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Library Easter Hours

Library and IT 
The Library will remain open 24/7 throughout the Easter break. The in-person Library Helpdesk and IT Helpdesk and online live chat service for Library and IT will be available Thursday 6, Friday 7 and Tuesday 11 April, from 1 to 6pm.
You also have continued access to an extensive digital library, including 228 databases, over 40,000 e-books and more than 12,000 online journals, available online, 24/7.

Finding the Evelyn Public Baths

The watermarked front cover of the Receipt from the British automated company in the ‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’

‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’ [1] 

Within Special Collections we have a variety of items, each with its own story to tell. One such item is the ‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book – Evelyn’, This book is full of interesting particulars that really give you a unique sense of the times. The book dates from the 25 July 1934 to the 29 August 1936 and the ‘Evelyn’ of the title refers to the Evelyn Street Baths. Each neatly printed page lists the services the public bath offered along with the cost for those services; in adjoining columns the superintendent has assiduously filled out the payments collected for the goods and services each day. I found myself going back and forth researching different elements of the book to try and gain more insight into the baths and its location, the books original home.  


‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’ [1] 

Armed only with the knowledge that the book had some relationship to Evelyn Street in Deptford, I first began by simply searching for the ‘Evelyn Street Baths’ in maps, public records, image databases and other archival repositories but, with no results. I also contacted different research and library establishments to try and find what information they held on the baths or the companies associated with them. 

I emailed the ‘Baths and Wash Houses Historical Archive’ [3], based in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire to enquire what exactly a Russian Vapour was, which was one of the services offered at the bath. They were incredibly helpful, providing images and reference books to check, such as the incredibly informative ‘Anges Campbell’s Report Public Baths and Wash-Houses in the United Kingdom 1918’ [5]. Through the insightful correspondence with the ‘Baths and Wash Houses Historical Archive[3], who explained about the different vapour treatments and hot boxes so thoroughly in their response, I was able to understand what a Russian vapour bath was.  

From what I understand a Russian Vapour was most likely a treatment that involved a steam bath or a steam box, sometimes referred to as simply Vapour Baths or the Vapour-Box by Robert Owen Allsop in ‘Public Baths and Wash-Houses’ [6], c.1894. Alfred W. S. Cross ‘Public Baths and Wash-Houses 1906’ [7] refers also to Russian Baths and Russian (Vapour) Baths. I also learnt that a Turkish bath or Turkish Vapour utilised dry heat whereas the Russian equivalent used wet steam. 

Sign used to advertise the Russian Vapour Baths in Brick Lane [2] 

It is said that the Russian baths were an important part of the culture of the East End Jewish community and that they ‘…were mostly used by men following work on a Friday evening, before going to the synagogue for prayers’ [2]. The baths in Brick Lane were known as ‘Schewzik’s’, named after their owner Benjamin Schewzik. I considered the influential position that John Evelyn had in Deptford as not only is the a street named is not the only thing that has shared his name in the area, Using this knowledge I explored areas away from Evelyn street focusing mainly on buildings which bore the Evelyn name in the area, but to no avail so the search continued. 


‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’ [1] 

A small sticker within the inside of the fabulously marbled front cover of the superintendent’s book tells us that the book itself was produced by Gaylard and Son, an accounts book manufacturer and printing contractor company based in New Cross. I explored their history in the hope that they may have saved their records, which could contain information on who purchased their books and where they were delivered to. Sadly, the business went into liquidation in 1994 and I could find no record, receipts or contact details of the company. So, while interesting this didn’t help me in my search for the bath. 

  Receipt from the British automated company in the ‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’

‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book - Evelyn’ [1] 

In some pages there are receipts from the British Automatic Company, who most likely provided, maintained, and collected the money from, a vending machine in the baths. Although a very well-known company who had contracts with railways there is not much readily available information on the business. The National Archive does have material from the British Automatic Company Limited however this only covers the period 1967 to 1970 [17].  The receipts in the superintendent’s book give the address of the baths as Evelyn Street Bath Deptford, but after further investigation I discovered that this was just how the bath was popularly referred to at the time.  

In my research a truly fascinating and insightful blog post was shared with me entitled ‘An Urban Sociology of Water’ by Les Back’. The post explores public washing and states that ‘ The social life of water and washing provides a way to understand the history of cities’ [4] There is mention of the Laurie Grove Bath in Deptford and  the Clyde Street Baths but, nothing of the Evelyn Street Bath. 

  [13] [14]

The first, black and white, image[13] was the only reference I could find indicating the presence of a bath house in the Deptford area, other than the more well-known Laurie Grove Baths. But being unable to find its location on a map or any source information for the image meant that the search continued. I later came across a second, colour, image [14] which is clearly a later image but from the architecture I could tell it was the same building in the first photograph. In the second image however the building is identified as being the Clyde Street Baths and Library, clearly eliminating it as the Evelyn Street Baths. 

After further discussion with colleagues, I decided to search street records of the dates the book covered, which led me to find out that Evelyn Street had been bombed in the 1940s. This helped narrow my search to pre- World War II. I traced the development of Evelyn Street to see how the road had changed over the years and where there was a large enough space for a building that could accommodate a public baths. I assumed a bath house would be larger than a residential building, like the other baths on the map. The first evidence indicating the location of the bathhouse on Evelyn Street came after some extensive exploration of maps between 1900 and 1970. I was unsure if the baths had been destroyed in the bombing in 1940 but through meticulously studying the Evelyn Public Baths daily return book, I was certain that the bath house was in existence and providing service between 1934 and 1936. I focused my search as close to those dates as possible though eventually I extended my search to later years as later maps provided better detail of the area. Finally, I found a bathhouse on the map series OS 1:1,250/1:2,500, 1944–1970, online, on the National Library of Scotland.  

A screenshot of the Georeferenced maps  from the National Library of Scotland (

 Georeferenced maps — National Library of Scotland ([11] 

Everything was coming together! The baths were not in fact directly on Evelyn Street but, were between Evelyn and Clyde Street and were attached to the Clyde Street library, and bore the sign Deptford Public Bath. The baths opened in 1928 and served the community until around 1988. [16] 

Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Deptford Borough [15] 

With this added information I was even able to find a 1961 ‘Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Deptford Borough’ [15] which refers to the Evelyn Baths as one of three in the area maintained by the council. This report refers to the bath by both its popular name and gives reference to its location.  

It is not clear what exactly happened to the original building but, the Lewisham Indochinese Community Centre now stands in the place of both the library and the bath. The construction of the Community Centre was completed in November 1998.[12] 

This started out as an investigation into where the ‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book’ had come from but, it took me on a wonderful journey of research and discovery, giving me the opportunity to think creatively and explore different tools and resources of information many of which I will use in the future.  


A version of this piece has also been published on the Bath and Wash Houses: Historical Archives webpage under the title ‘ Finding the ‘Evelyn Public Baths’ Deptford Public Baths 1928 – 1988’. [3]


  1. ‘Superintendents daily returns and receipt book – Evelyn’ uncatalogued special collections item  
  2. Jewish Museum London. 2021. Russian Vapour Baths <> [Accessed 07 February 2022]  
  3. Bath and Wash Houses: Historical Archives [Online] Available at <> [Accessed 07 February 2022] 
  4. Back, L. An Urban Sociology of Water [Online] CUCR: Centre for Urban and Community Research Available at: <> [Accessed 07 February 2022]  
  5. Campbell, A. 1918. Report on Public baths and wash-houses in the United Kingdom. Edinburgh; Constable.  
  6. Allsop, R., 1894. Public Baths and Wash-houses … Illustrated, etc. E. & F.N. Spon: London. 
  7. Cross, A., 1906. Public Baths and Wash Houses. [Place of publication not identified]: B.T. Batsford. 
  8. 1994. Gaylard & Son Limited Filing History  [Online] Available at <> [Accessed 10 February 2022]   
  9. Undated. Explore Horwood’s Plan – Romantic London. [Online] Available at <> [Accessed 17 February 2022]  
  10. National Library of Scotland (NLS.UK). c. 1900s. OS1: 1 Million – 1:10K, 1900s [Online] Available at < > [Accessed 17 February 2022]  
  11. National Library of Scotland (NLS.UK). 1944 – 1970. OS 1:1, 250/1:2,500, 1944 – 1970 [Online] Available at <> [Accessed 17 February 2022]  
  12. Lewisham Indochinese Community Centre. 2022. Our history [Online] Available at <> [Accessed 17 February 2022]  
  13. n.d. Clyde Street baths and library. [image] Available at: <> [Accessed 17 February 2022]. 
  14. n.d. Evelyn Public Baths Deptford [image] Available at: <> [Accessed 17 February 2022].   
  15. 1961. Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Deptford Borough [image] Available at:< > [Accessed 17 February 2022].  
  16. 2014. Edith’s Streets: London Local History [Online] Available at < 
  17. the British Automatic Company Limited material at The National Archive (Reference: T 193/350)  


by Shanique Thompson, Special Collection and Archives Assistant

Creative Computational Arts in the Library Space

‘Artists need an audience’, stated MA Computational Arts student Yasmin Jones, and Goldsmiths Library provided space and support to deliver.

We recently hosted an exhibition of MA/MFA Computational Arts student work and lighting talks by Goldsmiths lecturers and research students. 

Throughout the day, the ground floor of the library became a bustling creative space where students and staff could view the unique outputs of our students. Visitors engaged with various interactive pieces within the space, speaking with the creators about the creative process, thoughts, and mechanisms behind their creations. Guests could do anything from creating an eco-friendly city to tripping up Average Mario. 



Here’s what some people had to say about the event. 

What value did the library space deliver for this specific event, the students, and the lecturers? 

Yasmin Jones, MA Computational Arts: The library space was great for this event. It was sufficiently spacious, which allowed students to set up their project as desired to highlight their work. Using this space also meant that visitors could discover the pop-up by accident, which broadened the range of people who came to view our work. The fact we were positioned near the entrance was also useful for those attending who are external to the university. We were also big fans of the amount of power outlets! 

Alan Zucconi, Lecturer: The library has been an invaluable space to run events. It has always provided a spacious, yet cosy venue that feels very welcoming. It allows visitors to experience what Goldsmiths really is like, and for the students to see exhibitions and talks that they would have not normally attended. 

Jesse Wolpert, Lecturer: It was so wonderful to be able to finally hold an in-person event again and the library was the perfect space for it.  The students were so happy to be able to show off their projects, get feedback from visitors and be part of a live exhibition. 

What was the value to students showcasing their work? 

Yasmin Jones: This was an unfamiliar exhibition space to most students. This allowed us to learn to be adaptable when setting up a project and meant some had to innovate to find ways to mount their work. The tables we used were a good layout for this event and they were large enough even for the big pieces of work. This event was valuable to students who hadn’t had the opportunity to showcase their work to the public before and was great fun as a cohort as we hadn’t seen each other’s work installed yet. 

Jesse Wolpert: The students had only been able to show their work in class last term. Being in a public space gave them a whole new insight into how their work would be received. 

Artists need an audience, and the library was an excellent setting for students to set up their interactive installations. Students learnt about installing in a new environment, how to trouble-shoot problems on the fly, working together to curate the event and what to do when installations break! 




How did you find working with the library team? 

Yasmin Jones: The library team were great! They kept in contact with us before the event and communicated what would be possible in the space with regards to installing work. They were especially helpful during the setup, and we appreciated their effort to print posters letting people know that we would be using the space. 

Jesse Wolpert: The library team were super encouraging and helpful. We were given a lot of space to use and having the tables set up (with so many plugs!) was perfect for the computational work we do. It was amazing to have the large screen for the talks and the PA system already set up. 

Jesse, what value did you find the event provided to your fellow lecturers? 

We had 12 inspiring 6-minute talks from staff, students and ex-students. The speakers really enjoyed the opportunity to share their passions, their projects and their ideas. It was finally an occasion to celebrate each other’s work and learn more about our colleagues and students. 

What are some other highlights? 

Yasmin Jones: The ability to cordon off the space was really useful and helped with the flow of visitors and ticketing. 

Jesse Wolpert: We hope to do more events at the library as the space is so welcoming and encourages conversation and cross-pollination of ideas. 



 Caitlin Moore, Subject Librarian



New UKRI Open Access policy – what you need to know, how to comply and how we can help

The new UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Open Access policy comes into effect on 1 April 2022. The policy applies to:

  • peer-reviewed research articles submitted for publication from 1 April 2022
  • monographs, book chapters and edited collections published from 1 January 2024 (unless a contract has been signed between the author and the publisher before this date that prevents adherence to the policy).

If researchers receive funding from UKRI, they will need to comply with the UKRI Open Access requirements.

In this post, we will outline the key policy points our researchers at Goldsmiths need to know to ensure compliance and what the Online Research Collections (ORC) team in the Library are doing to help our researchers meet the new requirements.


The new UKRI policy builds on earlier Open Access initiatives in the UK that have aimed to accelerate the movement towards openness in academic research. The Finch report, published in 2012, paved the way for a significant change in the way academic journals are published. Following the report, Research Councils UK (RCUK) revised their Open Access policy to require journal articles based on research that they have funded, to be published as Open Access. The Wellcome Trust also developed an Open Access policy and the REF2021 Open Access policy followed in 2016. Open Access is now seen as an integral part of research in the UK with the UK Government emphasising the importance of effective open research practices in the UK Research and Development Roadmap published in 2020.

UKRI is a member of cOAlition S, an international consortium of research funders who launched a new Open Access publishing initiative called Plan S, which commenced on 1 January 2021. The aim of Plan S is to make immediate, full Open Access a reality and centres on ten key principles. These principles are the framework behind the new UKRI policy. More information on Plan S is available here.

In the wake of Plan S, Read & Publish agreements (also know as transitional agreements) have now emerged to support the transition to Open Access. These are agreements where the costs of publishing Open Access, through the payment of an Article Processing Charge (APC), is included as part of our Library subscription agreement with a publisher. These deals are seen as a way for publishers to transition their subscription journals to full Open Access and will play an important role in enabling our researchers to meet the new UKRI Open Access requirements.

Peer reviewed research articles from 1 April 2022

Peer reviewed research articles submitted for publication on or after 1 April 2022 which acknowledge funding from UKRI will need to be made Open Access from the date of publication. The policy applies to all peer reviewed research articles and conference papers published in proceedings with an International Standards Serial Number (ISSN).

There are two routes to compliance:

  • Route 1 (Gold Open Access): Making the Version of Record (published version) free and unrestricted to view and download on the publisher’s website from the date of publication
  • Route 2 (Green Open Access): Making the Author’s Accepted Manuscript (AAM) free and unrestricted to view and download on a repository such as Goldsmiths Research Online (GRO) from the date of publication

All articles must be made Open Access by the date of publication with no embargo period and be published with a CC BY licence unless UKRI has agreed, as an exception, to allow publication under the more restrictive CC BY-ND licence.

A Data Access Statement needs to be included in research articles covered by the policy, even where there is no associated data or where the data is inaccessible. The statement is intended to inform readers where the underlying research materials associated with a paper are available, and how the research materials can be accessed. The statement can include links to the dataset, where applicable and appropriate.

How do I meet the requirements for research articles?

UKRI expect that the significant majority of venues that publish UKRI funded research articles will be able to offer suitable Open Access options to UKRI-funded authors by April 2022 and they emphasise that researchers can publish in the journal or platform they consider most appropriate for their research, provided UKRI’s Open Access requirements are met.

If authors are using route 1 (Gold Open Access) to achieve compliance, there are several options for publication:

  • Publishing an article Open Access via a Read & Publish agreement. As of March 2022, Goldsmiths has agreements in place with SAGE, Springer, Taylor & Francis, Wiley and PLoS. Further information about our agreements is available here. JISC are continuing to negotiate further agreements with a range of publishes on behalf of UK academic libraries. They have recently secured a Read & Publish agreement with Elsevier, and we will communicate information about agreements available to authors published by Elsevier and other publishers when they become available.
  • Making use of the block grant we receive from UKRI to pay an Article Processing Charge (APC). UKRI funds for paying APCs can only be used if the journal meets the JISC requirements for transformative journals or transitional agreements (authors should email at the submission stage for confirmation that a journal requiring an APC payment is compliant with the policy). UKRI favours journals that are part of a transitional Open Access arrangement as they are seen as committing to transitioning from being a subscription journal to a fully Open Access one and therefore help advance the long-term aim of Plan S to shift the focus of academic publishing from the subscription model to making Open Access the default.

If authors are using route 2 (Green Open Access) to achieve compliance, they must include the following set statement provided by UKRI in any cover letter/note accompanying the submission:

‘For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising’

The statement will allow authors to post their AAM in a repository such as Goldsmiths Research Online (GRO) with a CC BY licence and no embargo regardless of the standard policy of the publisher. This element of the new UKRI policy is aligned with the Plan S ‘Rights Retention Strategy’ which intends to avoid the situation where authors sign exclusive agreements with publishers that inhibit immediate Open Access.

Most journals require an embargo on the Author’s Accepted Manuscript (AAM), and do not allow it to be made Open Access under a CC BY licence. It is therefore essential that authors using this route are clear with their journal at the point of submission what UKRI requires of them in terms of Open Access and that they check that their publication agreement is compatible with UKRI requirements.

Monographs, book chapters and edited collections from 1 January 2024

There is a new requirement for monographs, book chapters and edited collections published from 1 January 2024 (unless a contract has been signed between the author and the publisher before this date that prevents adherence to the policy) which acknowledge funding from UKRI to be made Open Access.

There are two routes to compliance:

  • Route 1: Making the Version of Record free to view and download on the publisher’s website within 12 months of publication
  • Route 2: Making the Author’s Accepted Manuscript (AAM) free to view and download on a repository such as Goldsmiths Research Online (GRO) within 12 months of publication. The policy allows the author and publisher to agree the appropriate version to self-archive on a repository.

Long form outputs must be published under a Creative Commons licence. UKRI has expressed a clear preference for a CC BY licence, but the more restrictive Creative Commons licences CC BY-NC and CC BY-ND are permitted if an exception is agreed with UKRI.

In 2022 UKRI will publish further guidance on exceptions around the use of third-party materials where permissions for reuse in an Open Access book cannot be obtained and exemptions where the only appropriate publisher is unable to offer an Open Access option that complies with the policy.

The policy does not apply to trade books (defined by UKRI as an academic monograph rooted in original scholarship that has a broad public audience), scholarly editions, exhibition catalogues, scholarly illustrated catalogues, textbooks, and all types of fictional works and creative writing. However, a trade book is considered to be in scope of the policy where it is the only output from a UKRI-funded research project.

How do I meet the requirements for monographs, book chapters and edited collections?

UKRI’s policy on long-form publications won’t be implemented until 1 January 2024, and much of the guidance on this part of the policy has yet to be released.

UKRI has committed to providing a dedicated fund of £3.5 million per year to support the long-form publications Open Access policy. The process for allocating the funds and the definition of eligible costs is being developed. The funding will be held at UKRI in a central pot, and it is anticipated that the funding will be available via an application process.

Although Open Access publication for monographs is less well developed than for research articles, support for fully Open Access books is on the rise with projects such as COPIM (Community-led Open Publication Infrastructures for Monographs) and Opening the Future working towards building a strong infrastructure for Open Access book publishing.

In anticipation of the new UKRI policy, JISC are working to develop new Open Access publishing models and initiatives for monographs (for example book processing charges and membership models that support Open Access). We will monitor these developments and communicate them to our researchers at Goldsmiths.

If I am funded by UKRI, what should I do?

Our previous messaging around Open Access compliance for REF2021 emphasised the importance of authors acting upon acceptance, but the new policy will require authors to consider whether a publishing platform offers compliant Open Access options prior to selecting venues for publication.

Given the complexity of the policy we are advising that authors email at the submission stage for confirmation that their chosen publishing venue is compliant, and we will offer advice to authors on the next steps they need to undertake.

JISC in collaboration with UKRI is currently developing an online tool that will enable researchers to identify whether a journal offers an Open Access option that complies with the policy. Once this resource is released the process of identifying eligible journals should be a lot easier for authors.

If you want advice on whether the journal or publisher you wish to submit your research to is compliant, please email

Is this the announcement of the next REF Open Access policy?

The UKRI policy is not the announcement of the next Research Excellence Framework (REF) Open Access policy. However, the policies are expected to align and UKRI have made it clear that compliance with their Open Access policy will also ensure compliance for the next REF.

Although the REF 2021 publication period closed on 31 December 2020, researchers should continue to comply with the REF 2021 Open Access policy by depositing the Author’s Accepted Manuscript (AAM) of journal articles and papers in conference proceedings with an ISSN to GRO within three months of acceptance.

How do I find out more about the policy?

The Online Research Collections (ORC) team in the Library have prepared guidance on the new policy which is available here.

If you have any questions about how the new policy affects your work, please email

Pieter Sonke, Open Access Adviser

Reading for pleasure – books to read in 2022

If you’re looking for some suggestions for what to read next look no further. Adil Rehman, our Reader Services Positive Action Graduate Trainee, has shared some of his favourite fiction reads for 2022.

William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair

The Victorian period is considered the golden age of English literature and is when the novel became the leading literary genre in English. A Victorian novel then, must be a part of your reading list for this year.

Thackeray’s Vanity Fair is recognised as a classic of English literature. The novel follows the lives of two contrasting women – Becky Sharp and Amelia Sedley.

Becky craves wealth and a position in society and is willing to manipulate everyone in her journey to success, while Amelia’s gentleheartedness attracts the devotion of William Dobbin.

Through his witty satire, Thackeray exposes the gluttony, snobbery and vanity of English society, and leaves the readers with timeless moral lessons.

Find it in our library here.


Agatha Christie, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd

If you are in search of a detective story to read this year, then Agatha Christie’s The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is an excellent choice.

Though largely controversial at its time of publication for ‘breaking the rules’ of detective stories, the novel has gone on to become one of the most celebrated detective novels of all time. It has seen multiple adaptations in both radio and film, and in 2013, the British Crime Writers’ Association voted it the best crime novel ever. [1]

Join detective Hercule Poirot as he comes out of retirement to solve who murdered his friend Roger Ackroyd.

Find it in our library here.


Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man

Invisible Man follows the journey of an unnamed African American man as he learns how to navigate through a world that renders him ‘invisible’ as ‘people refuse to see’ him.

The book deals with many issues that African Americans, including the author, faced at the time, and in particular, how racism acted as an obstacle to individual identity.

Readers may see its continued relevance today as African Americans continue to deal with issues surrounding race. The Harlem race riot and instances of police oppression in the book, for example, bring to mind recent events in America.

Invisible Man won the U.S. National Book Award for Fiction in 1953, making Ralph Ellison the first African American to win the award. [2]

Find it in our library here.



Percival Everett, Erasure

In the words of Robert J. Butler, Erasure ‘signifies’ on Invisible Man. That is, Erasure makes meaningful references to Invisible Man (and other ‘African American’ literature) ‘as a way of def

ining how contemporary America has developed new ways of rendering black people “invisible” by “erasing” their individuality and encasing them in empty social roles’, making it the obvious next read on your list. [3]

The plot surrounds writer Thelonious “Monk” Ellison, whose manuscripts are continually rejected by publishers because they are ‘not black enough’. Monk is enraged by the success of Juanita Mae Jenkins, as her bestseller We’s Lives in Da Ghettos, reduces black Americans to negative stereotypes. Monk writes My Pafology as a satirical response to Jenkins’s novel (which is included in its entirety within Erasure), but to his despair, it wins ‘The Book Award’.

 Find it in our library here.

Robin Robertson, The Long Take

The Goldsmiths Prize was established in 2013 ‘to reward fiction that breaks the mould or extends the possibilities of the novel form’. Robin Robertson’s The Long Take won The Goldsmiths Prize in 2018 for achieving exactly this. [4]

A noir narrative written with the intensity and power of poetry, The Long Take is one of the most remarkable and unclassifiable books of recent years.

Walker, a D-Day veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder, cannot return home to rural Nova Scotia, so looks instead to the city for freedom, anonymity and repair. We follow Walker through a sequence of poems as he moves through New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco and we witness a crucial period of fracture in American history, one that also allowed film noir to flourish. [5]

Find it in our library here.

Lucy Ellmann, Ducks, Newburyport

Lucy Ellman’s Ducks, Newburyport won The Goldsmiths Prize in 2019.

Erica Wagner, Chair of the Judges, described is as ‘that rare thing: a book which, not long after its publication, one can unhesitatingly call a masterpiece. In her gripping and hypnotic book, Ellmann remakes the novel and expands the reader’s idea of what is possible with the form’. [6]

The novel is written in the stream of consciousness narrative style and consists of a single sentence that runs over 1000 pages.

An Ohio housewife worries about her children, her dead parents and weapons of mass destruction. An indictment of America’s barbarity and a lament for the way we are sleepwalking into environmental disaster, Ducks, Newburyport is a revolution in the novel. [7]

Find it in our library here.







[3] Butler, Robert J., ‘Percival Everett’s Signifying on Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man in erasure’, Canadian Review of Comparative Literature, 45 (2018), 141-152







Return of the Research Café


The Library led Research Cafes are up and running again for 2022.

What is a research café?

Research Cafes are an opportunity for researchers to come together with an audience made up of students, staff and the general public to give a 10-minute presentation about their current or recent research in a relaxed, friendly environment. The presentations are then followed by a short Q&A session. Occasionally the Research Cafes have a particular theme, however, generally they are non-specific and open to research on any topic. As an example of the breadth of coverage, topics presented last year included; practice research, post emancipation racial politics and geopolitics in the British colony of Jamaica, and lesbian identities at The National Fat Women’s Conference of 1989.


Why should I get involved?

Research Cafes provide many benefits for both the speaker, who has an opportunity to engage with the public and promote their research, and the audience, who have the chance to hear first-hand what it’s really like to undertake research, find out any problems that were encountered and how they were overcome, and ask any other questions about the research that they may have.

Our research cafes are completely inter-disciplinary and as such facilitate a unique bringing together of people from across Goldsmiths and beyond, enabling cross fertilisation of ideas, sharing of best practice and the establishment of new connections.


Where do they take place?

Formerly delivered in the social area on the ground floor of the library (hence the name), following the pandemic we have now moved our Research Cafes online, affording the opportunity to attend to an even greater number of people. All Research Cafes are held 12-1pm on a Wednesday afternoon, so you can pop along on your lunch break.


When is the next cafe?

Our next event takes place on Wednesday 2nd February 12-1pm and is a Covid special highlighting the work of Dr Claudia Bernard, Professor of Social Work and Head of Postgraduate Research in the Department of Social, Therapeutic and Community Studies, alongside colleagues; Dr Anita Sharma and Dr Teresa Peres. They will speak about their research for Co-POWeR (Consortium on Practices of Well-being and Resilience in black, Asian and minority ethnic families and communities) which focuses on the ways in which discrimination is worsening the impact of Covid-19 on black, Asian and minority ethnic people in the UK. A full description of the research can be found here.

Subsequent cafes scheduled include:

16th February, 12pm-1pm – LGBT special

30th March, 12pm-1pm – Non themed, all topics welcome


How do I sign up?

To sign up as an attendee for any of our upcoming Research Cafes visit our Eventbrite page:

All Research Cafes will take place on Microsoft Teams. You will receive an email containing the Teams link and instructions for joining on the day of the event.

To participate in the research cafes as a speaker please email Elizabeth Williams, Academic Support Team Manager: E.Williams( or Mark Preston, Subject Librarian: M.Preston(

We look forward to welcoming you at one of our events!

The Research Café team





How Race Today Evolved into the Forefront Radical, Anti-Racist Publication in 1970s Britain

Race Today, January 1974

From 1974-1988, Race Today, a journal of the Race Today Collective, was an integral component of the struggle for racial justice in Britain. Race Today was pioneering in terms of its reports and analysis of struggles by Black and Asian workers in the UK against police and institutional racism. The Collective’s work was not just journalistic, as it was also a campaigning organisation, which supported grass-roots movements that aimed to advance the struggle for Black Power, the fight for Women’s Liberation and anti-colonial campaigns to free the countries which came to be known as the ‘Third World.’ Race Today centers race, class, and sex at the core of its analysis of events in Britain and across the world. The magazine’s global reach is represented by its writers. Contributors include CLR James who lived above the journal’s offices in Brixton; Darcus Howe and Leila Hassan, the magazine’s editors; and writers, activists, and intellectuals such as Mala Sen, Barbara Beese, Akua Rugg, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Selma James, Farrukh Dhondy, John La Rose, and Walter Rodney.

With ongoing struggle against police brutality, institutional racism and racial bias, the fight for racial justice has never been more urgent. It took a momentous turn with the Black Lives Matter Movement and now more than ever, is it important to bring to light the insightful publications, anti-racist campaigns and fearless journalism reflected in the Race Today Journals. Between 1973 to 1988, the Race Today journal and its writers ferociously fought for issues like police accountability, workers justice, trade unionism etc, challenged racist organisations and linked experiences of Black communities in Britain to struggles of other communities.

Race Today, October 1974

However, Race Today did not begin as a radical, anti-racist publication when it was founded in 1958 by the Institute of Race Relations. It was scholarly and conservative in nature. In 1972, the editorial committee and Race Today Staff protested the increasingly academic and politically neutral scope of the magazine. An internal coup, led by Ambalavaner Sivandandan, allowed the editorial community to take over control from the IRR management to adopt a more radical direction. Darcus Howe then embodied this new approach. An experienced journalist in campaigning media, he previously worked for Black Panther party’s Freedom News and was also the editor of briefly run Black Dimension Journal. It was Howe’s extensive media experience, immense political knowledge of Black liberation struggles and colonial legacies that made him an appropriate leader to execute this radical vision. He redirected and reconstructed the magazine’s original academic origins to fit the front lines of racial justice and politics.

Howe was deeply inspired by this political mentor and Race Today contributor CLR James, a Trinidadian historian and socialist, who advocated for unity between white working class and non-white communities. Howe became conscious of making the journal a platform for grassroots movements. As a result, in his first editorial, he set out to commit to centering the voices of Black and working-class communities instead of speaking for them himself. He further made it known that Race Today would open its pages to independent grass roots self-activity with a goal of furthering its development. As a final move after the split from IRR, Howe moved the journal’s offices from an institutional building in King’s Cross to a space in Brixton, at the heart of the Black community.

Race Today, August 1974

Race Today defined the power of community and togetherness after shifting away from the IRR. It was devoted to the community in many forms but especially culture. The Collective understood that culture and unity was a vital part of liberation movements. For this reason, the journal used its platform and voice to celebrate Black art, literature, music and sports during its tenure. It displayed works from major Black icons, such as Toni Morrison, Grace Nichols and James Baldwin on expression and Black identity. The Collective also organised cultural events such as book fairs and supported local musicians to perform at events like the Notting Hill Carnival while defending the Carnival’s cultural significance. For Black & Asian people, their community and unity became one of the only forms of support due to the racism and xenophobia they faced at places of work, schools, and neighbourhoods. Race Today captured this essence of community while fearlessly fighting against discrimination which is something we should mirror in current times.

The international coverage in the journal helped bring home the idea that liberation and equity are global needs. Issues covered situations beyond borders and showed the solidarity extended by the Collection to the exploitation and dehumanisation of communities and effects of colonialism. Thus, alongside accounts of Black people in Britain, there were extensive discussions of the struggles of workers and citizens in the Global South and showed support to Asian communities too.

Though Race Today was widely read influential in the 1970s and 80s, the magazine is now hard to access with only a few archives around the country containing the complete publication. Visit Special Collections and Archives to access 18 issues of the Race Today publications, located in the Vic Siedler Collection.

Race Today, August 1972

Adya Jalan, Decolonising Projects 2021



Field, Paul, Bunce, Robin, Hassan, Leila, & Peacock, Margaret. (2019). Here to Stay, Here to Fight. London: Pluto Press.

The Race Today Collective: Why Press and Media are Vital in the Fight for Racial Equity

Black Britannia: The Race Today Collective Demonstrated the Radical Potential of Journalism




And Action….. Redressing BAME representation in academic libraries


It may come as a surprise to you that the UK library workforce identifies as 96.7% White*- this is compared to a UK population that identifies as 88% White.

It’s only in the last 2 years that SCONUL (Society of College, National and University Libraries) and CILIP (Chartered Institute for Librarians and Information Professionals), which are the library and information sector’s leading representative bodies in the UK, have worked with staff to establish networks that platform BAME voices and experiences – SCONUL’s BAME Staff Forum and CILIP’s BAME Network, both of which have Allies networks.

As with other areas across HE, libraries are hugely underrepresented by people from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic backgrounds. This is true throughout the workforce but is most startling at the very top, with only 3 BAME library directors.  One of those 3 is Goldsmiths’ Library Director, Marilyn Clarke.

Recognising the enormous value, advantage, and creativity that diverse voices and experiences bring to all aspects of what we do, faced with this reality we had no choice but to become activists. So, at Goldsmiths library, as part of our Liberate our Library* initiative and EDI commitments we are being proactive and intentionally taking positive action to change our staff profile and contribute to a more diverse recruitment pipeline within the sector. One way that we are doing this is through our positive action BAME Graduate Traineeship. The role has been a long time coming! Finances and a global pandemic slowed us up, but we’re thrilled that we launched the inaugural traineeship this year.

The intention of the role is to have an annual opportunity for a BAME Graduate who has not necessarily had any experience but is interested in exploring a career in the Library and Information sector to do so. We have designed the role, so it allows the successful candidate the opportunity to experience library work across all its core functions. The idea being that they come away with broad ranging experience, the skills and knowledge necessary and hopefully, a desire to build a career in libraries.

We’re determined to make this the best grounding experience in library work that we can so, acknowledging that our BAME Graduate is in a unique role and is moving around teams, we’ve established a ‘Buddy’ scheme so that they can share their experiences, have support and a network to help them settle in. Gloria Ojosipe, our Library Administration Coordinator, is championing this.  She has a wealth of professional, Goldsmiths, and life experience, and is also an academic mentor.

We decided to offer our first traineeship to a Goldsmiths Graduate and are pleased to introduce Adil Rehman, who began working with us in September.

Adil has just finished studying English and History at Goldsmiths. He has always been interested in the humanities and had considered becoming an English teacher after his degree as he wants to experience living in different countries and thought teaching would be a good fit.

While studying Adil spent a lot of time in the Library and enjoyed being in the environment. When he was picking up some books with a friend in 2020 they had a conversation about how cool it would be to work in a library, but he didn’t think any more of it until he got a job alert from CareerSpace advertising the role and thought he’d go for it!

He says he had no particular expectations of what it was like to work in a library before starting, but has been surprised at how many staff there are and how many different things we do. As a student he used Reading lists and online   resources but had never really thought about how they get created and had only really considered books and the helpdesk as library work. Now that he has started. like the rest of us, his family and friends have been asking him if he spends all day reading books (we’d love to, but sadly we don’t).

Adil has been enjoying moving around the different teams, getting to know people and learning about different aspects of library work. He is looking forward to getting to know more about Special Collections, his appetite having been wetted after being shown the works of Charles Dickens*, which were published in monthly issues after Dickens’ death and sold on newsstands.

It’s early days for Adil and you will be hearing lots more from him throughout the year – but for now, welcome Adil – we’re delighted you’ve joined our team.

We’re incredibly excited about this role. We’re excited for Adil’s journey and for the opportunity to work with and learn from him. We’re also pleased that we’ve been able to create this as an annual BAME traineeship. This will allow us as a library to be more representative of the communities we serve and show our BAME students that there is a place for them in academic libraries, if they want it, which is incredibly important in student engagement, interaction, retention, and attainment.


Marilyn Clarke, Nuala McLaren & Adil Rehman

With thanks to Carl Dunford-Gent, Gloria Ojosipe, Careers, HR, and the Library Team


* – ‘A Study of the UK Information workforce / CILIP (Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals) and ARA (Archives and Records Association) commissioned report.

* – decolonising and diversifying collections and the profession.


The works of Charles Dickens.

SEAL Programme, South East Action Learning

Hi everyone, I am Gloria the Library Administration Coordinator. This is my 23rd year working in the library. I was recommended by Marilyn Clarke, Director of Library Services, to apply for the 6-months, 1-day a month, SEAL programme (South East Action Learning), which I successfully gained admission to. I have chosen to share this post with you all because it’s an excellent opportunity for you, if you wish to learn more about Action Learning.

What is Action Learning

  • Action Learning is an approach to the development of people in organisations which takes the task as the vehicle for learning.
  • It is based on the principle that there is no learning without action and no clear understanding and careful decision making without learning.
  • It is also about promoting Courageous choice – helping people to take action that is meaningful for them, rather than directing people into a course of action that you think you would take in their shoes.

Coaching and action learning

  • This is a learned skill like any other – we are given the techniques and principles, but it’s up to us to apply it and practice it regularly (like learning to drive, teaching, writing, etc.).
  • It will feel awkward, uncomfortable and stressful at times, and you will not always do it perfectly, especially at first. But, the more you approach the challenge, the easier it becomes – especially under high pressure situations.

What are the benefits:

  • Learning a more ‘disciplined’ way of working.
  • Learning to network.
  • Learning to relate to, and communicate with others more effectively.
  • Gaining increased self-confidence.
  • Gaining increased awareness.

The method has three main components:

  • People who accept responsibility for taking action on a particular issue; problem, or the task that people set themselves;
  • A set of six or so colleagues who support and challenge each other to make progress on problems.
  • Action Learning implies both self-development and organisation development.


It was a wonderful opportunity and experience to meet such an inspiring, warm and diverse group of women to spend time with. What made our group of women special: communication, honesty and vulnerability, which allowed the group to trust, to grow and for bonds to strengthen.

The sessions were really interesting, hearing other members of staff’s reflections, and those from other groups. I am grateful for the positive learning environment, the SEAL programme provided. I had so much fun learning with the group, and our very patient and helpful facilitator Juliet Flynn. Thanks to all our participants.

I recommend the SEAL programme because there is a world of wealth to be gained.

For those of you in academic roles you might be interested in this recently published book: Coaching and Mentoring for Academic Development (2021), Guccione & Hutchinson, a good read for those wanting to find out more about coaching and mentoring specifically in academic contexts for people in various roles. It includes helpful coaching questions.

I have shared some slides which will enable you to understand the process of the SEAL programme.

2021: Year of REF (and some other things), or What’s an Assessment For?



REF 2021 was completed and submitted earlier this year, in March 2021. The assessment by the REF panels is underway now, with results expected to be announced in Spring 2022.  In the following Goldsmiths Library blog post, Fred Flagg, one of 3 REF Project Officers at Goldsmiths supporting REF 2021, reflects on this colossal undertaking and on the wider picture of rankings and assessments.

For the first Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), the named year (2014) was the year of the assessment and release of the results. The work of submission was done by the end of 2013 with the results released in December 2014 (with a submission date in late November 2013 and all of the submitted work had to be published before 2014).  For the second REF, 2021 will be both the year of submission and most of the assessment. The REF 2021 results are expected in approximately April 2022.  The deadline was postponed four months until March 31st and the Goldsmiths, University of London submission to REF 2021 was submitted on March 25th (announced and celebrated in a 9th April Goldsmiths all-staff email from David Oswell, Pro-Warden for Research, Enterprise & Knowledge Exchange and Jane Boggan, Research Excellence Manager; email summarised at (Please note that this link is to an internal Goldsmiths intranet site which is not publicly available).

Many other things were on our minds over 2020 and 2021, and the global SARS-COV2/COVID-19 pandemic put an exercise like the Research Excellence Framework in a harsher light than before.  How do you weigh and prioritise an exercise to measure national research during a global pandemic? There were debates within the academic community throughout 2020 (example of a case for a longer postponement at LSE Impact blog here, and against further postponement at Wonkhe here).  The delay of four months was the biggest mitigation made by Research England, but there were others, mostly allowing for delays caused by the pandemic (REF links here and here).

National assessments like the REF have been accumulating somewhat since the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) was launched as part of the Office for Students in 2015/2016.  The first Knowledge Exchange Framework was completed and published to little fanfare on 1st March 2021 (see dashboard of results here).  Reviews of both the TEF and National Student Survey have already been released this year (with the Subject component of TEF definitively removed, and the NSS largely unchanged for now.  Science minister Amanda Solloway discussed the REF in an October 2020 speech, stating that the reforms following 2016 Stern Review didn’t go far enough and that Research England and its counterparts in Northern Ireland, Scotland & Wales will be starting “a plan for reforming the REF after the current exercise is complete.”

Along with these completed (and anticipated) national reviews, it is worth reflecting on the immense local undertaking REF 2021 has been at Goldsmiths.  Colleagues across all academic departments, in the Library and across Goldsmiths have completed a large amount of difficult work, in circumstances far more difficult than usual.  In the Library Online Research Collections team, as the team that looks after the open-access institutional repository Goldsmiths Research Online, we are responsible for the primary source of data on publications by Goldsmiths researchers.  We are currently reflecting on the work behind Goldsmiths’ REF 2021 with the goal of making the next submission as smooth as possible, whenever it rolls around.

Whatever happens with the national reviews and whatever we turn up in our local reflections, the open-access component of the next REF will follow the REF 2021 open access policy for the time being: any research published in a publication with an ISSN will be required to be made open-access within three months of the date of acceptance for publication (following publisher embargo periods as required).  The REF open-access policy is linked to UKRI’s open-access policy, so it is expected to change after UKRI releases the new version (expected ca. Summer 2021).  The UKRI OA policy consultation gives Research England and UKRI a deadline of “no later than six months after the UKRI policy is announced” for the release of the new REF policy.  As the UKRI policy will include a stronger open-access mandate, and is phasing in a new requirement for open-access for books and monographs, it is expected that the new REF policy will also include books and monographs eventually, but not expanding to include them until at least 2024.  This would be consistent with the current relationship between the RCUK (now UKRI) OA policy and the REF OA policy, with more strict open-access requirements for work funded by UKRI than for work submitted to the REF.

For anyone who is curious about a different format of research assessment, the Hidden REF is an alternative inspired by the REF that has recently closed (on 14th May) that plans to release its results in June.  For another thought-provoking take on metrics and assessment, Lizzie Gadd’s recent post at the LSE Impact blog extends the challenge of re-thinking research assessments even further, to considering the value and ethics of university rankings, with some constructive ideas for change included.  National assessments and rankings are not going away, and this observer suspects they are not likely to change drastically anytime soon either.  With all of the work, resources and employment invested in assessment, accreditation processes and rankings, it is still worth asking serious questions about them.

Fred Flagg