Our treasure trove of printed journals

By Chloe Dobson – Collection Development Librarian

Did you know that we have a basement area in The Library which is full of printed journals from all subject areas?

Image of the rolling stacks in the basement of The Library
Rolling stacks of print journals

We provide access to tens of thousands of journals online, which is a fantastic way to reach a world of research at your fingertips. But there are benefits from looking at print journals too. Some journals are only available in print, so we keep them for that reason alone and many will be current, where we still receive a new issue regularly. For example we have current subscriptions to the Spectator (from 1928 onwards at AP 4 SPE) and Sight and Sound (from 1967 onwards at PN 1993 SIG)

Image of the journal Magazine of art, open to show pages of journal
Magazine of art (1878-1903)

Some are only partially online, so we retain print to enable access to the whole archive. Other titles have the same availability online as well as in print.. but we still hold the printed issues for areas such as the Visual Arts, Art History, Photography. Many titles are historical and consulting them can bring many benefits, as described by Thomas Elliot, one of our Doctoral Researchers in Art History:

“Print journals are a rich and important resource. They provide a privileged glimpse into the visual and written culture of the past in a very unique way. The very nature of the printed page can in itself be illuminating; what do the articles surrounding my source tell me about the topic? Where is my source placed in relation to other items? Is it a cover story or hidden away at the back? What images, adverts, reviews or op-eds accompany it? All of these considerations can provide us as researchers with a deeper and more nuanced understanding of our area of study – even if they don’t make it into our final project!”

How do we know which titles are in the Basement?

All our print journals are discoverable on Library Search. You can search by keyword and then limit your results by Availability, and then by Available in the Library to show available print titles only.

Screenshot of availability facet menu on Library search, highlighting 'Available in the Library'
Screenshot of Library Search – showing availability

Journals are arranged A-Z by shelfmark and follow the same classification system as our books, so if your subject area is usually in the PNs, target this area in the Basement.

Some examples of titles available in our fabulous print journal collection;

  • The Radio Times: Broadcasting listings, news, interviews covering 1990-2018, found at AP 4 RAD
  • Punch: The satirical magazine, packed with illustrations and cartoons, from 1841-1963, found at AP 4 PUN
  • Stuff: Guide to gadgets, technology and electronics, 2015-2020, found at TK 9900 STU
Image of the journal Conisseur, open to show pages of journal
Connoisseur (1901-1963)

At the moment there is a collection service running for titles in the Basement but once access is resumed it is a wonderful space to browse and find something new.

If you would like any further information on our print journal collections, or any of our Library collections don’t hesitate to get in touch, library.collectiondevelopment@sussex.ac.uk

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