Cinema & Theater


A. Purpose and Program Description

The Libraries seek to support research in a wide variety of arts, including theater (writing, acting, direction, criticism), film (writing, acting, direction, criticism), music (performance) and creative writing (theory and practice). It supports the needs of undergraduate and MA/MS students, as well as Ph.D. students in film and theater arts, the teaching faculty, post-docs, and researchers.

Changes in user population in the past five years include an unremitting growth, especially in the film and theater divisions, of the department, which now has an enrollment of over 500 students.

Areas of established specialization: The Butler General Library’s performing arts collection includes all aspects of the subject with the exception of the musical. Dramatic materials predominate. The texts of plays and critical materials concerning them are considered as forming part of our literature collections and are therefore collected accordingly. Complementing these basic materials and forming part of our performing arts collections proper are materials on the history of the theater which, again, are collected from all areas of the world. The cinema is also well-represented in our collections--its more practical aspects primarily in English, but with theoretical, historical and critical materials from all major movie-producing areas of the world. Files of the most important periodicals and monographic series in the field are maintained.

B. General Selection Guidelines (see classed analysis for detailed statement)

Overall, the Libraries’ existing collection and collecting goal for Cinema and Theater are at the research level while its current acquisitions commitment, based upon available resources, is at the study and teaching level.

C. Specific Delimitations

  1. Formats collected: We collect annuals, monographs, periodicals, reference tools and scholarly series extensively, CD-Roms and dissertations selectively. Audio-visual materials, maps, newspapers and textbooks are excluded.
  2. Imprint Dates Collected: We collect current publications extensively and 20th, 19th, and earlier centuries selectively.
  3. Chronological Focus: We collect film materials focusing on current and 20th century topics, and theatre materials focusing on 19th century and earlier topics extensively.
  4. Languages Collected: We collect English and Western European languages extensively; all other languages selectively.
  5. Place of Publication: We collect materials published in North America and Western Europe extensively, and all other areas of the world selectively.