Tag september theme

September Theme Sign-up for Books: Memoir & Memory

In choosing Memoir & Memory as our monthly theme for September, a reflection of our year in publishing the genre was telling: A particularly monumental year for Yale University Press in its release of personal letters and correspondence, we published The Richard Burton Diaries (Oct. 2012, pbk July 2013), edited by

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Surrendering to The Allure of the Archives : The Joys of Historical Research

Whether it’s summer or winter, you freeze. Your hands grow stiff as you try to decipher the document, and very touch of its parchment or rag paper stains your fingers with cold dust. The writing, no matter how meticulous, how regular, is barely legible to untrained eyes. It sits before

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Raphael Lemkin: The Unsung Hero Who Gave Genocide Its Name

Guilt without guilt is more destructive to us than justified guilt, because in the first case catharsis is impossible. He was the man who coined the term “genocide” and dedicated his entire life to making it illegal — but most people still don’t know his name. Raphael Lemkin, a Holocaust

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Svetlana Alpers: A Life Spent Looking

“This is not art history, and it is not criticism, nor is it some mixture of the two. It is not, in other words, what people expect me to be doing.”—Svetlana Alpers, Roof Life, “1 Beginning” Svetlana Alpers is one of the most influential art historians of her generation. She

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Ghostwriting on Behalf of the ‘Greatest Victorian’s’ Ghost

The Memoirs of Walter Bagehot is an unusual inclusion in our September theme, “Memoir and Memory,” as the recorded memories, although told in the first person, were fabricated on behalf of Bagehot by historian Frank Prochaska. Walter Bagehot (1826-1877), called the “Greatest Victorian”, left no memoir of his life as a prominent

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Letters from the Western Front

“Write as often as you can. I long for letters now.” —Private Peter McGregor In 1989, historian Anthony Fletcher found an old tin trunk among his grandmother’s possessions. In it were 243 letters, sent by his grandfather Major Reggie Trench to his wife Clare during World War I. They lay

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A Conversation with Rachel Adams on Raising Henry and a Book Giveaway

Publishing this month, Rachel Adams‘s Raising Henry: A Memoir of Motherhood, Disability, and Discovery gives a deeply moving and honest account of welcoming a baby born with Down syndrome. Adams, a professor of English and American studies, is also director of the Future of Disability Studies Project at Columbia University. In the interview below,

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Happy Birthday, Leonard Bernstein!

August 25, 2013 is the 95th birthday anniversary of the brilliant Leonard Bernstein. A charismatic and versatile musician, Bernstein attained international super-star status in his lifetime. The Leonard Bernstein Letters, edited by Nigel Simeone, reveals  the breadth of Bernstein’s musical interests, his constant struggle to find the time to compose, his

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What Changed When Everything Changed : The Fluidity of American National Identity

When Americans come upon a social arrangement they want to preserve, they do not alter their behavior to fit their values; they alter their values to fit their behavior. They change what it means to be an American… With intensely divisive issues like voting rights, immigration policy, and the war

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Time No Longer Scrutinizes American Myth & History

In Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century Patrick Smith explores America’s need for a new perspective and self-image. Smith argues that while old myths and stories once motivated and defined America and what it meant to be American, that these myths cannot drive the nation forward any longer. Instead

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