In response to concerns raised among Oxfordians regarding long-term plans for maintaining research materials online, Oxfordian Bill Boyle — owner of Shakespeare Adventure and creator of the New England Shakespeare Oxford Library and its attendant online service, the Shakespeare Online Authorship Resources (SOAR) — prepared the following message:
Long-term planning for Oxfordian research is the goal of the Shakespeare Online Authorship Resources (SOAR) and the New England Shakespeare Oxford Library, and also for the Shakespeare Authorship Research Centre (SARC) at Concordia University. Since SARC is now officially open at Concordia, such long-term planning is one of the things we will be discussing this April 8-11, at the 14th annual Shakespeare Authorship Research Conference.
Dan Wright has informed me that the seminar room and classroom in the SARC will be available all day April 7, 8 and 12 for groups to meet and discuss projects. I plan to hold a meeting during the conference on Thursday, April 7 to discuss long-term plans for the Shakespeare Online Authorship Resources (SOAR).
If you go to the Shakespeare Online Authorship Resources (SOAR) right now and search under “family” or “birth” you will see new entries that I have added with links to material on Nina Green’s The Oxford Authorship Site. If you search under “Willobie” (for Willobie his Avisa) you will find six entries that demonstrate how I envision SOAR working when there are many hundreds (or actually, thousands) of entries. These Willobie entries include two for research notes Barbara Flues sent me on Willobie two years ago, so as you can see how they are now easy to access. Files could just as easily be maintained at SARC/Concordia, or anywhere where one person agrees to be responsible and for which the minimum funds are available to keep an account open forever (and by minimum I think about $10/month would do it …text files are not that large). Keep in mind with SOAR the actual location of files is not important as long as they are maintained somewhere. Also, such files could be kept in protected, passworded directories if any author/researcher so requests.
To access SOAR go to http://www.shakespeareoxfordlibrary.org and click on SOAR in the-left hand column.
Note also under the Willobie entiries in SOAR that two are for articles available only by subscription. Since the SARC has now created a new status of campus student called “SARC Associate Scholars” anyone with an interest in Shakespeare and/or the authorship question can be enrolled at the SARC for a small annual fee ($95.00) and gain access to an incredible amount of material, most especially JSTOR (the mother load of humanities research articles). I will be creating links to JSTOR materials that will use the SARC proxy ID, so that access is streamlined for anyone with a SARC ID. Of course, anyone with access to JSTOR can always get at these articles, but most such access is limited to universities and very big public libraries (such as the state of Michigan electronic library, Michigan eLibrary, at http://mel.org/) LT)
Go to this address for more info about the Shakespeare Authorship Research Center: http://www.authorshipstudies.org/databaseSubscriptions.cfm
Comments are welcome.
CORRECTION from Deb Biggs Thomas, MeL Coordinator, Library of Michigan: Just to let you know that the Michigan eLibrary does not have JSTOR as one of its statewide databases. We do, however, have others in which Michigan residents may find humanities articles. Best thing to do first is a full-text journal search; click on the button on the MeL homepage that says: Full Text Magazines and Journals.