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Archive for the 'University Press News' Category

Friday, January 23rd, 2015

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

This week started off with Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, so it’s only fitting that this week’s University Press Roundup should start with posts from a number of blogs in honor of the occasion. First of all, at the Florida Bookshelf, the blog of the University Press of Florida, W. Jason Miller explains how the poetry of Langston Hughes inspired Martin Luther King, Jr.’s sermons. Jennifer J. Yanco, writing at the Indiana University Press blog, looks at the recently released film Selma, and wonders whether the movie could be a turning point in how people see Dr. King, while Hasan Kwame Jeffries looks at the actual events of Selma in 1965 at From the Square, the blog of NYU Press. Finally, at the SUP blog, Vincent J. Intondi uncovers a less frequently discussed aspect of Dr. King’s politics: his stance against the use and creation of nuclear weapons.

At the University of Washington Press Blog, Laura Kina discusses “the emerging discipline of mixed race studies,” how it has been affected by recent racially charged events (particularly those at Ferguson), and what it can offer to the public dialogues about race in America.

“In the aftermath of the Paris terror attacks, the Islamophobia pervading Western democracies is the best recruitment tool for violent extremists.” Writing at the OUPblog, Justin Gest makes the case that violent and/or oppressive backlash against Muslims in Western countries following terrorist attacks (France is the most recent example), is a major part of the plan for Islamic extremists who are behind such attacks. Meanwhile, at fifteeneightyfour, the blog of Cambridge University Press, Emile Chabal asks whether crises like the Charlie Hebdo attack actually serve to unite France, rather than divide it.

Thursday was the 42nd anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, and in honor of the occasion, the Harvard University Press Blog is featuring an adapted excerpt from the Foreword to Mary Ziegler’s After Roe: The Lost History of the Abortion Debate. Ziegler argues that “by paying attention so exclusively to the Supreme Court we have lost a much richer story about the evolution of abortion politics.”

This week, the Penn Press Log introduced an exciting new addition to the academic publishing blogosphere: the JHIBlog of the Journal of the History of Ideas. They also featured the first JHIBlog post, which explains what the new blog hopes to accomplish.


Friday, January 16th, 2015

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

We’ll start things off this week with a post at the JHU Press Blog written by Keith Brock of the John’s Hopkins University Press staff. Brock discusses the JHUP Diversity Committee, and tells the story of how he helped to create it. Some of the work that the JHUP Diversity Committee does: “I can proudly say that we have started our process through volunteer activities, community collaborations (both internal and external), diversity training, creating mission statements, and increasing awareness.”

Professor Juan Flores, a well-known and widely respected scholar of Puerto Rican identity and culture, passed away in late 2014. At the UNC Press Blog, Christina D. Abreu honors Flores and discusses the ongoing importance of his work in a guest post.

Stanford University Press is launching a “novel publishing initiative for scholars in the digital humanities and computational social sciences” with grant funding from the Mellon Foundation. This week, the SUP blog is hosting a series of posts on what it means to publish digital scholarship, with articles explaining the new program, explaining their reasoning behind the move to a new publishing paradigm, and explaining how the new digital-born scholarship will aid researchers.

The attack on the Charlie Hebdo office has prompted a wide range of responses, and several scholarly publishing blogs have posted interesting takes on the situation. At fifteeneightyfour, the blog of Cambridge University Press, Ritu Gairola Khanduri looks at the reaction to the Charlie Hebdo cartoons through the lens of her work on similarly provocative cartoons in India, with a focus on how “[c]artoons show us that politics is sensory.” At the OUPblog, Christopher Hill argues that these attacks mark the end of the “French exception,” a term describing the relative freedom from terrorist attack that France has enjoyed over the past fifteen years, particularly in comparison to European neighbors like Spain and Britain. And at Beacon Broadside, Kay Whitlock and Michael Bronski worry that “the reaction to these tragic killings seamlessly moves forward within an easily manipulated narrative. This story is compellingly shaped by the twin themes of terrorism and destruction of freedom of speech. Because this narrative is framed by the politics of fear, resentment, and vengeance, it has become as volatile and potentially incendiary as the actions that produced it.” (more…)

Friday, January 9th, 2015

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

Congratulations to the University of North Carolina Press! As detailed on the UNC Press Blog, the press has just been awarded “a $998,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation of New York to support the development of capacities at university presses for the publication of high-quality digital monographs.” This news is, needless to say, very exciting, as are the plans the press has for the money: “The funding will be used to create a scaled platform where university presses will collaborate to achieve cost efficiencies on a broad range of digital publishing activities, including copyediting, composition, production, operations, and marketing services.”

On from one form of digital innovation in scholarship to another: the University of Toronto Press Publishing Blog has a fascinating post up this week about a “digital humanities project” undertaken by a professor using a UTP history title. An instructor at Wifrid Laurier University, Alicia McKenzie, taught a class on the Viking Age using The Viking Age: A Reader as the primary text. In order to prompt in-depth interaction with the primary texts contain in the reader, McKenzie had her students annotate one or more documents from the Viking Age and then create a digital exhibit based on the annotations. In her post, McKenzie describes how successful these projects were, and details some of the lessons she learned in the process.

The Imitation Game, a recently released film based on Alan Turing and the German Enigma code, has received generally glowing reviews, but at the Yale Books Unbound blog, Sharon Bertsch McGrayne argues that, while it’s a “good yarn,” the movie is “a gross distortion of Turing’s character,” with most of the changes made in the interest of making a potboiler at the expense of accuracy. (more…)

Friday, December 19th, 2014

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

Wilfred Laurier University Press has recently been told that WLU will be withdrawing the support that the press had previously received from the university, as WLUP is “not essential to the vision and mission of the University. There’s a Hole in the Bucket, the blog of the University of Alberta Press, has more information on this situation, and provides a link to a petition to reverse the decision.

Hunting for a job is always frightening, and writing résumés and cover letters is a particularly intimidating part of the process. At the AMACOM Books Blog, Scott Bennett has a two part interview in which he offers his expertise in résumé styling in order to make this one part of finding a job a bit more palatable.

The “Swedish model” of reducing prostitution, sex trafficking, and violence against sex workers has been much discussed recently online. However, at Beacon Broadside, Melinda Chateauvert is less than sanguine about the often-lauded strategies that Sweden has employed. She argues that “the violence and stigma against people in the sex industry must be understood from sex workers’ points of view, not a “female POV,” whatever that is.”

A great deal of information concerning the use of torture by United States military and intelligence organizations has come out recently with releasing of the Feinstein Report. At fifteeneightyfour, the blog of Cambridge University Press, David P. Forsythe attempts to use the new data to add details to the general story of the US actions following September 11, 2001.

When Amy L. Stone wrote Gay Rights at the Ballot Box, which discussed the period between 1974 and 2009, it seemed that there would continue to be marriage bans voted into law for some time. In a post at the University of Minnesota Blog, however, she writes about the flurry of court cases overturning these laws that have happened over the past several years, and about the future of gay rights at the ballot box.

The UNC Press Blog has posted a fascinating excerpt from Shabana Mir’s Muslim American Women on Campus, in which Mir looks at Muslim American students engage in various types of leisure practices common at colleges around the US, particularly those involving the consumption of alcohol.

Should different ways of giving birth (in this case, C-sections and vaginal births) be treated as “being the same”? Theresa Morris argues that, while she understands the urge to do so, these two methods of giving birth should absolutely not be treated as being equivalent, as doing so can reinforce the mistaken notion that women are in control of their birth process in today’s world.

The aforementioned Feinstein report was not the only recently released report on the United States’ use of torture. At the OUPblog, Rebecca Gordon discusses the report issued by the UN Committee Against Torture, explaining some key points and arguing that a large part of the problem lies in American law, rather than just in the action of military and intelligence agencies.

In celebration of the holidays, the Princeton University Press Blog is running a 12-post series of The Twelve Grimm Days of Christmas, in which they are posting a story a day from their new translation of the first edition of the famous fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm. One fun example: the seventh story is the story of a farmer’s son who happens to be born as a hedgehog rather than a human.

Finally, the University of Washington Press Blog has a interesting post up by David B. Williams about Bertha, the tunnel-borer that has been stuck under Seattle for a year. As the blog describes the problem at hand: “New reports indicate that Pioneer Square has sunk an inch since Thanksgiving and that a number of historic buildings and roadways are newly compromised by the beleaguered tunnel project.”

Thanks for reading! As always, we hope that you enjoyed the links. Please let us know what you think in the comments!

Friday, December 12th, 2014

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

December 10th was Human Rights Day. In honor of the occasion, the Stanford University Press Blog and the OUPblog both have great posts looking at the history and current status of the idea of “human rights” around the world. At the SUP blog, Mark Goodale looks at the history of what it means to have a “right to rights,” while Boaventura de Sousa Santos finds troubling problems in the history of human rights thinking and advocates “a counter-hegemonic conception of human rights.” At the OUPblog, Kenneth Roth identifies the difficulties in instituting changes to combat human rights abuses carried out by governments.

Questions about the rights and limitations of both people interacting with police officers and the police themselves have been widely discussed recently, following the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. At Beacon Broadside, Noliwe M. Rooks attempts to bring the Kerner Commission Report, first published in 1968 in response to clashes between the civil rights movement and police, into the conversation. She argues that it’s hard to imagine that any new report “will be more prescient than the Kerner Commission, which ends its report by acknowledging, ‘We have provided an honest beginning. We have learned much. But we have uncovered no startling truths, no unique insights, no simple solutions. The destruction and the bitterness of racial disorder, the harsh polemics of black revolt and white repression have been seen and heard before in this country. It is time now to end the destruction and the violence, not only in the streets of the ghetto but in the lives of people.’” Meanwhile, at fifteeneightyfour, David Krugler takes the opportunity of the current protests to take a detailed look at the history of racial tension and violence in America. By placing today’s situation side by side with racial issues from the past hundred years, he hopes to provide new insight into the sources of recent events. (more…)

Friday, November 21st, 2014

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments. (And look back at our University Press Roundup Manifesto to see why we do this post every Friday.)

While there were two high-profile accidents in the private space industry over the past few months, Chris Dubbs and Emeline Paat-Dahlstrom, writing at the University of Nebraska Press Blog, argue that “private industry can operate space services better and more cheaply than a government agency.” They believe that NASA would do better to focus on the parts of space exploration for which there is no commercial market, leaving typical launch services to private companies like Virgin Galactic, Orbital Sciences, and SpaceX.

One of the most difficult parts of academic publishing is knowing how to classify, market, and price different book projects. At the Sydney Publishing blog of The University of Sydney Press, Agata Mrva-Montoya has a post in which she takes on difficult issues publishing issues, from commissioning trade nonfiction to distinguishing between monographs and trade books.

At the JHU Press Blog, Annemarie Goldstein Jutel claims that one of the most important parts of combating a disease like Ebola is generating reasonable and informed discourse. She points out that discussions of Ebola have often used military language: “We have a war to win against Ebola and an Ebola Czar to help us do so. We try to bring the outbreak under full control to neutralize the virus,” and argues that this way of talking about the disease actually hurts the public goal of eradicating the virus.

It’s now been over two years since Hurricane Sandy came through New Jersey, New York, and other Eastern seaboard states, doing a stupendous amount of damage. At the Princeton University Press Blog, Stuart Schwartz writes that in the course of looking back at public reaction to the storm, he found something both interesting and unexpected: in his post-storm public speeches over the past two years, NJ Governor Chris Christie has been echoing those of Cuban leader Fidel Castro in the aftermath of Hurricane Flora, which devastated Cuba in 1963.

Ancient libraries, and the Library of Alexandria in particular, have long occupied near-mythic places in the public imagination as repositories of lost knowledge. However, as George W. Houston notes at the UNC Press Blog, only recently have there been serious scholarly attempts to discover traces of that lost knowledge and to reconstruct what an ancient library might have actually contained.

One of the biggest problems in regions that have been struck by disasters of any kind is reestablishing (or establishing for the first time) clean and effective systems of sanitation, a problem exacerbated in regions that are already struggling with poverty. At From the Square, the blog of NYU Press, Sara Fanning and Rob Curran discuss a possible solution to the sanitation problem in Haiti in a post honoring World Toilet Day.

Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and at the OSU Press Blog, Penelope S. Easton has a moving guest post in which she looks back at her time visiting remote hospitals in Alaska. In particular, she talks about her discovery of the mismanagement of the food supply to the Kanakanak Hospital, and how the staff and patients had to be creative in coming up with a Thanksgiving meal.

In more temperate parts of the United States, the approach of Thanksgiving means the onset of Christmas decorations, Christmas music, and Christmas sales. In a post at the Florida Bookshelf of the University Press of Florida, Ronald D. Lankford, Jr. talks about the ever-lengthening Christmas season and wonders whether the whole process is a good or a bad thing.

There have been a number of high-profile cases in which athletes have committed crimes involving domestic violence on both sides of the Atlantic in recent years. At the OUPblog, Mike Cronin looks at the case of Ched Evans, who was convicted of rape, served a prison term, and is now looking to get back into professional football (soccer), prompting widespread debate about whether teams should offer him a contract. Cronin argues that “[t]hose who govern the world of male professional sport have to realise that they administer not simply their games, but they are also responsible for the meaningful creation of men with positive values who can act, in the best ways, as role models.”

Ever wonder who had the idea for creating a Top 40 radio station? Want to learn more about how the Top 40 has changed over time? The Chicago Blog of the University of Chicago Press has a fascinating excerpt from Eric Weisbard’s Top 40 Democracy: The Rival Mainstreams of American Music in which Weisbard takes a closer look at what “Top 40″ has actually meant over the years.

John Brown’s attempt to try to violently overthrow the institution of slavery in 1859 has long been a hot topic in American history. As Ted Smith points out at the Stanford University Press Blog, Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry has been used by such diverse figures as Langston Hughes, Malcolm X, Eugene V. Debs, the Weather Underground, Timothy McVeigh, Christopher Hitchens, and Cornel West in comparisons for good or bad with current events.

Finally, wine is commonly associated with France; sugar, perhaps not so much. However, at fifteeneightfour, the blog of Cambridge University Press, Elizabeth Heath argues that the way that both commodities have been treated over the years by French government officials can tell us a great deal about French domestic and colonial policy. Heath looks at recently discovered documents from colonial Guadaloupe to reach some surprising conclusions about what the French thought about citizenship and colony in the Third Republic.

Friday, November 14th, 2014

The University Press Roundup Manifesto: A #UPWeek 2014 Blog Tour Post

It’s the final day of University Press Week 2014! All week long university presses have been participating in the UP Week Blog Tour. We are thrilled to participate, and excited about today’s blog post theme: Follow Friday.

Make sure you check out the other presses posting today: University of Illinois Press, University of Minnesota Press, University of Nebraska Press, NYU Press, and Island Press!

The University Press Roundup Manifesto

One of the most popular and longest-running series of posts on the Columbia University Press blog is our weekly University Press Roundup, a list of links to interesting posts from the blogs of other academic publishers. The Roundup is also an exceptionally enjoyable post to write. It’s hard to go wrong with a morning spent reading through articles from our ever-growing list of scholarly publishing blogs and explaining the most interesting ones. But in addition to the fun we have writing it (and, we hope, that others have reading it), the Roundup has a more serious raison d’etre: by showing the diversity and quality of posts on academic publishing blogs, we hope to help demonstrate the role of university presses in bringing scholarly conversations into the public sphere, and to show that this facilitation happens through the blogs of scholarly publishers as well as through our books. (more…)

Monday, November 10th, 2014

University Press Week Begins!

University Press Week

Today kicks off the beginning of University Press Week! The slogan for this year’s celebration is “Great Minds Don’t Think Alike,” and the week-long focus on university presses includes book giveaways; an online discussion about the future of scholarly publishing; a collaborative projects gallery featuring 79 fascinating examples of how collaboration can succeed in scholarly communications; and a blog tour.

Today’s blog posts focus on the theme of collaboration and include posts from the following university presses: University of California Press, University of Chicago Press, University Press of Colorado, Duke University Press, University of Georgia Press, Project MUSE/Johns Hopkins University Press, McGill-Queen’s University Press, Texas A&M University Press, University of Virginia Press, Yale University Press.

Friday, November 7th, 2014

University Press Roundup

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

Ebola has dominated the public discourse about public health of late, but as Emily Monosson explains in a post at Island Press Field Notes, we shouldn’t let immediate concerns about that particular virus blind us to the lessons that other illnesses can teach us about vaccination and disease control.

The claim that a country must defend itself from an enemy using mercenary troops is one of the most effective ways to take the moral high ground and to win popular support for military action, as we’ve seen in the recent conflict in Ukraine, where both sides have accused the other of employing mercenaries. In a fascinating post at the OUPblog, James Pattison takes a close look at the morality of employing mercenaries and of actually being a mercenary.

At the UNC Press Blog, Michael Barkun discusses “reverse transparency” in America. He argues that, due primarily to “the pressure of homeland security concerns,” transparency increasingly applies to individuals rather than to large organizations.

Are the very wealthy wielding an undue amount of influence in today’s political landscape? In an Election Day post at Beacon Broadside, Linda McQuaig and Neil Brooks claim that, through campaign financing, lobbying groups, and media campaigns, billionaires have dictated a large portion of American domestic policies in recent years.

At the University of Nebraska Press Blog, Yaakov Lappin discusses the importance of the internet to the continuation, organization, and growth of the Islamist-jihad movement in the 21st century. In particular, he claims that the internet played a crucial role in “[t]he dramatic and rapid takeover of large swaths of Iraq and Syria by Islamic State forces.”

Cindy I-Fen Cheng argues in a post at From the Square, the blog of NYU Press that, while much has been made of the lack of diversity in Silicon Valley, much less has been written about one of the most troubling aspects of this problem: “wage disparities [in the tech industry] based on race and gender.” Though Asian Americans are well-represented in most tech firms, they are paid significantly less on average for doing similar jobs.

“Empty labor,” according to Roland Paulsen, refers to the hours each day modern office workers spend on private internet use during working hours. In a Q&A at fifteeneightyfour, the blog of Cambridge University Press, Paulsen discusses different kinds of empty labor, talks about why he studies it, and claims that “empty labor should be analyzed in the light of the enormous gains in productivity that we’ve seen since the industrialization.”

“Understanding criticism, whether as a giver or receiver, can become a significant asset toward your personal success as a manager or an employee in just about any field or organization.” At the AMACOM Books Blog, Deb Bright has a helpful two-part post on the best ways to give and take criticism in a work environment.

Going to the beach is a much-loved summer pastime in America, but, as Orrin Pilkey and J. Andrew G. Cooper explain in a Q&A at the Duke University Press Blog, the very existence of beaches in many parts of the country (particularly in Florida) is threatened by a combination of pollution, beach mining and coastal engineering, and climate change.

“In only four decades, Phoenix, Arizona, grew from a town of sixty-five thousand to the sixth largest city in America.” At the Princeton University Press Blog, Andrew Needham tells the story of how his book on changes in the electric and natural resource needs of Phoenix during that period of growth turned into a story of the underlying history of climate change.

Finally, we’ll wrap things up this week with a fun post from the Stanford University Press Blog: “7 Things You Didn’t Know About ¡Tequila!” Marie Sarita Gaytán explains that worms do not belong in tequila bottles, that Pancho Villa did not drink tequila, and that salt and lime were originally used to mask the taste of bad tequila, among other fun facts.

Thanks again for reading this week’s roundup! Have a great weekend, and leave any thoughts in the comments!

Friday, October 24th, 2014

University Press Blog Roundup: From Antarctic Cuisine to Zombies

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our roundup of posts from the world of university press blogs:

Jefferey A. Krames discusses his new book Lead with Humility: Lessons from Pope Francis. (AMACOM Books Blog)

Michael Patrick McDonald, author of All Souls: A Family Story from Southie, on Whitey Bulger, Boston Busing, and Southie’s Lost Generation. (Beacon Press)

The University of California Press announces plans to roll out two open access products. (University of California Press)

… And another university press announces the creation of a unit dedicated to Open Access publishing. (Cambridge University Press)

Meanwhile, Matthew Cockerill asks has open access failed? (Oxford University Press)

The Carrot and the Candy Bar, an excerpt from Packaged Pleasures: How Technology and Marketing Revolutionized Desire, by Gary Cross and Robert N. Proctor. (The University of Chicago Press)

An interview with the new editors of French Historical Studies. (Duke University Press)

Why wait? A holiday gift guide. (University Press of Florida)

A symposium on the future of publishing in the humanities and social sciences. (Georgetown University Press)

An appreciation of the monarch butterfly and restoring the monarchy to Cabin John. (Island Press)

Zombie Week will include Edward Comentale and Aaron Jaffe discussing The Year’s Work at the Zombie Research Center. (Indiana University Press)


Friday, September 19th, 2014

University Press Roundup: Zombies, Domestic Violence, Blimps, Big Pharma, David Lynch, and More from UP Blogs!

University Press Roundup

Behind the Book with Ummni Khan: The author of Vicarious Kinks: S/M in the Socio-Legal Imaginary discusses the book and its challenge to the myth of law as an objective adjudicator of sexual truth. (University of Toronto Press)

Your Rugged Preamble: The nation’s founding document, as imagined by the midcentury American imagination. (Stanford University Press)

Under the knife with a zombie: Tim Verstynen and Bradley Voytek authors of Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep: A Neuroscientific View of the Zombie Brain explain the nature of the relationship between the brain and emotions in the following video (Princeton University Press):


Friday, September 12th, 2014

Fracking, The Wire, Zombies, Why It’s Good to Be Good and More from University Presses

University Press Round Up

Our weekly round up of some of the best posts from the world of university press blogs:

Andrew Cuomo and the Future of Fracking: Tuesday’s gubernatorial primary in New York state was, in part, a referendum on Andrew Cuomo’s policy on fracking. (Beacon Broadside)

The Crossroads of Fate and Character: An interview with Mark Richardson, author of Robert Frost in Context. Richardson argues says there will always be a place in this world for poetry as long as humans continue to be their imperfect selves. (Cambridge University Press)

Linda Williams on The Wire: While some celebrate the novelistic quality of The Wire, Williams argues that it’s necessary to appreciate the show’s more conventional characteristics: seriality, televisuality and melodrama. (Duke University Press)

Beyond the White Negro: An interview with Kimberly Chabot Davis, author of Beyond the White Negro: Empathy and Anti-Racist Reading. (University of Illinois Press)

From Paper Piles to Pages: On being an intern in the production department (Island Press)


Friday, September 5th, 2014

University Press Blog Round Up: Rock n Roll, Cooking with Publishers, the Surprisingly Funny Middle Ages, and More!

University Press Roundup

Our weekly list of some of the most compelling posts (and videos!) from the wide world of university press blogs:

Greil Marcus on the ten songs that define rock n roll history. (Yale University Press)

Natalie Fingerhut, history editor at the University of Toronto Press, on what she learned while editing The Assassination of Europe, 1918-1942: A Political History and why reading history matters.

Stanford University Press provides a very inventive and handy flowchart to navigate their Fall 2014 offerings.

Back in the Day! Princeton University Press continues its excellent Throwback Thursday with a look back at The Munich Secession: Art and Artists in Turn-of-the-Century Munich by Martha Makela.

Rebecca J. Cook, editor of Abortion Law in Transnational Perspective: Cases and Controversies, outlines the book’s contents in which legal scholars from different parts of the world analyze recent cases and controversies and how ideas are changing the way abortion is legally advocated, regulated, and adjudicated.

John H. McWhorter asks, How does color affect our way of seeing the world? (Oxford University Press)


Friday, August 29th, 2014

University Press Blog Round Up: Ferguson, Social Networking, The Physics of Cocktails, and More!

University Press Round Up

Before heading off to the beach, read up on some of the excellent posts from university press blogs from the week that was:

Jeanne Theoharis explores the connection between the recent protests in Ferguson and the history and legacy of Rosa Parks. (Beacon Broadside)

While, Eric Allen Hall considers the protests in light of the life of Arthur Ashe in his essay Open Tennis and Open Minds: What Arthur Ashe Can Teach Us All. (Johns Hopkins University Press)

Jelani Cobb’s offers an impassioned and thoughtful essay on Ferguson in light of the history of lynching. (NYU Press)

In an interview with Tony Hay, author of The Computing Universe: A Journey Through a Revolution, discusses a variety of issues including artificial intelligence, cyberwarfare, and the uncertain future of our increasingly digital world. (Cambridge University Press)

Five minutes with Branden Hookway, in which he answers questions about his book, Interface and the interfaces we encounter daily. (MIT Press)

Is Facebook for friends or is it for marketers? Robert Gehl, author of Reverse Engineering Social Media, writes about the alternatives to Facebook. (Temple University Press)

Allan Barsky explores the ethics of social networking in social work. (Oxford University Press)

A celebration of the just-announced Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction winners. (University of Georgia Press)


Friday, August 15th, 2014

University Press Roundup: Ferguson, Unshark Week, Fighting Inequality and More!

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

We Americans, or at least this American, tend not to think of Canada as a bellicose nation but as the University of Toronto Press Publishing Blog points out, the Canadian Army did join forces with the rest of the British Empire during World War I.

The decline of the Protestant establishment in Philadelphia is discussed on North Philly Notes (Temple University Press) in their interview with Dan Rottenberg, author of The Outsider: Albert M. Greenfield and the Fall of the Protestant Establishment.

David Grusky takes a closer look at the inequality research machine on the Stanford University Press blog.

Sure, shark week gets all the attention but there is also unshark week. Never heard of it? Well, head over to the Princeton University Press blog and let Steve and Tony Palumbi, authors of The Extreme Life of the Sea explain.

In her essay “Externalizing Internal Explosions” on the University of Pennsylvania Press blog, Cathy Lisa Schneider, author of Police Power and Race Riots: Urban Unrest in Paris and New York, examines recent events in Ferguson, Missouri.

What are the role of families in fighting poverty? In this excellent video, Clare Huntington, author of Failure to Flourish published by Oxford University Press, discusses the importance of investing in families as a strategy for fighting poverty.

Colum Kenny explains how he came to write An Irish-American Odyssey: The Remarkable Rise of the O’Shaughnessy Brothers, just published by the University of Missouri Press.


Friday, August 1st, 2014

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

The Association of American University Presses released a statement this week in support of net neutrality. Citing the mission of scholarly presses everywhere toward the preservation, advancement, and dissemination of scholarship, the AAUP asserts a principle reliance on the Internet and “open, neutral public network access to the online content and services of libraries, institutions of higher learning, and publishers small and large.”
At The Beacon Broadside, Frederick Lane examines the growing presence of “nullification” in American politics. He cites resistance to federal gun laws in some states as well as the recent Supreme Court case involving Hobby Lobby and the company’s protest of a requirement under the Affordable Care Act that female employees be given access to certain contraceptives that the owners believe act as abortifacients.

The University of California Press blog has a great video about the history of theatrical reissues of films in the age before television and video. The video features Eric Hoyt, author of Hollywood Vault: Film Libraries before Home Video.

The surprisingly important role that Italy played in the Cold War is considered in an interview with Kaeten Mistry, author of The United States, Italy and the Origins of Cold War: Waging Political Warfare on the Cambridge University Press blog.

On the one hundredth anniversary of Word War I, the University of Chicago Press blog features an excerpt from their book War’s Waste: Rehabilitation in World War I America by Beth Linker. The excerpt contextualizes the relationship between rehabilitation and the progressive reformers who pushed for it as a means to “rebuild” the disabled and regenerate the American medical industry.

In another WW-I related post, Marian Moser Jones, author of The American Red Cross from Clara Barton to the New Deal, asks the more basic question why should Americans care at all about the World War I Centennial? (via the Johns Hopkins University Press blog)

Speaking of one hundredth anniversaries, the Duke University Press blog features a post by Robert A. Hill, editor-in-chief of The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, who looks back at the 100-year anniversary of the founding of Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League.

The Harvard University Press blog examines the American Association of University Press’s recent statement in support of net neutrality.


Friday, July 18th, 2014

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

The issue of tenure for teachers has been hotly contested recently. Writing at the Voices in Education blog of Harvard Education Publishing, Dale S. Rose argues that improving teacher hiring processes is a better bet for improving education quality than is eliminating teacher tenure.

Jacques Derrida would have turned 84 this past Tuesday, and in honor of the occasion, Cary Wolfe has an article up at the University of Minnesota Press Blog reflecting on Derrida’s legacy and the continuing resonance of his work.

Is new film Maleficent a feminist fairy tale? At From the Square, the blog of NYU Press, Jessie Klein and Meredith Finnerty argue that the movie attempts to “reverse the damage of the common fairy tale motif.”

The 2014 World Cup is now over (congratulations to our German readers), and at the University of Toronto Press Blog, Kirk Bowman provides a post-tournament summary of the politics and identity issues at play in the world’s most popular sporting event.

This week, the OUPblog is running a fascinating four-part series of posts on the epistemology of Christianity, by John G. Stackhouse, Jr. Stackhouse is particularly interested in the interplay between radical faith and radical doubt in the modern “Information Age.”

At the Harvard University Press Blog, Daniel Matlin looks back at a key figure in the attempts by African American intellectuals to help white America understand and appreciate black urban life: psychologist Kenneth B. Clark.

How should we view the place of religion in Rembrandt’s art? At Mercer University Press News, John I. Durham has a guest post explaining the role of faith in Rembrandt’s life and work, and argues that for Rembrandt, The Bible was “a real book more than it was a holy book.”

World War I had a profound impact on literary culture, and in particular on poetry. At the temporarily renamed nineteenfourteen blog of Cambridge University Press (usually fifteeneightyfour), Paul Sheehan looks at the role of pity and pathos in World War I poetry.

Most people view Harvey Milk’s lasting political influence primarily through the lens of his work with LGBT progress. However, at North Philly Notes, the blog of Temple University Press, Miriam Frank claims that this ignores a significant part of Milk’s platform: his vision was one of connected union involvement and LGBT activism.

Those who love air conditioning in the summer take note: July 17 marks the birthday of air conditioning! At the Fordham Impressions blog, Salvatore Basile has a guest post looking at the early history of air conditioning and questioning its future in a “green” society.

Want to write an epitaph but just don’t know how? Fear not! Michael Wolfe, writing at the JHU Press Blog, has broken the epitaph-writing process down to it’s simplest components. Once you’ve mastered the art of the epitaph, he invites you to enter his “epitaph writing contest” on Goodreads!

Finally, we’ll wrap things up this week with a guest post by essayist Sam Pickering (perhaps best known for being the inspiration for Robin Williams’ innovative teacher character in the film Dead Poets Society) at the University of Missouri Press blog. In his post, Pickering ruminates about a life of writing essays about life.

Thanks again for reading this week’s roundup! Have a great weekend, and leave any thoughts in the comments!

Friday, July 11th, 2014

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

Religious freedom and what it entails has been at the forefront of the American consciousness over the last few weeks, as the Supreme Court has considered two important religious freedom cases. In both Burwell v. Hobby Lobby and Wheaton College v. Burwell, the Supreme Court decided “in favor of conservative Christian plaintiffs seeking exemptions from the contraceptive coverage mandate of the Affordable Care Act.” This week, the Chicago Blog of the University of Chicago Press featured an article by Winnifred Fallers Sullivan on the “rotten core at the heart of all religious freedom laws”: what she calls the difference between “small ‘r’ religion” and “big ‘R’ Religion.” In explaining this difference, Sullivan demands that we consider what religious freedom is really designed to protect.

Another important recent Supreme Court case was Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, in which the Court upheld Michigan’s ban on race- and sex-based affirmative action in public hiring and education. Writing at the UNC Press Blog, Marc Stein discusses the case, and in particular the divide between the opinions written by Associate Justice Sonya Sotomayor and Chief Justice John Roberts.

The World Cup is drawing to a close, with only the third place game and the Final still to be played. Duke University Press has continued their series on the Cup with a couple of fascinating posts from Orin Starn and Marc Hertzman. Starn is watching the games from “a shantytown in desert Peru,” and he explains how the World Cup both isn’t (“There’s little pan-Latin American solidarity in football fandom”) and is (the Neymar-style haircuts of some of the children, for example) a big deal in the poor areas of Peru. Meanwhile, Hertzman focuses instead on the gender issues at play in Brazil at the moment. One notable example: while the aforementioned Neymar got the great majority of the press as the best Brazilian player, Hertzman points out that the most decorated current Brazilian player has not been mentioned much at all. Marta is the star of Brazil’s women’s team, and has “on or finished second as FIFA’s women’s Player of the Year an amazing nine times.”

While the World Cup has, once again, been a wildly popular spectacle, Susan Kneebone points out that it has also put the spotlight firmly on the problematic preparations for the 2022 World Cup scheduled to take place in Qatar. Writing at the OUPblog, Kneebone looks at the plight and frequent mistreatment of the estimated 500,000 migrant workers Qatar is depending on to build the infrastructure necessary for the World Cup to take place. She is particularly careful to point out that this dependency on migrant workers is not unique to Qatar during their preparations, but that it is a fairly common practice throughout the Gulf States region, and, indeed, throughout the world.

At the University of Minnesota Press Blog, Eric Avila argues that, while “freeway and the automobile, after all, were built upon a uniquely American premise of freedom,” the ways that freeways were planned and constructed in cities in the 1950s and 1960s sometimes divided and hurt poor, nonwhite communities, even while offering convenient and ostensibly democratic means of transportation.

How far can ISIS go? At the JHU Press Blog, Mark N. Katz takes a close look at the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, pointing out that, while nobody saw them expanding so quickly, they are encountering three problems common to most revolutionary movements (and these problems are exacerbated by the fact that they did expand so quickly): “1.) regional opposition; 2.) reaction to repression; and 3.) rifts among the radicals.”

“In India’s recent national elections, a single party gained the majority of the seats in the lower house of parliament for the first time since 1984.” The Bharatiya Janata Party that controls that majority, is a consistently Hindu nationalist party, and, at the Stanford University Press Blog, Narendra Subramanian believes that the BJP is likely to “vigorously promote Hindu hegemony” and support unequal economic growth at the expense of the poorer elements of the population, and that these policies “may damage democratic citizenship that much more as the constraints they face are rather weak.”

How did the tradition of sports teams with names referencing Native American culture begin? Using the current furor over the name of the Washington Redskins as a jumping-off point, Kate Buford, in a post at the University of Nebraska Press Blog, looks at the history of Native Americans as team names and mascots. She traces the practice back to the famous football coach Glenn S. “Pop” Warner, whose Carlisle Indian Industrial School football team (the Indians) was hugely successful in the early 1900s, led by Jim Thorpe. Buford also, however, looks at the history of the fight against demeaning sports team names, and in particular the successful 1972 petition by Native American students at Stanford that led to the university changing its mascot from the Indians to the Cardinal.

In 1991, Mount Pinatubo, a volcano located about 90 kilometers from Manila in the Philippines that had not been thought of as active, produced the largest volcanic eruption in living memory–the ash from the explosion formed a mushroom cloud that grew to an area the size of France. At the nineteenfourteen blog (the temporarily renamed version of Cambridge University Press’s fifteeneightyfour blog), Clive Oppenheimer writes about the immense eruption and about what its aftermath can teach us about disaster management and climate change.

Finally, we’ll wrap things up this week with an article from Beacon Broadside Press about a very different kind of ecological disaster. Instead of looking at a single moment of environmental trauma like the eruption of Mount Pinatubo, Brad Tyer looks at the history of the Clark Fork, “one of the most badly abused rivers in the United States.” Tyer walks readers through the river’s history, from the harm done by copper mining to the strange industrial accidents that have damaged the river (including multiple Boeing airplane fuselages and harmful collections of chemicals), and warns of the potential for enormous environmental disaster if the contaminated waters of the “Yankee Doodle tailings” above the river were allowed to escape into the river.

Thanks again for reading this week’s roundup! Have a great weekend, and leave any thoughts in the comments!

Friday, June 27th, 2014

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

Last weekend, university presses from around the country convened in New Orleans for AAUP—the yearly conference of the Association of American University Presses. John Hopkins University Press editorial Director Greg Britton shares his thoughts on the event, and provides a few links to additional resources and social media for those curious to know more.

With “football”—or “soccer” in American English—mania now sweeping the nations, Cambridge University Press’s blogpost on the global sport may teach readers a little something about it. From the first international encounter in 1872 Scotland-England to the Brazil 2014 stadiums, football maintains steady position as world’s most popular sport. Evidently the 2010 South African World Cup attracted viewership of 46.4 per cent of the whole world’s population, and with the spike in interest from the USA , who knows how much this percentage has increased for this 2014 Brazil World Cup? (Our chunk of the world population pie is clearly BIGGER and BETTER. USA!) The excerpt celebrates the local tribalism of the sport, its drama, its elegant simplicity, and its international appeal. Take a look here.

Speaking of soccer, tribalism, and the World Cup, Duke University Press’s Seth Garfield, author of Indigenous Struggle at the Heart of Brazil, reflects on his last experience in Brazil during a World Cup. He’s writing, of course, about 1994, during which he found himself a welcomed participant in a native Xavante song and dance celebration. Garfield juxtaposes the past with the present—indigenous history with globalization and industrialization—citing the cultural preservation of Xavante life against a backdrop of abandoned agribusiness offices. His recollection is somewhat bittersweet, complicated further by the natives’ cause for celebration—a Brazilian victory in the World Cup.

In an instance of academic publishing getting the “scoop” before newspaper headlines, Beacon Broadside’s blogpost by Fran Hawthorne on the founder and CEO of American Apparel Dov Charney reveals that his ethical misconduct was known long before the story made newspaper headlines. In her book Ethical Chic: The Inside Story of Companies We Think We Love (March 2013), Hawthorne argued, “To earn a social-responsibility badge, American Apparel would have to take a major step: dump Charney.” Thankfully, the company heeded her recommendation.

Contrary to Barbara Tuchman’s claim that August 1914 was the formative month in First World War history, historian Gordon Martel pushes the date earlier to July 1914 in his book The Month That Changed the World: July 1914. His blog post, however, narrates the events of Saturday, 27 June 1914, the day preceding Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s assassination and provide s grounding historical context. Archduke Ferdinand paid visit to Sarajevo with his wife Sophie meant to glorify Austrian rule. Hindsight colors the narration with irony: “The royal couple remained blissfully unaware that they had almost come face-to-face with the young Serb who was planning to kill the archduke the next day.”

On a historical note, Yale University Press’s post on public speaking master class from Winston Churchill divulges the key ingredients for great oration: Diction, rhythm, accumulation, analogy, and extravagance are all necessary. Jonathan Rose translates Churchill as a literary figure, who was an inspirational and hugely charismatic rhetorician. Who better to take oration lessons from?

“At the end of the day, oral history is complimented by technology,” says OUP author Juliana Nykolaiszyn. Besides her status as a self-proclaimed technology geek, Nykolaiszyn also works as an oral historian, interviewing subjects and recording the exchange for preservation and research. Google Glass, she reveals, may be the next remarkable technology to emerge in the evolution of the field. In her post, Nykolaiszyn details some of the draws of Google Glass and other products that promote more seamless interaction between people, and also touches their potential drawbacks.

Thanks again for reading this week’s roundup! Have a great weekend, and leave any thoughts in the comments!

Friday, June 20th, 2014

University Press Roundup

Welcome to our weekly roundup of the best articles from the blogs of academic publishers! As always, if you particularly enjoy something or think that we missed an important post, please let us know in the comments.

We’d like to open this week’s Roundup by saying congratulations to our neighbors Fordham University Press, new FUP Editorial Director Richard Morrison, and new FUP Editor Thomas Lay! Best of luck moving forward!

The University of Nebraska Press blog has a couple of fascinating posts up this week: one by C. Richard King on the future of the team name of the Washington Redskins, and one by UNP Marketing Manager Martyn Beeny discussing whether BEA is a worthwhile investment for University Presses. In King’s post, he looks at the recent ruling by the U.S. Trademark and Patent Office Trademark Trial Appeal Board voiding trademarks associated with the Redskins NFL franchise on the grounds that the name is “disparaging,” calls out the media for burying the actual Native Americans involved in the issue behind the intricacies of the legal case, and predicts where the saga might go in the future. Meanwhile, Beeny takes a hard look at the ever-increasing costs of setting up a booth at BEA, mourns the demise of the true “University Press Row,” and calls for UPs and the BEA to work together to allow all university presses to once again take advantage of the intrinsic benefits of attending the trade show in the Javits Center.

The sectarian violence that has erupted throughout north and west Iraq recently has set off a new round of questions in the media about American responsibility for the reemergence of civil war, and about America’s role in the region going forward. The Harvard University Blog has an excellent excerpt from the as-yet-unpublished Overreach: Delusions of Regime Change in Iraq, in which author Michael MacDonald “details how America’s fallacious equation of its ideals with its interests—and global projection of each—led to this unleashing of chaos with no end in sight.” (Also, HUP made a Thomas Piketty cake, which we can’t help but mention here, apropos of nothing.)

The World Cup is in full swing, and at the JHU Press blog, John Eric Goff takes on one of the most fundamental parts of the game: the makeup of the ball itself. After Adidas, the company responsible for providing the balls for the Cup, was inundated with player complaints about Jabulani ball used four years ago in South Africa, there has been much less backlash against the new Brazuca ball. Goff explains that the ball behaves more normally due to the intentional texturing of the ball and the 68% longer “total seam length,” which gives the ball a “more stable trajectory” than that of the Jabulani.

Do tenure laws protect bad teachers at the expense of poor and minority students? Judge Rolf M. Treu of Los Angeles recently ruled that they do in the case Vergara v. California, but Fran Hawthorne, writing at Beacon Broadside, argues that Treu “is trying to use a sledgehammer to repair a broken necklace. No, even worse: He has aimed his sledgehammer at a necklace, when it’s really a bracelet, brooch, and earrings that are broken.” She argues that tenure is crucial for attracting and keeping inspiring teachers, who are increasingly getting left out in the cold in the war against the phantom of “bad” teachers.