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New Student Exhibits at Mann

Mann Library has two new student exhibits that will be up through August.

Bycatch by Charlotte Tysall ’26 is a series of paintings focused on the plight of bycatch species–i.e. non-target species which are nonetheless caught, killed, or otherwise negatively impacted by commercial, large-scale fishing operations. The exhibit explores just a few of the many species which compose the approximately 40 percent of all marine catches which are unintended, including endangered animals like turtles and dolphins which get injured or killed before simply being dumped back into the water. Charlotte is studying Biological Sciences in the college of Arts and Sciences with a minor in Fine Arts. You can see more of Charlotte’s work on her Instagram feed:


Portal by James Parker is part of Portals in the Palace of the People, a series of installation pieces designed for public libraries which seeks to highlight the power of libraries to transport people to other places. Each piece consists of a small diorama and sound played on headphones. Both the diorama and the sound are related to the section of the library in which the piece is installed. The sounds give context to the content of the books adjacent to the piece. The portal thus works both ways: transporting participants to a new but related space while also bringing some of that space into the library to make the content of the surrounding books sing. James is an artist, composer, and a Cornell DMA graduate student. Learn more about this project and other work by James here:


Reunion 2024 @ Mann Library

Welcome Cornell alums and families! We’re so pleased to have you back on campus and in the library, and we hope that we’ll see many of you at Mann throughout the weekend’s festivities. A quick reminder of our hours this weekend:

  • Thursday, 8am to 6pm
  • Friday, 8am to 5pm
  • Saturday, noon to 5pm
  • Sunday, CLOSED

The following events are happening at Mann Library, Friday, June 7:


Open to the public: Introducing Vladimir Nabokov, Lepidopterist

10 – 11am, 2nd floor

Join us for a guided tour of Mann’s new exhibit on Nabokov’s work in butterfly science, with Cornell University Insect Collection & Mann Library (includes special collections viewing & family-friendly arts and crafts activities).


For Class of 1964 only: Fragile Legacy film screening

10am, Room 102 (off the Mann Library Lobby)

Members of the Class of ’64 are invited to join Cornell marine biologist Dr. Leslie Babonis and filmmaker David O. Brown for a film screening of Fragile Legacy, immediately followed by a viewing of Blaschka glass sculpture display on Mann’s 2nd floor.


Open to the public: Butterfly Sticker Workshop

11am – 12pm, CALS Zone (Room 112, off the Mann Library lobby)

Learn to make your own butterfly stickers at this interactive workshop with Andrea Strongwater and the Cornell University Insect Collection (CUIC).


And don’t miss these exhibits & displays throughout Mann Library during reunion weekend:


  • From Nabokov’s Net: Nabokov’s Contributions to Butterfly Science & the Cornell University Insect Collection (Mann Gallery, 2nd Floor)
  • No Mere Curios: Finding Nabokov’s Lepidopterist Inspiration in the Rare Books of Entomology (Mann Lobby, 1st Floor)
  • Bycatch, an exhibit by Charlotte Tysall ’26 (Top Shelf Gallery, 1st Floor)
  • Portal: Sound sculptures by James Parker ’26 (3rd Floor stacks)
  • The Magic of Mushrooms, artwork by students of Plant Sciences 2010 (2nd Floor)
  • Blaschka sea invertebrate models, on long-term loan from the Cornell Dept. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology (2nd Floor)

Mann is also participating in the campus-wide Library Scavenger Hunt for Young Explorers!

On Your Own Time, Mann Library puzzle area, (1st Floor)

Grab a bookmark and collect animal stickers while exploring different libraries across campus. Discover what each space holds for explorers, whether it’s a children’s reading nook, a coloring station, or a unique spot to relax in. Young adventurers will have a blast! Stations will be open during regular hours for each library, which vary. Please visit for library hours.

Other participating locations include: Catherwood Library, Clarke Africana Library, Cox Library of Music and Dance, Kroch Library Asia Collections, Mathematics Library, Olin Library, and Uris Library.

Congratulations Cornell Class of 2024!

All of us at Mann Library wish the graduating Cornell class of 2024 the very best for commencement weekend! We hope all graduates have a wonderful time celebrating with friends and loved ones – and hope the weather cooperates!


A few reminders about library services and spaces as we approach the long weekend:

  • Mann Library will be closed over Memorial Day weekend. We will close at 5pm on Friday, May 24 and will reopen at 8am on Tuesday, May 28. You can find our full summer hours schedule on our hours page.
  • You can find the hours for all Ithaca campus libraries on the main Cornell University Library website:
  • If you need to return library books while Mann is closed, please use our book drop in the breezeway between Mann Library and the Plant Sciences building. Please do not return laptops and other equipment to the book drop. For more information on returning library materials, including which libraries or book drop are accessible by car, please visit our Return Books webpage.
  • Still have questions? You can email or call us over the long weekend, and we will return your message when we return on Tuesday, May 28. For questions regarding returning library materials, contact or call (607) 255-3296. For research help, email or call (607) 255-2920.

Once again, congratulations, Cornell Class of 2024! We look forward to seeing you again at future reunion celebrations!

May Stressbusters

The end of the semester is in sight, and Mann Library and the CALS Zone are partnering up to bring some much-needed stressbusters programming to the Ag Quad. Stop by for some treats, some canine cuddles, or get crafty at our “butterfly break” event. Feeling competitive? Check out our Geoguessr Jam, co-hosted with the Cornell Mapping Society. And keep an eye out for free coffee, treats, and healthy snacks in the CALS Zone and at the Mann Help Desk throughout study week!


Guiding Eyes Puppies
Monday, May 13, 12-1pm
CALS Zone (Mann 112)
Feeling stressed? Some canine cuddles are just what the doctor ordered! Come meet some furry friends in the CALS Zone!


Butterfly Break
Tuesday, May 14, 3-4:30pm
CALS Zone (Mann 112)
Take a break from studying and come get crafty while enjoying the beauty of butterfly science!


Geoguessr Jam w/ Cornell Mapping Society
Wednesday, May 15, 5-6pm
CALS Zone (Mann 112)

Join the Cornell Mapping Society for some fast-paced rounds of team Geoguessr! From the Alps to the Australian Outback, refine your geography skills and learn how to locate yourself on Earth within seconds. Bring your own laptop.


Late-night Hours
Mann Library has extended hours during study week and finals. From Thursday, May 9, through Wednesday, May 15, Mann Library will have the following late-night hours:

  • Monday – Thursday, 8am to midnight
  • Friday, 8am to 10pm
  • Saturday, 10am to 10pm
  • Sunday, noon to midnight

Attention Night Owls: Don’t forget that the lobby, Stone Computer Classroom (Mann 103), and the CALS Zone (Mann 112) are 24/7 study spaces! So even after the library closes, you still have a variety of spaces to choose from if you’re studying late into the night.


See our full hours online: You can find the hours for the Mann Café, or order online, via the Cornell Dining website.

Right to Read April 26

Cornell University Library invites the campus community to a series of special events titled “Right to Read,” to honor and promote diversity of thought and expression found in books of all kinds.


Friday, April 26, 9am to 2:30pm

Right to Read: Readathon

Mann Library, 1st Floor

The readathon will feature excerpts from banned and challenged books, selected and read aloud by students, staff, and faculty members. A selection of banned books will be on hand for attendees to take home, for free. Stop by to listen anytime throughout the day!


Friday, April 26, 3 to 5:30pm

Right to Read: A Conversation and Reception

Books of all kinds stimulate the imagination, enrich the mind, and provide insights into our complex world. And yet, there is a growing list of books continually being challenged and banned in schools and libraries across the U.S. In addition, nowhere is censorship more restrictive than in prisons, where books and other educational resources are direly needed for building meaningful lives and preparing for re-entry into civic life. As PEN America stated in a recent report, “carceral censorship is the most pervasive form of censorship in the United States.”


Join us for this conversation about how schools, libraries, and prisons are affected by censorship and how these institutions are providing access to books as wellsprings of knowledge, experiences, and perspectives. Our guest speakers include:

  • Rob Scott, executive director of the Cornell Prison Education Program and an adjunct associate professor in the Department of Global Development, Cornell University

  • Leslie Tabor, director of Tompkins County Public Library

  • Elaine L. Westbrooks, Carl A. Kroch University Librarian, Cornell University

Can’t be there in person? Register for the livestream and enjoy the Right to Read Conversation in real-time!


A reception from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. in the Mann Library Gallery immediately follows this conversation.


Advancing the university’s “Freedom of Expression” theme year, these free public events are part of Cornell University Library “Right to Read” festivities throughout the day, which also includes a readathon.

The Nature-Study Idea by Liberty Hyde Bailey: Panel Discussion & Book Celebration

In The Nature-Study Idea, Liberty Hyde Bailey articulated the essence of a social movement, led by ordinary public-school teachers, that lifted education out of the classroom and placed it into firsthand contact with the natural world. The aim was simple but revolutionary: sympathy with nature to increase the joy of living and foster stewardship of the earth.


With this definitive edition, John Linstrom reintroduces The Nature-Study Idea as an environmental classic for our time. It provides historical context through a wealth of related writings, and introductory essays relate Bailey’s vision to current work in education and the intersection of climate change and culture. In this period of planetary turmoil, Bailey’s ambition to cultivate wonder (in adults as well as children) and lead readers back into the natural world is more important than ever.


In commemoration of Earth Week 2024, please join us for a panel discussion and celebration of this ground-breaking book with: 

  • John Linstrom, editor of The Nature-Study Idea and Related Writings, Series Editor of The Liberty Hyde Bailey Library, and Fellow in Climate Humanities and Social Justice at the Climate Museum
  • Alexa Maille, panelist – Interim NYS 4-H Youth Development Program Leader for the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research and Cornell Cooperative Extension
  • Christa Núñez, panelist – Founder and Director of The Learning Farm and of Khuba International, and Doctoral Student in Development Studies at Cornell University
  •  Scott Peters, panel moderator – Professor of Global Development at Cornell University and coauthor of In the Struggle: Scholars and the Fight against Industrial Agribusiness in California.

This event is co-sponsored by the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, the College of Human Ecology, the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research, Cornell Cooperative Extension, the Department of Global Development, the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment, the Cornell Botanic Gardens, Marvin Pritts, and Mann Library. 

2024 Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon

Join Cornell University Library and the Tompkins County Public Library for the 2024 Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon on Friday, April 19!

This year, our theme is Solidarity, with a focus on artists/art/art movements affected or displaced by violence. We’ll be meeting up in person on Friday, April 19, from 10am to 5pm in Olin Library room 703, and from 3pm to 6pm at the Tompkins County Public Library (Makerspace/Digital Lab). You can pitch in for just half an hour or the whole day, by writing an entry, adding a footnote, translating text, uploading images, or by looking up information for others.

Everyone is welcome—no matter your gender and regardless of experience with editing. Unfamiliar with Wikipedia and Wikidata? We’ll walk you through the editing process. If you already have collectives, groups, artists, writers, or performers in mind (whether cis, transgender, or non-binary), great! If you don’t, just pick from our list

Never edited Wikipedia or Wikidata before? See the following guide for resources to help you learn:

All are welcome. In addition to Wikipedia editing, have fun with other creative activities–zine-making, button-making, and coloring.  

Register for the edit-a-thon here!

*This event is co-sponsored by the Africana Studies and Research Center, American Studies Program, Department of Art, Feminist, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program, Gender Equity Resource Center, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Department of History of Art and Visual Studies, Department of Human Centered Design, Department of Literatures in English, Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program, Media Studies Program, Department of Romance Studies, and the Society for the Humanities.

Events celebrate Nabokov as butterfly scientist

Jose Beduya and Kathy Hovis, Cornell University Library, College of Arts and Sciences


A giant of 20th century literature known for such novels as Lolita and Pale Fire, Russian émigré and former Cornell professor Vladimir Nabokov was also a prodigious lepidopterist who collected and studied butterflies since the age of five.


“It is not improbable that had there been no revolution in Russia, I would have devoted myself entirely to lepidopterology and never written any novels at all,” he said in an interview for the Paris Review in 1967.


On March 14 and 15, a series of free public events at Mann Library will celebrate Nabokov’s lesser-known but impactful contributions to the science of collecting, classifying and understanding the prismatic world of butterflies.


March 14: Talk and Exhibit Opening Reception

When Nabokov published his papers in the 1940s about the evolution and migration of a group of butterfly species known as Polyommatus blues, he was met with skepticism by the scientific community. But, more than six decades later, his theories were confirmed by a study done by a group of butterfly experts using DNA sequencing techniques.


On March 14, 4-5 p.m., in room 160 of Mann Library, the leader of that study, Naomi Pierce, will deliver a lecture titled “The Evolution of Nabokov’s Polyommatus Blues.” A biology professor at Harvard University and the lepidoptera curator in its Museum of Comparative Zoology – a position Nabokov held in the 1940s – Pierce will discuss her research in connection with the writer’s trailblazing work.

Handdrawn image of an imaginary species of butterfly, from the dedication page of Look at the Harlequins
In first printings of his books, Vladimir Nabokov often inscribed dedications to his wife, Vera, and made drawings of butterflies. For the dedication page of Look at the Harlequins, he drew an imaginary species of butterfly, Arlequinus arlequinus. From the Division of Rare and Manuscripts Collection.

Through a collaboration between Cornell University Library and the Cornell University Insect Collection, Pierce’s lecture is part of the opening festivities for the exhibit “From Nabokov’s Net” in Mann Library’s main gallery. The exhibit will run through August, concurrent with a related book exhibit in the lobby titled “No Mere Curios: Finding Nabokov’s Lepidopterist Inspiration in the Rare Books of Entomology.”


“From Nabokov’s Net” showcases facsimiles of the writer’s original drawings, letters, photographs and other artifacts pertaining to butterflies that are kept in Cornell University Library’s Rare and Manuscript Collections. The exhibit also features specimens from the Cornell University Insect Collection, including several collected by Nabokov, who taught Russian literature at Cornell from 1948 to 1959.


The Karner blue butterfly – a novel species first described by the writer in 1943 – is featured prominently in the exhibit as a reminder of the importance of conserving natural habitats.


“When Nabokov went out and looked at these butterflies in an area outside of Albany, they were like blue snowflakes – just lots and lots of these beautiful, little blue butterflies all over,” said Jenny Leijonhufvud, Mann Library exhibit curator and outreach space coordinator, who co-curated the exhibit. “But then very quickly, in the decades after that, primarily due to habitat loss, they suddenly went from being very plentiful to being an endangered species.”

Photography of Naomi Pierce
Naomi Pierce, the Hessel Professor of Biology and curator of lepidoptera in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University.
Photography of specimens in original envelopes with dates and annotations.
Several butterfly specimens donated by Vladimir Nabokov to Cornell are kept in their original envelopes that have been dated and annotated by the writer. Photo by Emily Jernigan.

Several of Nabokov’s butterfly specimens are displayed in their original envelopes. “From his own handwritten notes on these little envelopes that contain all these butterflies, we know that these are the butterflies he was collecting while he was writing Lolita,” said Corrie Moreau, co-curator of the exhibit, director of the Cornell University Insect Collection, and professor of entomology and ecology and evolutionary biology in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.


“From Nabokov’s Net” uncovers an important facet of Nabokov, according to Moreau. “He could be quite whimsical in his fictional writings and even when he was writing about his own life, but he was strict and meticulous when it came to his science,” she said.

Vladimir Nabokov taught Russian literature at Cornell, where he had an office in Goldwin Smith Hall. From the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.

Moreau and Leijonhufvud both said they hope the exhibit will serve as a vehicle for showcasing the insect collection and the library as invaluable sources of knowledge for scholars and enthusiasts.

“Many people think museum collections are these dusty, outdated resources, but that couldn’t be further from the truth,” Moreau said, “We’re constantly using them to answer questions that the people who collected them a hundred years ago couldn’t have imagined.”


March 15: Panel Discussion, Video Screening, and Interactive Art-Making

Honoring Nabokov as a writer and scientist, the College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) is also organizing a series of events on March 15, 1-4 p.m., in Mann Library’s CALS Zone and atrium titled “Nabokov, Naturally,” part of A&S’s Arts Unplugged series and named after and inspired by a fall 2023 class taught by Anindita Banerjee, associate professor of comparative literature. In that class, students in the environment and sustainability major explored the writer’s life and work, and studied how human affairs and natural environments are entangled in Nabokov’s imagination.


“What is both unique and deeply inspiring about Nabokov’s legacy at Cornell are the intertwined ways in which his writings, drawings and photographs speak to scientists, readers and artists alike, bringing startlingly diverse fields and knowledges together as one community,” Banerjee said. “This was true for my students, in particular, who came to study Nabokov from a multitude of disciplines but with a shared passion for our planet with all its forms of life.”


During the event, participants can:

  • Take a close look at Nabokov’s butterfly collection;
  • Watch an eCornell video exploring the many ways that Nabokov’s legacy is alive today, both on campus and throughout the country;
  • Visit the new Mann Library exhibits;
  • Visit with students in the class to discover new information they discovered about Nabokov, the professor;
  • Talk with faculty, students and Nabokov experts from across the country during a panel discussion titled “The Butterfly Effect: Vladimir Nabokov as Scientist and Artist;” 2-3:30 p.m., in room 102 of Mann Library;
  • Stretch their creative wings by contributing to a giant multimedia art piece, or create their own butterfly with the help of entomologist/artist Annika Salzberg using both traditional and nontraditional materials.

“This 21st century engagement with Nabokov’s science-art practice transformed the legendary writer and ‘butterfly man,’ from a historical icon of Cornell to a model for living and learning today and for the future, one that that can care deeply for the world despite personal and communal tragedy and find beauty even amid unthinkable catastrophes,” Banerjee said.


This story also appeared in the Cornell Chronicle.

Sustainable Agriculture Student Film Series

Last semester, students in Professor Matt Ryan’s class Soil & Crop Sciences class, PLSCS 1900 “Sustainable Agriculture: Food, Farming, and the Future” created short documentaries addressing a topic of their choice, related to sustainable agriculture. Robin Gee and Ten van Winkle from Mann Library worked with the class by teaching workshops on videography skills – which included planning and storyboarding, producing video and audio, and using video editing software to create their final films, as well as the basics of copyright and fair use, and use of creative commons licenses. Students are encouraged to upload their films to Cornell eCommons, sharing a unique piece of scholarship with the Cornell community and beyond. 


At the end of the semester, the class gathered in Mann Library to enjoy popcorn and watch each other’s films. Each students’ film is judged by their classmates and instructors on quality, clarity of message, and creativity. Here are the top films from Fall 2023. The rest of the films from last semester, and many previous fall semesters, can be viewed on eCommons.  


Blooms of Doom: Unraveling the Mystery of Harmful Blue-Green Algae 

The Organic Revolution: Cultivating a Chemical-Free Future 

Oko Farms: Sustainable Agriculture in Practice 

Sustainable Agriculture at our Fingertips 

Dilmun Hill 

Sheer Sustainability 

Waves of Moo 

If you are interested in developing a similar multimedia project for your class, you can request assistance from our instruction team by filling out the instruction request form.

Spring 2024 Chats in the Stacks

We’re pleased to share the line up of our spring semester book talks! This semester includes a talk by the 2023 Dean’s Fellow Kathleen McCormick, doctoral student in Psychology. All book talks will be held in-person in Mann Library Room 160 and livestreamed, and will start at 4:30pm. You can find all recordings of our past Chats in the Stacks on our YouTube channel


Thursday, March 28, 4:30pm

Mann Library, Room 160 and livestreamed

Growing Pains: The History of Human Development and The Future of The Field

In a 2003 interview psychologist Eleanor Gibson reflected on her long and celebrated career at Cornell, and her first years on campus, stating “When I first went to Cornell, Cornell University did not hire women” (Szokolszky, 2003). But Dr. Gibson was wrong. Across campus women worked as researchers and professors in the College of Home Economics, conducting interdisciplinary work designed to improve the lives of individuals and communities around them. This work went on to transform the field of psychology and the methods and theoretical orientation of developmental science. Join us for Growing Pains: The History of Human Development and The Future of The Field by 2023 Dean’s Fellow Kathleen McCormick, doctoral student in Psychology. In this talk McCormick will explore the history of human development and home economics, and the ways the field shaped and was shaped by the political environment of the postwar period.


Thursday, April 11, 4:30pm

Mann Library, Room 160 and livestreamed

The Consciousness Revolutions: From Amoeba Awareness to Human Emancipation

How it is that we share some aspects of consciousness with bacteria? How can consciousness arise in artificial machines? And what does consciousness have to do with our survival in the face of the unfolding climate catastrophe? These, and many other fundamental questions about consciousness, are explored in Shimon Edelman’s new book The Consciousness Revolutions: From Amoeba Awareness to Human Emancipation (Springer Nature, 2023). Edelman, professor in the Department of Psychology, will discuss how consciousness is fundamentally a kind of computation and how through the understanding of human consciousness we can develop better insights into the nature of our lived experience, our problems, our social dynamics, and our shared future.  


Thursday, April 18, 4:30pm

Mann Library, Room 160 and livestreamed

Alien Earths: The New Science of Planet Hunting in the Cosmos

Join us in-person or virtually for a live book talk with Lisa Kaltenegger, associate professor in Astronomy and founding director of Cornell University’s Carl Sagan Institute, discussing her new book Alien Earths: The New Science of Planet Hunting in the Cosmos (Macmillan Publishers, 2024). This talk is co-hosted by Mann Library and the Math Library. 


CANCELLED Thursday, May 2, 4:30pm

Mann Library, Room 160 and livestreamed

Wildlife Disease and Health in Conservation

Most existing and emerging infectious diseases have their origin in animal populations. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic the need to understand the cause and impacts of wildlife diseases, as well as how to manage them, has only become increasingly salient. Join us for a live, hybrid book talk with Robin Radcliffe, associate professor of practice in Wildlife and Conservation Medicine in the Veterinary School, and David Jessup, former senior wildlife veterinarian of the California Department of Fish and Game and former executive manager of the Wildlife Disease Association, for a discussion of their new coedited volume Wildlife Disease and Health in Conservation (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2023).