Humanities E-Book
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HEB Spotlight on Civil Rights

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr.—a leader and powerful figure of the Civil Rights movement and in American History. Humanities E-Book sees MLK Day as much more than just an occasion to honor the man but also to honor the causes and ideas he fought for. Acknowledging the dark, terrible aspects of our history critical, as in learning about some this movement’s victories in spite of great obstacles. We celebrate the bravery of this man and of the countless people who were a part of this movement, while admiting that there are still battles to be fought, that this country still has a ways to go in achieving justice and equality.

This MLK Day, deepen your understanding of this period of recent history. From the history of the Civil Rights movement and its leaders, to the politics of mass incarceration, to reproductive rights for women of color, the HEB collection spans a wide range of civil rights topics across disciplines. Our collection hosts over 400 scholarly titles covering the Civil Rights movement. Some of the most popular titles are featured below; you can also peruse a longer list of titles here or browse our Pinterest boards on similar topics, such as Race in America and African Studies.

Ways HEB Can Help Your Library Thrive in 2018

Though we’re not huge fans of listicles here at HEB, we just couldn’t resist showing all the ways HEB can help your library thrive, and not just survive, in 2018. HEB thrives on helping libraries, faculty, students, and individual users thrive; so let us count you the ways.

  1. Unlimited, simultaneous multi-user access.
  2. Money saved by not buying same books in print – the average price of humanities books is $70 and even if you only use 200 titles from the HEB collection, you will save your library over $10,000.
  3. Money saved by not buying individual ebooks – the average price of academic ebooks is $127. Even more money saved.
  4. Fulcrum – HEB is migrating to this innovative new platform and converting to ePUB.
  5. Size of the collection – we have 5,153 titles in 42 subject areas, and we’re continually growing.
  6. Curated collection – our titles are recommended and approved by scholars in their respective fields.
  7. Expanding subject areas – Military History, Political Science, Communications, Indigenous Peoples, and more.
  8. Free, downloadable MARC records and usage statistics.
  9. Accessibility Standards – we offer full text versions that work with standard text-to-voice readers, conforming to W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, Conformance Level A.
  10. AltMetrics on select titles.
  11. Chapter Downloads.
  12. Fully searchable – in-depth, full-text, rather than extract, search results.
  13. Citation and annotation tools, such as the tool.
  14. Customer Service – our small but mighty team works to make sure you never get a ticket number if you have issues accessing the collection or need to request a title list.
  15. Try before you buy – we offer 60-day free trial subscriptions.
  16. 125 leading publishers as partners, including the university presses of Oxford, Harvard, University of California, and Cambridge.
  17. Award winning titles – 25%  (over 1,000 titles) of our collection have won awards. See the titles that have won Pulitzers.
  18. Special series – developed in collaboration with publishers and learned societies.

So there you have it: 18 reasons your library needs HEB to help it thrive in 2018.

HEB in 2018: What to Look For

Like many people, Humanities E-Book is over 2017 and ready for 2018. 2017 brought many exciting developments to HEB, such as chapter downloads, the Humanities Open Book project wrapping up, and new titles, but all of this is just a teaser for what is coming in 2018.

2018 New Titles

HEB is under way developing our 2018 new title list. Areas in our collection we are interested in expanding include Islamic Studies (a subject area broken out from the more general “Middle Eastern Studies” designation used before 2017), Military Studies (including history, security, and conflict studies), Women’s Studies, Native Peoples of the Americas, Political Science, and Communication Studies. If you have a recommendation for a title or a subject area you would like to see more titles in, fill out our recommendation form or email HEB’s Chris Plattsmier.

A lot of answers our respondents listed in our 2017 collection development survey indicated the impact of the current socio-political climate in America, which is not surprising, but it will be interesting to see in our 2018 collection development survey if these trends continue. In fairness, it does not seem like the socio-political climate is going to change anytime soon. HEB is committed to continually improve its collection to meet the academic and scholarly needs of faculty, students, and librarians; part of this includes staying up-to-date on the subject areas and topic relevant in academia and the public arena.


Speaking of staying up-to-date, HEB’s new platform, Fulcrum, is approaching the final stages of development. The EPUB reader platform will go live August 2018 and we couldn’t be more excited. Fulcrum will allow users to have a more seamless experience with features such as reflowable text, annotation tools, and integration of enhanced media. HEB will be migrating its entire collection to this new platform, in addition to converting its titles to the EPUB format.

One of the core values of HEB is innovation; through our partnership with University of Michigan, we are looking forward to building upon that value and providing readers with better accessibility to and user experience with HEB’s outstanding collection.

Where We’ll Be

PSP 2018 Annual Conference, Feb 7-9, Washington, D.C.

ALA Midwinter, Feb 9-13, Denver, CO.

ARLIS/NA Annual Conference, Feb 25-Mar 1, New York, NY

ER&L Annual Conference, Mar 4-7, Austin, TX

NFAIS Humanities Roundtable, Mar 11, Washington D.C.

Humanities Advocacy Day, Mar 13, Washington D.C.

ATLA Annual Conference, Jun 13-16, Indianapolis, IN

ALA Annual Conference, Jun 21-26 New Orleans, LA

Charleston Library Conference, Nov 5-10, Charleston, S.C.

Crucial Dates

April  2018,  Humanities Open Book Titles Live on Fulcrum

August 2018, HEB Collection Launched in Fulcrum

Repost: Fulcrum Year End Update – 2017 Edition

This article originally appeared on and is being reposted here with permission from the author. For more updates on HEB’s move to the Fulcrum platform in 2018,  sign up for HEB’s monthly newsletter.

Fulcrum Year End Update – 2017 Edition

By Melissa Baker Young

The end of the year is upon us and before we let 2017 slip away into the history books, we wanted to highlight some of the major work done on Fulcrum this year and take a quick peek at what awaits us in 2018.

2017 definitely found the Fulcrum team busy! We launched all of the remaining non-Michigan titles that were part of our “Building a Hosted Platform for Managing Monographic Source Materials” grant, generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Titles from Indiana University Press and Penn State University Pressjoined those from Northwestern University Press and the University of Minnesota Press, which launched in 2016, on Fulcrum. Our press colleagues’ efforts in collecting assets and metadata for Fulcrum, as well as providing user requirements and feedback throughout development, was invaluable.

Once we established a stable space for supplemental materials on Fulcrum, we were able to turn our attention to the development of our EPUB reader. In close collaboration with HathiTrust, we built a truly dynamic, accessible, and usable e-reader. We offer easy navigation throughout the EPUB, through next/previous buttons, helpful links into the content from the Table of Contents, as well as a progress indicator, which includes a location number and percentage, giving the reader a sense of the size of the book and their location within it. Readers can search the EPUB, they can select their font size and display method (page-by-page or scroll), and obtain a citation for the work using MLA, APA, and Chicago styles. And we continue to focus on accessibility, performing accessibility checks and tests and making numerous adjustments to ensure WCAG 2.0 AA compliance.

We’re happy to announce that our EPUB reader launched on December 7th! New York University Press was instrumental in helping us with this task, as they graciously allowed us to use the EPUB file for their title Show Sold Separately by Jonathan Gray, as our inaugural e-reader title.

This year also found the Fulcrum team working hard to make a seamless transition from the Samvera (formerly Hydra) Curation Concerns gem to the new Hyrax application. The Fulcrum team took on a more active role in the Samvera community by being one of the first to thoroughly test and migrate to the initial and subsequent release of Hyrax. This transition puts Fulcrum on a common footing with the most active Samvera development, making it easier both to benefit from and contribute back to the latest and greatest work happening at other Samvera applications.

Looking ahead to 2018, the Fulcrum team will be busier than ever! The first part of the year will see us working hard to bring the University of Michigan Press title A Mid-Republican House from Gabii to Fulcrum. Currently available on our DLXS platform, A Mid-Republican House from Gabii will migrate to Fulcrum, demonstrating Fulcrum’s ability to present a born-digital publication that is equal parts narrative, 3D model, and database, in an intuitive, user-friendly way. Expect to hear much more about this over the next few months.

Fulcrum is committed to the Samvera open source community and we continue to work with the community to improve and extend its offerings for digital publishing. In the early months of 2018, Fulcrum developers will contribute to a community-organized development effort to improve the analytics and reporting capabilities in Hyrax, keeping a particular eye on uses that will be useful to publishers and authors.

We’re also excited about working with Michigan State University Usability/Accessibility Research and Consulting (MSU-UARC) at the beginning of the year, performing functional accessibility testing on our platform and e-reader.

Last, but not least, the next year will also see us perform a major migration of the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Humanities E-Book collection to Fulcrum. A first rollout of just over a dozen titles will happen in the spring, with the remaining several thousand titles launching in August. We’ll be using the ACLS migration to Fulcrum to continue improving the e-reader user experience – adding annotation tools, download options, and other features based on user testing and feedback.

The above does not really capture the full extent of the effort that has gone into Fulcrum this year or that will go into the next. The Fulcrum team is constantly moving and improving, and, admittedly, it’s been hard to stop from time to time and reflect and report out to you. For the new year, we resolve to do that more often.

Holiday Deals from University Presses

Looking for your next read? Perhaps something intellectually stimulating, or conversation-provoking, or just a gift for your curious uncle? Well, you’re in luck because we here at Humanities E-Book have rounded up some great holiday deals from university presses for you! We’ve highlighted 12 books for the 12 days of Christmas:

Courtesy of Rutgers University Press

Rutgers University Press is offering 40% off and free shipping for all books on their site (make sure to use discount code 02RURU18 at checkout). Here are a few we thought would be great conversation starters:

Wonder Woman” by Noah Berlatsky – $29.95 (Paperback)
On Racial Icons: Blackness and the Public Imagination” by Nicole R. Fleetwood – $14.95 (Paperback)
Prohibition Gangsters: The Rise and Fall of a Bad Generation” by Marc Mappen – $24.95 (Cloth)



Courtesy of Indiana University Press

Indiana University Press is also offering 40% off books purchased through their website until December 20th. Here are some unique titles that caught our eye (prices shown include the discount):

Elegies for Uncanny Girls” by Jennifer Colville – $11.40 (Paperback)
Chuck Taylor, All Star: The True Story of the Man behind the Most Famous Athletic Shoe in History” by Abe Aamidor – $12.00 (Paperback)
American Jukebox: A Photographic Journey” by Christopher Felver – $30.00 (Hardcover)



Courtesy of The University of North Carolina Press

The University of North Carolina Press is also offering 40% off all books and free shipping on orders over $75 (discount code: 01HOLIDAY). We noticed quite a few cookbooks from them that would make great gifts for those New Year’s resolution-making family members:

The Farmhouse Chef: Recipes and Stories from My Carolina Farm” by Jamie DeMent – $35.00 (Hardcover)
Learn to Cook 25 Southern Classics in 3 Ways: Traditional, Contemporary, International” by Jennifer Brule – $30.00 (Hardcover)
Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time” by Adrian Miller – $22.00 (Paperback), $30.00 (Hardcover)


The University Press of Kentucky is offering up to up to 50% off of select books through January 31, 2018 with discount code FHOL. Here are a few of their fascinating titles:

Courtesy of The University Press of Kentucky

Stuntwomen: The Untold Hollywood Story” by Mollie Gregory – $40.00 (Cloth)
Crossing the River: A Novel” by Fenton Johnson – $19.95 (Paperback)
Who Killed Betty Gail Brown? Murder, Mistrial, and Mystery” by Robert G. Lawson – $34.95 (Cloth)