Does torture work?

Photo of hands in handcuffs

Well, you’ll have to read John W. Schiemann’s book to find out.

In his 2015 publication, Does Torture Work?, Schiemann ‘examines whether interrogational torture is effective in obtaining valuable information and at what cost in terms of torture’s brutality and frequency’ (taken from abstract).

According to the abstract, the book ‘draws on historical accounts, previously secret CIA documents in the war on terrorism, and the proposals advanced by torture proponents to build a game theoretic model of interrogational torture’.

‘Illustrating the model outcomes with narratives from Pinochet’s Chile to Algeria to the use of enhanced interrogation techniques against Al Qaeda operatives at CIA black sites, the book compares the results of the model with proponent benchmarks on information reliability, torture frequency, and torture severity’.

In his book, Schiemann shows that ‘interrogational torture fails to reliably generate valuable information but will be both more frequent and more brutal than proponents expect and are willing to accept. Having shown that interrogational torture is ineffective, the book then demonstrates just why and how it fails’.

You can read this book online via the Oxford Scholarship Online: Political Science database.

The database contains the full text and abstracts of classic and newly published Oxford books in the areas of political science – from Comparative Politics to Political Theory, International Relations to European Union Studies.

More than 400 free eBooks are now in JSTOR

Free eBooks? Yes, please! Thanks to a new partnership with ANU Press, JSTOR’s Open Access eBook Collection has expanded to more than 500 titles.

The 409 peer-reviewed research publications from ANU are available in an open access model on the JSTOR platform.

They cover a wide range of disciplines and did we mention they are completely free for anyone to read? Here’s a small selection to tempt you:

Bayesian Methods for Statistical Analysis
By Borek Puza (2015)
Bayesian Methods for Statistical Analysis is a book on statistical methods for analysing a wide variety of data. The book consists of 12 chapters, starting with basic concepts and covering numerous topics, including Bayesian estimation, decision theory, prediction, hypothesis testing, hierarchical models, Markov chain Monte Carlo methods, finite population inference, biased sampling and nonignorable nonresponse.

Change!: Combining Analytic Approaches with Street Wisdom
Edited by Gabriele Bammer (2015)
Change happens all the time, so why is driving particular change generally so hard? Why are the outcomes often unpredictable? Are some types of change easier to achieve than others? Are some techniques for achieving change more effective than others. Knowledge about change is fragmented and there is nowhere in the academic or practice worlds that provide comprehensive answers to these and other questions. Every discipline and practice area has only a partial view and there is not even a map of those different perspectives. The purpose of this book is to begin the task of developing a comprehensive approach to change by gathering a variety of viewpoints from the academic and practice worlds.

Planning and Managing Scientific Research: A guide for the beginning researcher
By Brian Kennett (2014)
This work is based on extensive scientific research and management experiences and is designed to provide an introduction to planning and managing scientific research for the beginning researcher. The aim is to build an understanding of the nature of scientific research, and the way in which research projects can be developed, planned and managed to a successful outcome. The book is designed to help the transition from being a member of a research team to developing a project and making them work and to provide a framework for future work.

A healthy dose of new nursing resources

Photo of laptop and fruit on a desk

Exciting news! We’ve upgraded the Nursing and Health Professional Premier Collection.

Published by Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins (LWW), this collection gives you access to the top nursing journals used by nurses, nursing students, and health professionals around the world.

We’ve added 31 new titles to the collection this year. Here’s a selection of what’s available:

ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal
This journal covers all aspects of exercise science and nutrition research, with components of ACSM certification workshops, current topics of interest to the fitness industry, and continuing education credit opportunities.

Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal
A peer-reviewed journal designed to meet the needs of advanced practice clinicians, clinical nurse specialists, nurse practitioners, health care professionals, and clinical and academic educators in emergency nursing. Articles contain evidence-based material that can be applied to daily practice.

Advances in Neonatal Care
Affiliated with the National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN), this journal addresses the practice challenges faced every day caring for the 40,000-plus low-birth-weight infants each year. It promotes evidence-based care and improved outcomes for the tiniest patients and their families.

Advances in Nursing Science
This journal encourages works that speak to the need for global sustainability and that take an intersectional approach, recognizing class, color, sexual and gender identity, and other dimensions of human experience related to health. Articles in ANS are peer-reviewed and chosen for their pioneering perspectives and for their significance in contributing the evolution of the discipline of nursing.

Advances in Skin & Wound Care
This peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary journal is highly regarded for its unique balance of cutting-edge original research and practical clinical management articles on wounds and other problems of skin integrity.

The songs of James Bond

What’s your favourite James Bond film theme song? Madonna’s Die Another Day? Tina Turner’s Goldeneye? Or maybe A View to a Kill by Duran Duran?

We are quite partial to Adele’s opening number in the 2012 film Skyfall. And as it turns out, we have great taste in music. Rolling Stone magazine ranked James Bond film theme songs from best to worst and crowned Shirley Bassey’s Goldfinger (1964) as the winner; Adele came in at number four.

How did your favourite fare? Apologies to all of you who enjoy Lulu’s The Man with the Golden Gun. It is the worst of its genre, according to the 2015 Rolling Stone magazine article.

The iconic music magazine isn’t the only publication that has examined the songs of 007. We came across a particularly interesting title in the Oxford Scholarship Online (OSO) music collection.

Written by Adrian Daub and Charles Kronengold, The James Bond Songs: Pop Anthems of Late Capitalism (2015) illustrates how our conception of what a pop song is has changed over time.

The authors ‘argue that the story of the Bond song is the story of the pop song more generally, and perhaps even the story of its end. Each chapter discusses a particular segment of the Bond canon and contextualizes it in its era’s music and culture’ (Amazon).

You can access the full text of The James Bond Songs: Pop Anthems of Late Capitalism online in OSO. The OSO music collection contains titles from Oxford University Press and covers significant titles in musicology and music history, ethnomusicology, and music theory. The collection now includes over 160 new titles.

Advertising you actually want to see

Girl waking up to music from clock radio

Vintage ads are awesome! Wake up to music! © The Advertising Archives. Further reproduction prohibited without permission.

Advertising is prolific.

They interrupt your favourite shows on television, they are literally every single page of the last mag you purchased and don’t even get me started on Facebooks ads (those sponsored posts featuring products you just viewed are super creepy).

But ads can be a delight. Especially when they are of the vintage variety and feature old fashioned products with politically incorrect slogans. Whether it’s for cigarettes, canned soup or laundry soap, old-school advertisements can be comical, kooky or just plain questionable.

Want to see some ads from yesteryear? Take a look at the American Consumer Culture database and view hundreds of advertising images in the Ad Gallery.

American Consumer Culture ‘is a treasure trove of information on some of America’s best-known brands’. The Ad Gallery features American advertisements from the 1920s through to the 1960s. Think brands like Clairol, Cadbury, Coca-Cola and Colgate. Barbie also makes an appearance but she doesn’t quite look herself in one of the ads.

Oh, and since the database features advertising from days of old when cigarette advertising wasn’t taboo, you’ll also find well-known tobacco brands like Lucky Strike and Marlboro (you must have heard of the Marlboro Man?)

But the database is more than just advertising images. American Consumer Culture provides a unique insight into the American consumer boom of the mid-20th century through access to the market research reports and supporting documents of Ernest Dichter; the era’s foremost consumer analyst and market research pioneer.

Basically, it contains heaps of information on advertising, such as a creative research memorandum on the psychology of hot dogs, a report on how to get more people to go to the movies, a pilot study on the Bird’s Eye logo, and more.

Not that you’ll need more. Once you understand the mind science of a sausage, your consumer culture education is complete. No, not really. Check out American Consumer Culture today.

Music eResources and all that jazz


Without music, life would B flat. That’s why you should visit Alexander Street and treat yourself to streaming music, videos and scores.

Whether you are into jazz, hip-hop, pop or opera, Alexander Street will surely have a tune or two for you.

So where is this musical street? West End? The Valley? Or some exotic destination, like Havana, Seattle or Ibiza? Actually, it’s an online music platform and available via the Library Catalogue.

Alexander Street is a massive collection of music databases that you can easily search and browse. Want to search across all the collections for a particular composer, performer, genre or subject? You totally can.

Here’s a small selection of what’s on offer:

Classical Scores Library

Scores for all major classical musical genres and time periods, from the Middle Ages to the 21st century. With study, piano, and vocal scores, this comprehensive collection will enhance the study of music history, performance, composition and theory for a variety of scholars. Scores are great to use when listening to a recording!

Classical Music in Video

Classical music performances, including major orchestral performances by leading orchestras, chamber music, oratorio, and solo performances. There’s also masterclasses and interviews with master teachers from around the world.

The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music 

A comprehensive online resource devoted to music research of all the world’s people. You can browse and search hundreds of articles about the music of every continent. Articles are enriched with audio tracks, musical illustrations, photographs, drawings, song texts, score examples, charts and maps.

Jazz Music Library

The largest and most comprehensive collection of streaming jazz available online — with thousands of jazz artists, ensembles, albums, and genres.

Opera in Video 

Five hundred hours of the most important opera performances captured on video through staged productions, interviews, and documentaries. Selections represent the world’s best performers, conductors, and opera houses and are based on a work’s importance to the operatic canon.

Popular Music Library

A wide range of popular music from around the world, including hundreds of thousands of tracks from major genres in pop music, including alternative, country, Christian, electronic, hip-hop, metal, punk, new age, R&B, reggae, rock, soundtracks and many more.

4 free apps to help you search our databases


Griffith University Library subscribes to a gazillion databases (this may be a slight exaggeration) to provide you with the information you need for work or study. And you probably search them on a daily basis to write your essay, thesis or academic paper.

But did you know that some of your favourite databases have a mobile app? They make it super easy to access information on your mobile device, regardless whether it’s a smartphone or tablet; android or apple device.

We’ve rounded up 4 database apps to help you out.

1. PressReader

Available: iTunes and Google Play
Get your favorite publications and discover new titles that you’re sure to love. Choose from thousands of magazines and newspapers and read it from cover to cover, just the way the title was printed. See the PressReader page on the Library website for instructions on how to access publications from home.

2. EBSCOhost

Available: iTunes and Google Play
Whether you need eBooks, magazine articles, journal articles or newspapers, EBSCOhost has a database for you. And they cover a variety of subject areas – business, science, art, nursing, criminal justice. The list is endless. This free app ensures you get the most from searching EBSCOhost database content, provided courtesy of your library.

3. AustLII

Available: iTunes and Google Play
AustLII puts the power of Australia’s most popular online free-access resource for legal information right into the palm of your hand. Get access to law on your mobile device wherever you are. Browse legislation from the Commonwealth and from every Australian State and Territory, and cases from over 140 courts, tribunals and boards.

4. Bluefire Reader

Available: iTunes and Google Play
Download eBooks from Proquest’s Ebrary on your mobile device and read them on Bluefire Reader. With just a tap you can highlight, bookmark, annotate, look up a definition and share excerpts via email, Facebook and Twitter.