Marilyn Pukkila, SRS Librarian for Social Sciences and Humanitites  Staff Spotlight: Marilyn Pukkila

I am a research librarian: I show people how to find the information they need/want, how to use it effectively, and how to document it ethically in their work. I do this by teaching classes and holding one on one consultations. I work with faculty and students from 10 different departments to ensure that the Libraries are offering the best possible collections and services. I also teach courses on Harry Potter, J.R.R. Tolkien, contemporary Witchcraft, and women in myth and fairy tale.

1. Describe yourself in 3 words.

Welcoming, Scholarly, Inclusive.

2. What do you value most about your work?  

In the words of Christa McAuliffe: I touch the future: I teach. What could be more wonderful than to work with each successive generation of students (who keep me abreast of trends in popular culture, especially stories), to be able to find out almost anything about almost anything I want, and to have incredible information resources at my fingertips? Not to mention amazingly wonderful colleagues who support me!

3. When not at work, what three activities do you enjoy the most?

Reading, theater (live and filmed), travel.

4. What are your reading/watching/listening to?

Reading: Patricia Bracewell’s The Price of Blood; works about Tolkien (the next scholarly project); writings about Scotland and the Vikings (this year’s “sister trip” is to the Scottish Isles following Viking routes!)
Watching: TV’s Once Upon a Time Season 3; CAN’T WAIT for the next Sherlock!!!!
Listening to: NPR, MPBN, classical, folk, and movie music.

5. In your own words…

My first book, The Skill of a Seeker: Rowling, Religion, and Gen 9/11 is being published on March 5, 2015 by Polar Bear & Co. (a small Maine independent non-profit publisher), so I am up to my ears in getting the word out! I hope it will lead readers to think about religion/spirituality more broadly and bring them even more enjoyment of the Harry Potter series. I also hope it will shed some light on the ways people of Gen 9/11 (which I also call Gen HP!) experience spirituality and religion.