Past Exhibits


Main Exhibit Space:

Other Library Exhibit Spaces:

Main Exhibit Space:

Controversies, Scandals, and Conspiracy Theories

December 18, 2007 - February 21, 2008

From the creation of the Republic, America has always had a healthy interest in it's political leaders.  An open and free society commands that the government keep a historic record of its biggest errors in judgment, investigate acts of misconduct, and research accusations of misdeeds and cover-ups as part of the accountability demanded by the general population. 

Using a collection of special reports, congressional documents, declassified information, posters, maps, publications and multimedia clips from the Government and Geographic Information and Data Services department and University Archives, the exhibit highlights a variety of controversies, scandals and conspiracies. To view more specific topics within the exhibit, please click here. This exhibit is also accompanied by an online bibliography.

Festival of Maps

October 30 - December 14, 2007

High & Low: Chicago Hand Bookbinders Exhibition 2007

July 3 – September 13, 2007

This year’s Chicago Hand Bookbinder’s Exhibition offers interpretations on the theme HIGH & LOW, reflecting on Chicago as a city of contrasts. It is the birthplace of both the skyscraper and Frank Lloyd Wright’s horizontal Prairie School Architecture. It is the home of Poetry Magazine and Playboy bunnies. It is threatened by both wind chill and heat advisory indices. And both the celebrated fine binder Bill Anthony and corporate giant General Binding Corporation call Chicago Home. The fourteen binders in this show express a broad range of interpretations, from the exquisite to the sublime, and from the serious to the playful.
The Chicago Hand Bookbinders (CHB) was founded in 1978 to promote the awareness, understanding and appreciation of books made by hand. CHB members are amateur, student, and professional binders, and others from the general public who are interested in the book arts. The members’ aims are to learn from one another through the sharing of skills and techniques; to educate the public through exhibitions and demonstrations; and to encourage the highest standards in the craft of bookbinding. Membership is open to anyone interested in books and the book arts, whether they are from Chicago or not.


An Admirable Nucleus

May 1 - June 28, 2007

Fifty Years of African Independence

February 27, 2007-April 26, 2007

Fifty years ago, on March 6, 1957, the British colony then known as the Gold Coast became Ghana, the first modern African nation to achieve its independence from colonial European powers. Between that date and the day in 1994 when Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as the first president of majority-ruled South Africa, no fewer than 47 African nations emerged from various forms of colonial rule. Fifty Years of African Independence not only celebrates this remarkable half-century of African self-definition, but also commemorates the role that Melville J. Herskovits, founder of the University’s ground-breaking African Studies program and world-renowned Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies, played in the process.

Other Exhibit Spaces:


Recent African Filmfilm

December 2007 - March 2008

Celebrating recent African film, this exhibition is mounted as a collaborative effort between Esmeralda Kale, Bibliographer of Africana, and Christopher Hayden, of the Undergraduate Research Program in the Provost's Office.   Among the films featured in this exhibit are some that will be shown during winter quarter, 2008, in the Program of African Studies film series: <>. Films featured in the exhibit can also be checked out from the Mitchell Multimedia Center in the University Library.

Art Collection

Fashion & Architecture

This exhibit explores the relationship and / or overlap between fashion and architecture. For instance, can you 'wear your chair'? Come and ponder this radical question. Items highlight new books acquired in the last year.

Music Library

Music Library Holdings Exhibited Around the World

In addition to making its holdings of manuscripts and other rare materials available to students, faculty and visiting researchers, the Northwestern University Music Library lends items to museums for special exhibitions. Displayed are select items that have been presented in the United Statees, Austria, Germany, France, England, Italy and Switzerland. Catalogs are also included in the exhibit.


Exhibits Committee
Northwestern University Library
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL 60208-2300


Last updated: April 21, 2008