JHU Press Blog

Analyzing Merle Haggard

by bjs | Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 10:00 AM

The Fall 2018 issue of American Imago featured a pair of articles with a unique focus for the renowned psychoanalysis journal – country musician Merle Haggard.

Richard Wheeler , a retired Shakespeare scholar from University of Illinois who currently serves as Senior Advisor with Academic Analytics, submitted an essay for the Silberger Paper Prize at our Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute. The essay “ A Place to Fall Apart: Merle Haggard's Music ” won the award, which includes publication in American Imago.

Journal editor Murray Schwartz was part of a team which awarded the prize, and Howard M. Katz agreed to respond to Wheeler’s paper due to his interest in music and human development. Katz, who is a Training and Supervising Psychoanalyst at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute and Lecturer in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, published “ Music, Bonding, and Personal Growth: Merle Haggard's Musical Journey toward Wholeness. Discussion of "A Place to Fall Apart, A Reading of Merle Haggard's Music " by Richard P. Wheeler.”

With coordination from Schwartz, Wheeler and Katz agreed to participate in a Q&A about their articles on...Read More

Under the Big Tree: Extraordinary Stories from the Movement to End Neglected Tropical Diseases

by eea | Thursday, December 20, 2018 - 12:00 PM

Under the Big Tree: Extraordinary Stories from the Movement to End Neglected Tropical Diseases is a collection of stories about neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), a group of bacterial and parasitic diseases that affect the world’s 1.5 billion poorest people. Previously, literature on NTDs consisted largely of textbooks, academic papers, and research articles. But engaging more people, from a greater variety of sectors, is helping to lift the burden of NTDs. The book’s purpose is to raise awareness—and to highlight some surprising, inspiring stories about this pivotal moment in which global collaboration, together with greater funding, technological advancements, and historic drug donations, are bringing an end to these diseases. Many countries have eliminated NTDs as a public health problem. However, many more disease-endemic countries remain, primarily in Africa. These countries and the five most prevalent NTDs , (trachoma, schistosomiasis, river blindness, lymphatic filariasis, and intestinal worms, e.g., hookworm), are the focus of Under the Big Tree . At the heart of the book are stories, drawn from hundreds of conversations and interviews with men and women engaged on every side of this monumental worldwide movement.

The reader meets Mwele Malecela, who launched...Read More

The Theory and Craft of Digital Preservation: Q&A with author Trevor Owens

by eea | Wednesday, December 19, 2018 - 4:00 PM

Why did you decide to write The Theory and Craft of Digital Preservation ?

I’ve spent the last decade working on ensuring long-term access to digital information. Over that time I’ve been frustrated by the ways that digital preservation is conceived of discussed. It often sounds like digital preservation is somehow a technical problem that we can just solve with some new app. Or similarly that digital preservation is some kind of sophisticated technical issue for experts. I decided to write this book because I wanted to lay out how anyone can get started in digital preservation today and how doing digital preservation work is a direct continuation of the professional practices in history, folklore, libraries, archives, and museums which provides us with access to our cultural heritage.

What were some of the most surprising things you learned while writing and researching the book?

We often think of a dichotomy between digital media and an analog past. In reviewing work on the history of preservation I’ve been struck by the extent to which libraries, archives, and museums have been leaders in managing the results of media innovation throughout their history....Read More

Diabetes Head to Toe: Q&A with the Authors

by eea | Tuesday, December 18, 2018 - 4:00 PM

Why did you decide to write Diabetes Head to Toe ?

Diabetes is not a one-size-fits-all disease. There are different types of diabetes and a wide range of complications—head to toe—that may develop. Not everyone benefits from the same treatments. Health care providers may be limited, for a variety of reasons, to relay all the critical information needed for people with diabetes to confidently self-manage their disease at home. In this book, we provide up-to-date information based on the latest evidence in an easily accessible format. The goal of the content we write is to educate people with diabetes and their caregivers about recognizing the early warning signs—before they develop—so that diabetes-related difficulties can be prevented in the future.

What were some of the most surprising things you learned while writing and researching the book?

We were surprised at how little information is currently available for patients on other conditions that commonly occur in people with diabetes—such as liver disease, bone disease, skin conditions, and sexual problems—but is undoubtedly important to the day-to-day life of a person with diabetes. We were also...Read More

Cork Wars: Films Introduce a Story of Nature and Business in War

by eea | Friday, December 14, 2018 - 12:00 PM

As a writer, it’s rare to feel that a story is destined for you. I felt that way with my first book, Ginseng, the Divine Root , about forests and a secretive subculture around a medicinal plant from American forests that for over two centuries has been exported to Asia.

Years later in a library, I stumbled on an article about a tree-planting campaign during World War II. Americans were planting millions of cork oak trees from coast to coast, with the idea they could save the country. Cork wasn’t native to North America, but people considered it important. How could tree-planting help win a war?

What really stuck with me was when I talked with a person involved in the campaign. Charles McManus Jr. was 96 years old when we met, very sharp. We sat in the empty ballroom of his retirement community outside Baltimore and he said two things that captivated me. First, he described an otherworldly scene of cork harvests in Portugal. Back in his 20s, McManus had visited Portugal with his father, and the traditional harvest – the skilled workers peeling the thick cork bark from the trees -- was magical.

The second...Read More

Before and After Loss: A Neurologist’s Perspective on Loss, Grief and the Brain

by eea | Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - 12:00 PM

Loss is traumatic.

It wasn’t until I experienced my husband’s death that I learned how disorienting, harrowing and perilous it is to lose people close to us. To lose something that is simply basic to who we are and how we make sense of our lives.

As a practicing neurologist, I thought I was prepared. But instead, I struggled. It took many months until I had a flash of insight- for the first time I saw my experience through the eyes of a neurologist. I realized that the problem wasn’t sorrow, it was a fog of confusion , disorientation , and delusions of magical thinking. This insight spurred me to study how loss affects the brain, and what I learned about emotional trauma became the basis for Before and After Loss: A Neurologist’s Perspective on Loss, Grief and Our Brain .

For people experiencing loss, I believe demystifying the experience is an important step toward healing. When we think about brain trauma, we usually think about physical injury. But we now understand that the emotional trauma of loss has profound effects on the mind, brain, and body. An especially pronounced example...Read More

A Legacy of Usable Scholarship

by bjs | Monday, December 10, 2018 - 10:00 AM

Since 1938, the College English Association has served academics who seek to keep teaching college students as the focus of the profession. Its official publication, The CEA Critic , recently published a double issue commemorating its 80th anniversary with content from the history of the journal.

The issue includes essays from Willa Cather, H.L. Mencken, Pearl Buck, Wallace Stevens, Phillip K. Dick, Margaret Atwood, John Updike and many others. Editor Jeri Craver joined us for a lively discussion about the double issue and the journal's place in the field.

Audio titled Jeri Kraver, The CEA Critic

Since 1938, the College English Association has served academics who seek to keep teaching college students as the focus of the profession. Its official publication, the CEA Critic, recently published a double issue commemorating its 80th anniversary with content from the history of the journal.

The issue includes essays from Willa Cather, H.L. Mencken, Pearl Buck, Wallace Stevens, Phillip K. Dick, Margaret Atwood, John Updike and many others. Editor Jeri Craver joined us for a lively discussion about the social issue and the journal's place in the field.

Read More

A New Angle on Asian Social Mobility

by bjs | Wednesday, December 5, 2018 - 10:00 AM

Scholars have studied the topic of social mobility for Asian Americans for years. But a collection of essays in the most recent issue of the Journal of Asian American Studies took a special look at the topic, said journal editor Rick Bonus. He joined us for a quick Q&A on the issue , which wrapped up the journal's 21st volume.

How did this collection of essays come together?

This collection of essays came together quite serendipitously. Like all other incoming editors, I presume, I had several submissions already brewing on the burner, so to speak, when I stepped on board. So when the staff and I were putting things together, there was no grand design that was on our minds. We put them together, and then, after I read them over and over, certain themes come up. And “social mobility” rose to the top so unquestionably and rather clearly. I was quite delighted!

What surprised you the most from the submissions you received?

“Social mobility” as a topic in Asian American studies is as old as the field itself. But the essays in this volume...Read More

Adapting to the Importance of the Student Misconduct Investigation

by eea | Friday, November 30, 2018 - 12:00 PM

For colleges and universities, investigating discrimination, harassment, academic dishonesty, and other forms of wrongdoing that undermine the institution’s mission and academic programs has become nothing less than a critical preliminary step in support of disciplinary and/or corrective action. Whether campus leaders are confronted with managing the aftermath of an active shooter incident, sorting through allegations regarding a student-on-student sexual assault, or determining the extent to which provisions within the student handbook or code of conduct may have been violated, post-secondary institutions are subject to increasing scrutiny through a range of lawsuits in state and federal courts and in the court of public opinion. In the face of such scrutiny, the challenge for student misconduct investigations center on executing sound and reliable processes that separate fact from fiction, and truth from falsehoods, without ignoring the legitimate opportunities to restore students in favor of punitive action.

On almost a weekly basis, the systems and processes used among institutions of higher education to investigate troubling incidents regarding student conduct are being tested. For instance, consider the plight of a black student at Yale University who may have been subjected to racial profiling by a report from a white student to police that...Read More

Take One Step Forward – Building Local and Regional Food Systems

by eea | Thursday, November 29, 2018 - 12:00 PM

Wendell Berry has inspired millions of farmers and farm advocates with his assertion that “eating is an agricultural act.” Food advocates and activists today are taking that further and showing that eating is also a political act. We can reclaim personal agency and power from the dominant system of corporate food production, by building and supporting local and regional food systems that give us choices about the kind of food we eat, where it comes from, and whose prosperity our food dollars help to create.

It is well-documented that local sales put more money in the farmer’s pocket. When farmers and food producers do well, they create local jobs, generate local taxes, and reinvest their proceeds in services they buy from others in our community. Local money recirculating in local communities contributes to both community self-reliance and sustainability. It’s kind of like the old rural tradition of barn-raising or the not-quite-so-old urban tradition of rent parties, except easier and with more in it for us.

Surveys and studies show that farmers selling directly to consumers retain from 40 percent to as much as 75 percent of the food dollar, versus just 15.6 percent in the corporate food chain....Read More