Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Show & Tell

Welcome to Show & Tell, an occasional feature that will highlight images that offer revealing glimpses into the Press: its books, its authors, its readership, and more. Click on each image for a more detailed view.

Poet Mark McMorris, author of THE BLAZE OF THE POUI, recently did a reading at the Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. Val Lucas, an area artist, produced a broadside for the event. Letterpress printing is just one of Lucas's mediums. You can see the old Colt's Armory press that she restored, and samples of her work at McMorris shared the stage—and the broadside—with Cathy Eisenhower.

Mary Frances Broach Woodside is the grandaughter of Mrs. S. R. Dull, the longtime cooking columnist for the Atlanta Journal and author of the classic cookbook SOUTHERN COOKING. Mrs. Woodside and her son, Jim Holmes, stopped by our offices to give us to a look at her grandmother's personal copy of SOUTHERN COOKING. It was just what you'd hope to see: broken at the spine, foodstained, and filled with handwritten notes and clippings. Mrs. Woodside is holding her treasured original copy; Mr. Holmes is holding our reissued edition.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Louisiana Governor's Race As a Cultural Moment

We really can't say that Jim Peacock foretold Bobby Jindal's gubernatorial victory in his book GROUNDED GLOBALISM. Still, Peacock's observations about how local cultures and the global economy reverberate against each other in mutually sustaining and energizing ways seem downright prescient when applied to the Jindal story. If you want to better understand the changes that opened up the possibility that a child of immigrants from India could become governor of a Deep South state, get a copy of GROUNDED GLOBALISM.

In the days ahead, we will pass along the best of what may be said and written about Jindal's win as an instructive cultural moment. Much of what is out there right now understandably has a political focus. However, read this commentary, in a blog sponsored by Talking Points Memo, as just one example of how the cultural story is trying to break through.

Reading the Indian media's coverage of Jindal's victory is fascinating—and a good way to step outside one's familiar frame of reference. An editorial in the
Times of India, titled "Rise of the Immigrant," sees Jindal as an examplar of the "global individual, one who can deliver and accept challenges in different circumstances anywhere in the world regardless of ethnic origin." More directly related to GROUNDED GLOBALISM is this opinion piece at CNN-IBN. It seems almost written to order in how it engages Jim Peacock's points about one's sense of self being rooted in place—and not simply in some physical locale but in the web of human relationships that give it significance. Titled "Diaspora Dilemma: Non-Indian but India's pride," the CNN-IBN piece asks if Indians are perhaps making too much of the accomplishments of Indian-Americans. One of the people interviewed in the article, an Indian employee of an American firm, has this reply: "It’s a matter of pride for us that Indian-Americans are doing well. It’s all about people-to-people relations, even in terms of business growth."

Left: Bobby Jindal's official 109th Congress photo
Right: Book jacket of Grounded Globalism by James L. Peacock

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Friday, October 12, 2007

Short Takes

Recent interviews:
Mort Zachter, author of DOUGH, on Outlook, the BBC World Service radio show. Listen to the interview here. Visit Outlook here. If you're hooked, then read this excerpt from DOUGH in the Gotham History Blotter.

Dave Kaufman, author of PEACHTREE CREEK, on Atlanta's WABE 90.1.

Judith Ortiz Cofer, author of A LOVE STORY BEGINNING IN SPANISH, in Nashville Scene.

Frye Gaillard, author of PROPHET FROM PLAINS, in Atlanta Magazine.

Recent reviews:
TELL BORGES IF YOU SEE HIM in Library Journal (scroll to bottom of page).

GEORGIA'S FRONTIER WOMEN in Journal of American History.

A COMMON THREAD, also in Journal of American History.

In the news:
Susan Neville, whose story collection THE INVENTION OF FLIGHT was an early winner of the FLANNERY O'CONNOR AWARD FOR SHORT FICTION, is profiled in this piece about her ongoing writing career.

Our friends at
The Georgia Review are bringing two distinguished poets, Natasha Trethewey and Stephen Dunn, to Atlanta and Athens.

We get blogged:
Lots of blogs, including Legends & Rumors, are picking up a story about the section of DIEHARD REBELS that deals with rumors.

Recommendation of an essay in COMING INTO CONTACT in Planetary.


Review of SENTIMENTAL CONFESSIONS in Allow Yourself To Be Awkward.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Kirby and Voigt on National Book Award Shortlist

The finalists for the 2007 National Book Awards have been announced. Two of the nominees in the poetry category also have published books with the UGA Press.

David Kirby, who is nominated for The House on Boulevard St., is also the
author of WHAT IS A BOOK? and ULTRA-TALK.

Ellen Bryant Voigt, who is nominated for Messenger: New and Selected Poems 1976-2006, is also the author of THE FLEXIBLE LYRIC and the editor of HAMMER AND BLAZE.

Congratulations to both of these distinguished writers—and to all of the other NBA 2007 nominees.

Top left: David Kirby, photo by Barbara Hamby
Top right: Ellen Bryant Voigt, photo by Ted Rosenberg

Bottom left: Book cover for Ultra-Talk
Bottom right: Book cover for The Flexible Lyric

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Friday, October 05, 2007

Books and the News

In the new Ken Burns documentary, The War, Sascha Weinzheimer's story reminds us that not all American prisoners of the Japanese were in the armed forces. Weinzheimer was just a child when the Philippines, where she and her family lived, were invaded by Japan. The Weinzheimers were among the more than 5,000 American civilians living there who fell into enemy hands.

To learn more about the Japanese internment of American civilians in the Philippines during World War II, check out CAPTURED. This history recounts daily life in five internment camps, including the Santo Tomas camp, where the Weinzheimers were held. Supported by diaries, memoirs, war crimes transcripts, Japanese soldiers' account, medical data, and many other sources, CAPTURED presents a detailed and moving chronicle of the internees' efforts to survive overcrowding, heavy labor, malnourishment, and disease. The
American Historical Review praised CAPTURED as a "truly remarkable and important book," and recommended it to "those interested in the wider American historical experience."

The refugee crisis along the Myanmar-Thailand border is only the latest episode of a decades-long problem. SINGING TO THE DEAD adds context to current headlines by recalling one woman's work alongside a group of Buddhist monks in Thailand who gave refuge to victims of the violence and oppression in Myanmar in the 1990s.

Booklist said that author Victoria Armour-Hileman chronicled her experience "with striking candor, confessing her sense of inadequacy in the face of so much pain and evil, her despair over the stark reality that indigenous people all around the world have been forced to the brink of extinction, and her inability to fathom the motives of those who commit atrocities. Observant, sweetly funny, modest, and compassionate, Armour-Hileman is a thought-provoking storyteller and an invaluable witness to what is both 'hideous and holy' in human nature."

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