Have You Seen… Sadleir House Library


Located in Room 107 of the historically significant Sadleir House, The Sadleir House Library has something of interest for everyone. There are not only rare works of fiction, but a whole host of items relating to your studies that cannot be found in Biko or the Peterborough Public Library. According to its website, the Library focuses on “Higher Education philosophy, history, and criticism (with particular focus on the residential college model), community building & engagement, and Victorian & Modern architecture.” In a 2009 Sadleir House newsletter, the library is described as “made up mostly of donations from retired Trent professors. The collections of Denis Smith, John Hillman, and most recently, Michael Peterman, alongside other donations comprise a library that is currently just over 1000 volumes strong and growing.”

The Alternative Resource Library is a library within a library. The ARL is a collection of resources (including books and videos) that was compiled in sync with OPIRG Peterborough, the Trent Queer Collective, and the Centre for Gender & Social Justice (formerly the Trent Women’s Centre). Thus, the ARL houses many resources that have traditionally not been included in libraries at Trent and reflect the diverse interests of students’ studies both inside and outside of the classroom. Again, according to its website, “[t]his collection focuses on feminist theory, environmental issues, cultural theory, politics, and other areas of social justice.”

The Alternative Resource Libraries at Trent Initiative (ALTi) was started in 2005 by Sadleir House, OPIRG, the Trent Central Student Association, and the then Trent Women’s Centre. Its hope was to link all of the various resources housed by various student groups in order to facilitate centralization of Trent’s alternative resources for the greater ease of use for students. Since then, the Kawartha World Issues Centre (KWIC) and the Trent Centre for Community Based Education have been included in the online, open source, searchable database (hosted by ILS Koha).

When Have You Seen… went out of business, it was the Sadleir House Library and Gzowski College(the greatest college at Trent) that teamed up to raise over $10 000 in order to house the majority of the collection at Sadleir House. There are over 12 000 titles in the Have You Seen… Collection available for borrowing. “Digital acquisition of film is not what facilitates community building. A place where people can congregate and talk about what they are watching, why they watch things, and what others should watch is what Have You Seen… provided and we are hoping that we can facilitate that same atmosphere here,” says Dwayne Collins, Steward of Sadleir House. Howard Gibbs, former co-owner of Have You Seen…, regarded at the ‘Have You Heard’ talk put on by Gzowski College at the Peterborough Public Library last year, that it is “an amazing silver lining that it [the DVD collection] is still going to be there in some form.”


The Have You Seen… Collection at the Sadleir House Library also includes many Nazi and Halocaust movies donated by Lady Eaton College. Collins himself, as well as many other employees and volunteers, have been working hard to catalogue all of the films so that they can be easily searched and accessed. Right now, all of the films are available for loan with your Alternative Resource Library card which is free to obtain. The collection is organized alphabetically right now, but in the future will be divided by genre.

Another feature of the Sadleir House Library is its housing of the newly formed Sadleir House Centre for Pixel Culture. This video game institute has a collection of video games and video game systems from the Calico Vision all the way to the Nintendo 64. More than just a video game club, the Centre for Pixel Culture emphasizes video games as cultural text and encourages not only the playing of video games, but the study of them as well. They have frequent talks, seminars and “Critical Game Play” sessions where you can learn about the video games as you are playing them.

Theatre Trent has also sponsored a collection of material related to producing theatre, as well as texts about thinking about theatre.

You can get an Alternative Resource Library card by providing a piece of ID and proof of address at the Sadleir House Library (rm 107, Sadleir House). Since the library is volunteer run, a schedule of its operating hours can be found on the Sadleir House Facebook group and their website , or the library can be accessed during Sadleir House’s hours of operation. And if you always wanted to be a video store clerk, The Sadleir House Library is always looking for volunteers.

About Anthony P. Gulston 0 Articles
Redheaded radio writer that specializes in events coverage, underwater journalism and media news. Listen to his reggae radio program, the Anth co dub-Station on Trent Radio, read his blog, read his work in Absynthe or follow him on Twitter.