Please be advised that UBC Library’s online catalogue system will undergo system maintenance today, October 31, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

During this time, the online catalogue is expected to remain operational but intermittent outages might occur.

We apologize for any inconvenience – thank you in advance for your understanding.

UBC Library has celebrated the transformation of its spaces, but when we went hunting it appeared several spirits have yet to release their hold on certain historical spots. In addition to staff reports of books spontaneously jumping off shelves, we learned about a chilling tale of a particular area in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre.

“At night in Room 203, you can hear the distinct sound of someone typing (near the front of the room), when no one else is in the office,” says Julie Mitchell, Managing Librarian of the Chapman Learning Commons. “When I still worked down there, I often found myself double checking to see if someone was there.”

The office space has been occupied by many different staff over the years, and even has a hidden fireplace behind the office walls. 

Several other myths with UBC Library connections have been well-publicized in Vancouver. In one, the spirit of a hitchhiker headed to the Library haunts University Boulevard. In another, an old woman in a white dress appears and then vanishes when approached.

The Library has abundant resources on the ghoulish, eerie and downright unnerving. Sarah Romkey, Archivist in Rare Books & Special Collections, shared an image described simply in the archives as “Haunted alley, Vancouver.” 

Haunted alley image

Haunted Alley, Vancouver

Library users are invited to explore books such as The Haunted: A Social History of Ghosts and Supernatural Stories Around British Columbia.

Enjoy being scared? Browse the Library’s selection of horror films: Halloween (1978); Halloween (2007); Halloween II; Nightmare on Elm Street; Saw; Saw II; Saw III; Saw IV; The Ring (US); The Ring Two; Ringu 2; The Texas Chainsaw Massacre; The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003); The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning; The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2; Cabin in the Woods; Amityville Horror (1979) and Amityville Horror (2005). 

As an antidote to the scary Halloween tales, Lorne Madgett, eResources & Access Library Specialist, offers an alternative perspective. The Ghost in the Machine, published in the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, provides a counterbalance to ghost stories from a scientific perspective. Learn more from UBC psychology professor Sheila Woody about why we enjoy being scared. 

With recent changes to the law, this panel discusses: general purpose and structure of tax treaties; domestic tax systems in Hong Kong and China; key features of the treaty; and opportunities for investment to and from Hong Kong and China.


Wei Cui, David Duff, Barry MacDonald (Partner, Tax Services, PwC), Lori Mathison (Managing Partner, Dentons)

Uthati Hilorein

Uthati Hilorein

UBC Library’s Asian Library is pleased to bring you a book display “Celebrating Hindi Literature” featuring Madhu Varshney and other popular Hindi poets. It is located on the Asian Library upper floor and the Asian Centre foyer from October 30 through November 12,  2013.

Madhu Varshney was born August 1945 in Sarai Tarin (U.P.) Dist., Moradabad, India.  She has post graduate degrees in Hindi Literature and in Economics.  In her undergraduate studies, she specialized in Literature – Hindi, English and Sanskrit. As an active member of the Indian community in Vancouver, Madhu was awarded British Columbia Community Achievement Award in 2008.

Madhu’s interest lies in teaching languages, folk songs and dances. She has compiled eight books on religion, spirituality and folk song like Maharishi Dayanand Kaa Gourav Gaan (2013) as well as published two collections of her poems Bhav-Tarang and Uthati Hilorein. The newly published Uthati Hilorein (Rising Waves) is a collection of modern Hindi poems about nature, spirituality and love.




Are you a graduate student at UBC? Consider attending or presenting at the next FIREtalk, “Learning Machines” – of particular interest to science students! Description from the Research Commons website:

When: Wednesday, November 27, 4-6 pm

Where: Koerner Library, Room 216

What are some cutting edge applications of computers and machines that help improve human life? What are the different approaches to the study and design of learning and intelligence? How can systems learn from data? What natural behaviors can be simulated by a machine? Can the brain be interpreted as a computer? How do our cultural perceptions of machines influence the way we interact with them? Where can speculative fiction and other works of the imagination take artificial intelligence?

More details at:


One professor. One 2nd year UBC medical student. Three associate professors. An assistant professor. One research scientist. A research team of three. One postdoctoral fellow. A PhD candidate. One Masters of Science student. They all came from varying UBC faculties, schools, centres including the renowned UBC Museum of Anthropology. But what do they have in common?

They are all previous winners and honourable mentions of UBC Library’s Innovative Dissemination of Research Award. This Award focuses on new and innovative ways of communicating and disseminating knowledge. Award applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on November 25, 2013

Note: All UBC faculty, staff and students are eligible.

Do you know a deserving UBC faculty, staff or student who should be nominated for the 2014 Innovative Dissemination of Research Award? Download the Award application form at:

Did You Know? 

The UBC Library Innovative Dissemination of Research Award was created in 2010 and includes a $2,000 cash prize and a framed certificate. Learn more about past Award winners and honourable mentions and/or how to submit your 2014 Award nomination at:

Above image courtesy of UBC Library

Webcast sponsored by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre and hosted by the Faculty of Law.

This talk revisits the issue of including lesbians and gay men as spouses for tax purposes. It highlights existing concerns about this policy, including the fact that it results in a privatization of economic security within relationships. The lecture also considers the impact of changes to the income tax system that permit spouses to split income and concludes that these changes exacerbate existing inequalities and reinforce heteronormativity by rewarding the traditional family in which one spouse is the breadwinner and the other remains at home. The recommendation is that all tax rules that take spousal status into account be abolished and we return to the individual as the unit of taxation.

About the Speaker:

Claire Young
Professor, UBC Faculty of Law

Prior to joining the Faculty of Law in 1992, Claire Young practiced law with the Alberta Attorney-General’s department for several years and taught law at the University of Western Ontario from 1984-1992.She is the co-author of two books and the author of numerous articles on tax law and policy. Her research interests include feminist legal theory and sexuality and the law. She was awarded the Killam prize for excellence in teaching in 1998 and 2002. In 1999 she held the Dunhill Madden Butler Visiting Chair in Women and the Law at the University of Sydney, Australia. She has consulted with the Department of Finance and several international organizations on tax policy issues and is currently a member of the Joint Commonwealth Secretariat and the International Development Research Centre (IRDC) research team (based in London, U.K.) working on The Gender Responsive Budget Project. In 2003 Professor Young was awarded the Therese Casgrain Fellowship in recognition of her research on women and economic issues.

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