JHU Press Blog

Acquiring Journals: A Q&A with Journals Publisher Bill Breichner

by bjs | Friday, September 21, 2012 - 10:05 AM

The Journals Division recently announced the addition of three journals to the JHUP catalog. We took this opportunity to sit down with Bill Breichner, Journals Publisher, to take a look at the overall picture of bringing new journals to the Press. The announcement each year of new acquisitions must be an important moment for the Press. Is it a relief to finalize all the work which goes into these new titles? I would characterize it as satisfying more than a relief. It also starts the arduous process of integrating the new titles into the program. That’s really when the heavy lifting begins and the Press is fortunate to have such an outstanding Journals staff. But getting back to the original question, growing the program is critical and that process becomes more challenging. The pool of available, quality journals is dwindling and for those that remain, there is much more competition. So yeah, now that I think of it, there is some relief especially since adding titles shows up on my performance review each year! Each of the three journals added for 2013 ( Classical World , Leviathan , and The CEA Critic...Read More

September news and new books

by cmt | Monday, September 10, 2012 - 2:11 PM

News and Notes

Hurricane Isaac may have forced the cancellation of last week’s Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association (APSA), but that didn’t stop us from putting together our own APSA Virtual Exhibit Booth ! Garrison Keillor reads X.J. Kennedy’s poem, “Décor,” from Kennedy’s collection In a Prominent Bar in Secaucus in honor of his 83 rd birthday on The Writer’s Almanac .

Hot off the Press

George Washington’s Eye : Based on Washington’s personal diaries and correspondence and accounts of visitors to his estate, this richly illustrated book introduces a George Washington unfamiliar to many readers—an avid art collector, amateur architect, and leading landscape designer of his time. Tapping into The Wire : The Real Urban Crisis : Tapping into 'The Wire' uses the acclaimed television series as a road map for exploring connections between inner-city poverty and drug-related violence. Each chapter recounts scenes from episodes of the HBO series, placing the characters' challenges into the broader context of public policy. ...Read More

Celebrating Feminist Formations

by bjs | Wednesday, September 5, 2012 - 9:54 AM

Tomorrow afternoon in Tucson, AZ, the new editorial team of the JHU Press journal Feminist Formations will hold a celebration to mark the move of the editorial staff to the University of Arizona. Part of the celebration will include a talk from Roxana Galusca , a University of Chicago researcher who contributed an article to the newest issue of the journal . We spoke with her about the milestone for the journal and her research. How excited are you to play an important role in the Feminist Formations celebration? It is a privilege to be part of this celebration. Feminist Formations has had a formative role in my training as a scholar of gender and sexuality and it is a central publication in the field of women’s, gender, and sexuality studies. As someone who truly believes in the unlimited potential of this field of studies, I find this celebration refreshing and I am proud to be part of it. You are speaking about your article “Slave Hunters, Brothel Busters, and Feminist Interventions: Investigative Journalists as Anti-Sex-Trafficking Humanitarians,” which is included in the newest issue of...Read More

Unearthing rare images and unique stories of African American Civil War soldiers

by cmt | Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - 9:14 AM

Guest post by Ronald S. Coddington

After my second book, Faces of the Confederacy , debuted in 2008, colleagues and friends asked me about my next project. I answered that African American soldiers would be the focus of my next volume.

My reply was met with a healthy dose of skepticism.

Two bits of conventional wisdom surfaced in their comments. First, that finding enough wartime photographs of identified soldiers would prove impossible. Second, that the stories of African American soldiers are uninteresting because so few fought in battles.

I can appreciate both points. The individual black experience in the Civil War has been underappreciated. Most Americans today know it through Glory , the movie about the famed Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Infantry and its courageous yet tragic assault on Fort Wagner, or from scant chapters in history books illustrated with the same few photographs of unnamed black men in blue uniforms. Despite the groundbreaking service of roughly 200,000 African Americans in the Union army and navy during the war, the contributions of a far smaller group of Buffalo Soldiers in post-war America enjoy...Read More

The Intersection of Work and Friendship

by bjs | Monday, August 27, 2012 - 11:52 AM

By Janet Gilbert Journals Direct Response and Renewals Senior Coordinator Sometimes, you get to work on a journal you just can’t put down. For me, Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics: A Journal of Qualitative Research (NIB) has been one of those from its inception here at the Press, because of its captivating combination of first-person narratives and substantive research. About a year ago, after reading the journal’s articles on psychiatric hospitalization in preparation for writing some of its marketing materials, I thought, this is where the rubber meets the road in health care —this is where research meets real life; where technology intersects with humanity. This became the essence of the messaging for NIB . And ordinarily, that would just be a work thing—one would compartmentalize it, and move on. But that’s not to be my experience, evidently. NIB published an issue this year on living organ donors and, Carla Hubbard, a co-worker, recently underwent a kidney transplant thanks to a living donor. Thankfully, Carla is home resting now, but I shared her story through a column in The (Baltimore) Sun last week .Read More

How many people does it take to write a bestselling textbook?

by cmt | Wednesday, August 22, 2012 - 11:00 AM

Guest post by Nova J. Silvy

How do you get 119 individuals to work on the same book? It takes professionalism, persistence, and dedication, plus an incredible passion for wildlife. Those 119 people provided expertise for the 37 chapters of the seventh edition of The Wildlife Society’s The Wildlife Techniques Manual . The volumes would not have been completed without the hard work of a huge number of people, and I am deeply grateful to these authors for their chapters, PowerPoint presentations, figures, and sample questions.

Wildlife professionals and students must constantly adapt to new challenges, technologies, and issues. But when does a landmark text need to be revised and what goes into the decision to revise a major textbook? In this case, the decision to reorganize the material and develop a two-volume set was made after major university users of the Techniques Manual were surveyed to determine what chapters they were using in university courses and for what type of courses. The surveys identified two major use areas: (1) courses in wildlife research techniques and (2) courses in wildlife habitat management techniques. Respondents indicated that most wildlife students...Read More

Tales from the assistant's desk: theories of peer review

by cmt | Monday, August 20, 2012 - 10:06 AM

by Jennifer Malat, Acquisitions Assistant Before I started to work in academic publishing, I thought of peer review as that high school English class staple “swap your essay with a classmate for comments.” You look over someone else’s essay, fix some typos, and correct any egregious errors. If more people read your essay, more mistakes would be corrected. Simple, right? But in academia the process is more complicated. Many debates exist regarding the best type of peer review, from anonymous reviewers to open peer review. Does anonymity encourage honesty or hurt open scholarship? “Peer” can also be a tricky definition. If a book combines multiple disciplines, such as history and sociology, should you get reviewers from each field? How many from each? Does the reviewer know the author? Should you solicit reviews from scholars with a similar understanding of the subject, or from those who support an opposing school of thought? What if the author is the leading expert on a topic and nobody wants to question his or her methods? Acquisitions editors put a lot of time and energy into these questions, seeking appropriate and fair reviewers who want to help improve a manuscript. Peer review is a...Read More

August Buzz at JHU Press

by cmt | Friday, August 17, 2012 - 9:44 AM

New to Hit the Shelves

Parrots: The Animal Answer Guide : Have you ever wondered what parrots eat in the wild? Or why so many species live in the Amazon? Glorious photographs and accurate answers to every question about parrots make this a must-have for any bird lover. Vaccine: The Debate in Modern America : Mark A. Largent explains the history of the debate surrounding vaccines and identifies issues that parents, pediatricians, politicians, and public health officials must address. My Lai: An American Atrocity in the Vietnam War : On March 16, 1968, American soldiers killed as many as five hundred Vietnamese men, women, and children in a village near the South China Sea. William Thomas Allison tells the story of this terrible moment in American history and explores how to deal with the aftermath. Getting Inside Your Head: What Cognitive Science Can Tell Us about Popular Culture : Using the psychological concept called theory of mind, Lisa Zunshine explores the appeal of movies, novels, paintings, musicals, and...Read More

The Doctor is In: It's back to school time!

by cmt | Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - 8:00 AM

The Doctor is In is an occasional series where JHU Press authors discuss the latest developments and news in health and medicine. guest post by Lisa Dobberteen, M.D. Summer is the best! Long days, time with family and friends, travel, summer camps, and a little more relaxed flow to life are enjoyed by children and adults alike. But as the beginning of the new school year approaches, here are a few things to keep in mind to help your family ease back into their usual routines: Sleep: let’s get everyone back on their school year schedule Food: fun, easy, and healthy ideas for breakfasts and lunches Carrying books: keeping big and little backs healthy Over the summer, it’s easy for kids to slip into later and later bedtimes, especially if you don’t need to be up and out in the morning to catch the school bus. Take a look at your child's school year schedule, check on start times and bus stop pickups, and then think about how you’d like your morning routines to go. About two weeks before school starts, try to move your child’s bedtime up by 15 minutes every night to get...Read More

Auteur and Editor

by cmt | Monday, August 13, 2012 - 12:28 PM

by Michele Callaghan, Manuscript Editor Part of being married is having to watch your spouse’s favorite films, sometimes over and over, because “you are going to like it this time, I swear!” My husband purchased a DVD a while back of one of his favorites, The Man Who Fell to Earth by acclaimed director Nicolas Roeg, and we watched it for the umpteenth time. About halfway through, we realized that the pacing was slower and that there were scenes with bizarre elements that we had never noticed before. We looked at the box and realized that we had purchased the unrated director’s cut. Another time we were curious about Nicholas Cage’s Academy Award–winning performance in Leaving Las Vegas and rented the director’s cut from our local video store . After a ten-minute scene with the main character sitting on the curb yelling at someone, we decided to swear off director’s cuts for life! What does this have to do with my chosen profession of editing books? I would say, an awful lot. What it tells me is that the creator of a given project—whether it be a movie,...Read More