbell that draws on comments made concerning such controversial events as the "Cleveland Massacre" -- Rockefeller's successful consolidation of about 75 oil refineries under his control in a one-time, massive buy-out, and muralist Diego Rivera's recollections on Rockefeller's decision to have his commissioned mural for the Rockefeller center summarily destroyed rather than have the head of Vladimir Lenin appear in it. There are also maps here, a teacher's guide, information about the Ludlow Massacre of miners under Rockefeller, and excerpts from Ida Tarbell's famous work of advocacy journalism, The History of the Standard Oil Company. Captain of Industry or Robber Baron, you decide. [DC]
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Blindness Resource Center
Recently revised, the Blindness Resource Center is an annotated directory of Websites dealing with issues of Internet access for the blind. The categories include accessible Web design, LYNX Web browser use, Net Tamer, access resources, Unix access, Java access, Windows access, and other blindness links. The sites presented are sharply-focused and provide specific information and instructions for the blind and support staff on software designed to improve access, as well as detailed advice to Webmasters on creating sites that are accessible. The Website is sponsored and maintained by the New York Institute for Special Education. [DC]
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New Data

Poverty in the United States, 1999 -- US Census Bureau [.pdf, 88 pages]
Press Release:
Last Tuesday, the US Census Bureau released their annual report on poverty. The report gives data on poverty rates by selected characteristics -- age, race, nativity, family composition, work experience, and geography. Findings reveal that the nation's poverty rate dropped from 12.7 percent in 1998 to 11.8 percent in 1999, the lowest rate since 1979. In addition, "real median household income reached $40,816, the highest level ever recorded by the Census Bureau." The report also announces the lowest level of child poverty since 1979 -- 16.9 percent -- and a record low for African-Americans of 23.6 percent. The report can be examined in full in .pdf format or in selected sections in HTML. [DC]
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College Quality and the Earnings of Recent College Graduates [.pdf]
Published last Friday by the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES), this report "examines the association between factors such as selectivity and other institutional characteristics, and the earnings of recent college graduates 5 years after graduation." The report's data are drawn from the 1980 High School and Beyond (HS&B) study combined with information about courses, grades, credits, and credentials contained in the Post Secondary Education Transcript Study. The findings correlating institutional profile to postgraduate salary indicate a significant gender gap. For men, the institution mattered significantly less than their major or personal background in determining postgraduate income, while for women "institutional characteristics were almost equally important in affecting earnings (5 percent versus 4 percent)." The report is offered in .pdf format with a hyperlinked sidebar table of contents. [DC]
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The California Latino Demographic Databook
Posted by the University of California-Berkeley's principal archive for social science statistics, this Website features selected data from The California Policy Research Center's publication, The California Latino Demographic Databook. The data are presented in the form of figures, tables, and demographic maps and cover such topics as the racial/ ethnic composition of California's population; percentages of Hispanics in California, county by county; Immigrants Admitted as Permanent California Residents from Selected Countries; Size of Hispanic and Non-Hispanic Households by Nativity, Period of Entry, and Citizenship; Percent of Californians in Selected Occupations by Detailed Origin; and much more. The entire databook can be ordered from the California Policy Research Center through a link on the Website. [DC]
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State and County QuickFacts -- US Census
This new handy reference resource from the US Census Bureau allows users to access frequently requested Census Bureau information at the national, state, and county level. The site is navigated via a pull-down menu or interactive map, both of which produce tables of facts about the people, businesses, and geography for that state compared to the country as a whole. Another pull-down menu (or map) leads to similar information on the county level (compared to the state as a whole). In addition, each page offers a link to more detailed information from the Census Bureau, such as income and poverty estimates, economic censuses, county business profiles, and government finances, among other offerings. Quick facts for the country as a whole can also be accessed from the main page. All in all, a useful resource for quick and basic census information. [MD]
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Current Awareness
(For links to additional current awareness on tables of contents, abstracts, preprints, new books, data, conferences, etc., visit the The Scout Report for Social Sciences Current Awareness Metapage:

Youth, Voting and the 2000 Election -- Kaiser Family Foundation/ MTV Survey
Press release:
Press Release [.pdf, 2 pages]:
Survey Results [.pdf, 14 pages]:
Last week, the Kaiser Family Foundation and MTV published online the results of their election-year survey of 800 18-24 year olds. The survey found that substantially fewer young people were planning to vote in the upcoming elections than the national adult average (46% to 64%). The top three reasons cited for not planning to vote were "a lack of information on the candidates (60%); the belief that they can make more of a difference getting involved in their community than voting (58%); and the sense that 'politics is just about money and lying and I don't want to involve myself in it'" (39%). Nonetheless, respondents did have strong opinions on a range of issues, including overwhelming support for tougher gun control laws, comprehensive sex education in schools, and hate crime legislation to protect gays and lesbians. Opinions were much more closely split on issues of abortion (with gender making no statistical difference in responses) and affirmative action. Overall, the survey is a fascinating glimpse into the political attitudes of a generation bound to inherit the legacy of Clinton and his immediate successor. [DC]
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New Working Papers

Carothers, Thomas. "The Clinton Record on Democracy Promotion" -- Carnegie Endowment for International Peace [.pdf, 18 pages]

Frey, William H. "Regional Shifts in America's Voting-Aged Population: What Do They Mean for National Politics?" -- Population Studies Center, University of Michigan [.pdf, 19 pages]

Hofferth, Sandra L. and John F. Sandberg. "Changes in American Children's Time, 1981-1997" -- Population Studies Center, University of Michigan [.pdf, 37 pages]

Kaleda, Saulius Lukas. "Extension of the preliminary rulings procedure outside the scope of Community law: 'The Dzodzi line of cases'"
.pdf version [58 pages]

MacLean, Alair and Robert M. Hauser. "Socioeconomic Status and Depression among Adult Siblings" -- Center for Demography and Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison [.pdf, 62 pages]

Morenoff, Jeffrey D., Robert J. Sampson, and Stephen W. Raudenbush. "Integrating Structural Characteristics, Neighborhood Social Processes, and the Spatial Dynamics of Urban Violence." -- Population Studies Center, University of Michigan [.pdf, 35 pages]

Smismans, Stijn. "The European Economic and Social Committee: Towards Deliberative Democracy Via a Functional Assembly"
.pdf version [22 pages]:
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New Think Tank Policy Papers and Briefs

Center for the Study of Democracy:
Meyer, David. "Claiming Credit: The Social Construction of Movement Success"

The Century Foundation:
"Enforcing a Ban on Internet Gambling" (Idea Brief, September 16, 2000) [.pdf, 4 pages]

Institute for Policy Studies:
Foreign Policy in Focus (October 2000)
Youngers, Coletta A. "In Focus: Peru: Democracy & Dictatorship"

RAND Institute:
"Releasing Small Firms from Superfund Liability: What Will It Cost?"

"Helping Adolescents Resist Drugs"

"Tracking Changes in Behavioral Health Services: How Has Managed Care Changed Care?"

"Using Web-Based Testing For Large-Scale Assessment" [.pdf, 40 pages]

Urban Institute:
Maag, Elaine and Diane Lim Rogers. "The New Federalism and State Tax Policies toward the Working Poor"
.pdf version [39 pages]:

Sorensen, Elaine and Chava Zibman. "A Look at Poor Dads Who Don't Pay Child Support" [.pdf, 34 pages]:
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New Offerings from Academic Publishers

Association of American University Presses: New Releases

Baker&Taylor Academia -- Upcoming Books to Buy (October 2000)

Cambridge University Press

Basic Books: New Releases

Thela Thesis -- Just Published

Perseus Publishing -- Book News (click on category)
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Southwest/ Texas Popular Culture/ American Culture Associations (SW-TX PCA/ ACA) Annual Meeting
March 7-10, 2001
Albuquerque, New Mexico

2001 National Association for Ethnic Studies (NAES) Conference: Race, Ethnicity and Pedagogy in the 21st Century
(29th Annual National Conference)
March 29-31, 2001
New Orleans, Louisiana

The 2001 Joint International Conference of the Association for Computers and the Humanities and the Association for Literary and Linguistic Computing
June 13-17, 2001
New York University
New York, New York

Second International Convention of Asia Scholars (ICAS)
August 9-12, 2001
Freie Universitat
Berlin, Germany
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New Tables of Contents/ Abstracts/ Full texts for Periodicals

Rand Review: Domestic Policy for a More Perfect Union (Full text)
Summer 2000
.pdf version [32 pages]:

Ariadne (Full text)
Issue 25 (September 2000)

Journal of Modern History (Table of contents only)
Volume 72, Number 3 (September 2000)

Internet Archaeology (Full text)
Issue 8 (Summer 2000)
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Job Guides

H-Net Job Guide

The Chronicle of Higher Education Job Openings
Social Science

Academic Employment Network (By State)

American College Personnel Association: ACPA Ongoing Placement Listings

Academic (Update of "Jobs in Higher Education" site)
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In The News

The First Presidential Debate: Playing the Expectations Game
1. "Gore, Bush Ready Themselves for First Debate"
2. Yahoo!.News: "Bush Hits Trail; Gore Finishes Debate Preparation" (Reuters)
3. Presidential Debates 2000 [RealPlayer]
4. PBS: Debating Our Destiny [RealPlayer, .pdf]
5. Commission on Presidential Debates
6. American Enterprise Institute: Transition to Governing Project: How Would Bush and Gore Govern? [RealPlayer]
7. American Heritage Foundation: Issues 2000: The Candidate's Briefing Book [.pdf]
8. DebateThis!: Open Up the Presidential Debates!
9. Transcript of Meet the Press, October 1, 2000 -- Nader and Buchanan "Debate"
With polls over the weekend showing Al Gore and George W. Bush in a statistical dead heat in the Presidential race, tonight's first of three Presidential debates promises to draw a large and interested audience. Not since the election of 1976 when Jimmy Carter ran against Gerald Ford has the race been this close going into a major debate. With the stakes so high, both sides are trying to lower expectations so as to be able to claim victory afterward. Staffers for Governor Bush have called Al Gore "the best political debater of modern times," while Gore has taken on several "real people" acquired along the campaign trail to serve as "advisors" for the debate in the hopes of showing what the national press has dubbed Gore's "human side." During the debate, Bush, like Ronald Reagan in 1980, will have the onus of showing that he has sufficient grasp of the issues to be President. A gaffe such as not knowing the President of Chechnya could be costly. Gore, on the other hand, must avoid coming across as stiff and mean-spirited -- perceptions that, for some, characterized his demeanor in the primary debates with Senator Bill Bradley. Some analysts also believe that Gore needs to make headway against the desire for change that, in the wake of the Clinton scandals, polls show most voters have. While the debate will be closely analyzed by pundits and dexterously spun by both camps, a decisive blow for either candidate is unlikely. Only time will tell if these debates take their place in history as relatively unimportant in determining the outcome of a close election, as was the case in 1976, or as a deciding factor as happened in the even closer election of 1960 when John F. Kennedy's well-groomed, telegenic presence gave him a crucial edge over a sweaty Richard Nixon.

ABCNews (1) and Yahoo!News (2) bring readers up to date on the candidates's preparations. Presidential Debates 2000 from C-Span (3) offers the schedule and location of the upcoming debates as well as a video archive of the complete broadcast of a number of past Presidential debates (RealPlayer required). Visitors to PBS's site (4), Debating our Destiny, can also read transcripts of past debates as well as interviews with previous candidates. A teachers's guide offers lesson plans for using the site in K-12 classrooms. The Commission on Presidential Debates, which has overseen the Presidential debates since 1988, sponsors a Website (5) featuring profiles of each debate since 1960, online surveys, and the chance for voters to suggest topics and questions for the upcoming debates. The American Enterprise Institute in conjunction with the Brookings and Hoover Institutions posts the transcripts and videos of several recent conferences (6) on the probable policy orientations of Gore and Bush should they be elected (RealPlayer required). The American Heritage Foundation has recently placed online a book that may well figure in Governor Bush's preparations: Issues 2000: The Candidate's Briefing Book(7), "a nonpartisan handbook for conservative candidates seeking national office: a comprehensive guide to the domestic, foreign, and defense policy issues that will be part of the national debate." Run by the Student Environmental Action Coalition (SEAC), DebateThis! (8) advocates opening up the Presidential debates to third-party candidates like Pat Buchanan and Ralph Nader. Their Website provides background information on the political affiliations of the Commission on Presidential Debates, advice on how to pressure the Networks and politicians to open up the debates, and links to related sources. In a similar vein, the online edition of The Washington Post(9) has made available the transcript of Sunday's edition of NBC's Meet the Press at which Nader and Buchanan appeared together and took questions from Tim Russert. (This is likely as close as the two major third-party candidates are going to get to appearing in a nationally-televised debate.) [DC]
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