Monthly Archives: April 2016

UBC Press and University of Washington Press to develop digital publishing platform in Indigenous studies with grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

SEATTLE, WA—The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded the University of British Columbia a three-year $509,000 grant to support a collaboration between UBC Press and the University of Washington Press for the development of a new writing and publishing infrastructure for Indigenous studies scholarship.

Melissa Pitts, director at UBC Press, said the project responds to the needs of a new generation of readers, scholars, students, and practitioners pursuing Indigenous research and cultural revitalization projects: “The new platform will serve scholars engaged in collaborative research, writing, and publishing with and within Indigenous communities. It will combine mainstream and academic frameworks, enabling respectful protocols for accessing and circulating cultural heritage in an online environment.”

“Our project is designed to provide solutions to existing barriers to full participation in the exchange of ideas and knowledge,” said Darcy Cullen, project lead and UBC Press editor. “We will create a digital hub in which Indigenous communities and scholars can work together to create, share, and preserve content and present their findings in new and useful ways.”

UBC Press and University of Washington Press will develop a digital platform for Indigenous multimedia books. Based on Scalar, an authoring and publishing platform, it will offer a suite of tools for linking data and analyses to digital content from around the world and for interacting in culturally sensitive ways with heritage materials, ranging from clothing, beadwork, weapons, and tools to songs, stories, and dances. It will include customizable methods for authoring teams to label content and inform readers about cultural protocols for access and use of specific content.

The multimedia books will incorporate, and offer seamless navigation through, textual, audio, and visual materials and will organize content in different ways for different purposes, offering navigational paths tailored for distinct audiences: scholars, community-based groups and organizations with a stake in Indigenous languages and cultural heritage, and instructors and their students.

Jill Campbell, coordinator for the Musqueam Language and Culture Department, applauded the project’s vision: “We are in full support of this respectful, digital publishing platform, which facilitates collaborative partnerships with the First Nations communities and highlights the scholarship of First Nations language, culture, and history to render it more broadly accessible. It stands to be a transformative part of the current broad-based movement towards the revitalization of the rich linguistic and cultural heritage vested in the First Nations in this region and beyond.”

Kathryn Bunn-Marcuse of the University of Washington’s Burke Museum highlighted the need for this project for the Indigenous arts: “The visual aspects of Indigenous arts are fundamentally tied to movement, song, land, and language. Digital technologies have the potential to reflect the connections between cultural belongings (artifacts) and their associated intangible rights. By harnessing these new technologies, this project will enhance the understanding and revitalization of cultural practices, while allowing for more robust forums for collaborative knowledge production.”

As the leading publishers of Indigenous studies scholarship in the Northwest, UBC Press and University of Washington Press are spearheading this initiative. It will be developed in partnership with the UBC Library, museums (UBC’s Museum of Anthropology, the Reciprocal Research Network, and UW’s Burke Museum), experts in intellectual property and cultural heritage management in a digital environment (Mukurtu, Local Contexts), First Nations communities and organizations (the Musqueam Indian Band, the Kwagiulth First Nation, and the First Nations Technology Council), platform developers and digital management specialists (the Alliance for Networking Visual Culture, which produces the authoring and publishing platform Scalar), among others.

Nicole Mitchell, director at University of Washington Press, said: “As publishers with a deep history of supporting knowledge production by and with Indigenous, First Nations, and Native American people and communities, we are grateful for the support of the Mellon Foundation to take this work forward into the digital and multimedia future.”

According to Chadwick Allen, associate vice provost for faculty advancement at University of Washington, “This innovative project is yet another indication of the leadership role the University of Washington is taking in the development of Native American and Indigenous studies—across disciplines and institutions, through the integration of new technologies with traditional sources of knowledge, and in respectful collaboration with sovereign Native nations.”

About the University of Washington Press: Established in 1920, the University of Washington Press supports the research, education, and outreach missions of the University of Washington by publishing peer-reviewed scholarship for an international community of students, scholars, and intellectually curious readers. The press is known for groundbreaking lists in critical ethnic studies; Native American and Indigenous studies; Asian American studies; Asian studies; anthropology; art history and visual culture; environmental studies; women’s, gender, and sexuality studies; and U.S. history, among other fields.

About UBC Press: UBC Press produces books integral to Canada’s cultural, political, and social fabric and is recognized for its contributions to Indigenous studies, Canadian history, political science, environmental history, law and society, gender and sexuality studies, and transnational studies, among others. Established in 1971, the press publishes sophisticated and transformative works by authors whose thought and research pushes the boundaries of scholarly discourse and makes a vital contribution to the democratic exchange of ideas.

For more information, please contact:

University of Washington Press, Beth Fuget, Advancement at 206-616-0818 or bfuget [at]

UBC Press, Kerry Kilmartin, Publicist and Events Manager at 604-822-8244 or kilmartin [at]

Association for Asian American Studies Conference Preview

The 2016 Association for Asian American Studies (AAAS) Conference will meet for the first time in Miami, Florida, from April 28-30. Now approaching its fortieth year, the AAAS’s annual national conference has become a vibrant hub for the latest Asian American Studies scholarship and intersectional fields and practitioners, including scholars, activists, writers, and artists.

Stop by the University of Washington Press booth in the book exhibit hall for discounted titles and to say hello to Editor in Chief Larin McLaughlin and Senior Acquisitions Editor Ranjit Arab. Use the hashtag #AAAS2016 to follow along with the meeting on social media, and the promo code WST1613 is good for 30% off and free shipping.

Join the second annual New Books Reception on Thursday, April 28 from 6:15 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. on the first floor, book exhibit hall to toast Sarah D. Wald (The Nature of California) and other AAAS members who published books between May 2015 and May 2016!

New releases:

The Nature of California: Race, Citizenship, and Farming since the Dust Bowl
By Sarah D. Wald

Japanese Prostitutes in the North American West, 1887-1920
By Kazuhiro Oharazeki

Asians in Colorado: A History of Persecution and Perseverance in the Centennial State
By William Wei

Enduring Conviction: Fred Korematsu and His Quest for Justice
By Lorraine K. Bannai

Classics of Asian American Literature:

Other featured titles:

Earth Day 2016: Events, Excerpts, and Books for Your TBR Pile

This Earth Day, we’re featuring a number of events, excerpts, and recent and forthcoming titles that span the University of Washington Press’s leading lists in environmental science and history, including books in the Weyerhaeuser Environmental Books and Culture, Place, and Nature series.

Through mid-May we are partnering on a few big book launch events and hope you will join us! Looking for more in the meantime? The University of Washington is celebrating Earth Day 2016 across Seattle, Tacoma, Bothell, and beyond. Check out the UW Earth Day events page for more information. Follow #EarthDay and #EarthDay2016 for other events and activities near you!

reese-jacketOnce and Future River: Reclaiming the Duwamish
Photographs by Tom Reese
Essay by Eric Wagner
Afterword by James Rasmussen
Northwest Writers Fund

Join us for the launch event presented by Town Hall and University Book Store, as part of the Science series and Town Green:

Tuesday, May 3, 7:30 p.m. // Great Hall, 1119 Eighth Avenue (enter on Eighth Avenue), Seattle, WA 98101 // Panelists include James Rasmussen, Duwamish Tribal member and director of the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition, and moderator Lynda Mapes, Seattle Times environmental reporter. // BUY TICKETS

The Nature of California: Race, Citizenship, and Farming since the Dust Bowl
By Sarah D. Wald

Join for the book release celebration in Portland, Oregon hosted by Bark:

Sunday, May 15, 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. // Bark, 351 NE 18th Ave., Portland, OR 97232 // Light refreshments provided

Pre-order books at 30% off using discount code WSH2275

Read an excerpt from the book about the history of the United Farm Workers and the modern environmental movement Continue reading

Behind the Covers: “The Holding Hours”

Join us for a reading at Elliott Bay Book
Company with Christianne Balk and Judith Skillman (House of Burnt Offerings):

Sunday, April 24, 3:00 p.m. //
Elliott Bay Book Company, 1521 Tenth Avenue, Seattle, WA, 98122

For this 20th anniversary of National Poetry Month, we look at the latest title in the Pacific Northwest Poetry Series, The Holding Hours by Christianne Balk. In this exquisite and moving collection, Balk explores the subtle and surprising transformations that come from caring for her young, neurologically injured daughter within the landscape of the Pacific Northwest. Series editor Linda Bierds writes, “Page by page, we’re pulled into ecosystems of the heart more deeply than the clear surface of these poems leads us to expect. And that’s the triumph of this book, for me: how clarity and restraint and the poet/biologist’s precise vision can hold so much.” In this guest post, UW Press senior designer Thomas Eykemans walks us through the creative process in designing the book’s cover.

HoldingHours-FrontThis book of poetry is a celebration of life that weaves challenging topics such as parenthood and disability with descriptions of the organic richness of the Pacific Northwest environment. I connected these disparate themes by working with Seattle artist Christine Smith to form the letters out of sword ferns while keeping the background clinically empty. As an added bonus, the endpapers burst with foliage before settling into the rhythm of the poetry.

The title is set sideways to allow it to have the greatest visual impact. The text is set in Andada, an organic slab-serif typeface designed by Carolina Giovagnoli for Huerta Tipográfica.



Preliminary test shots of fern letters.

Continue reading

April 2016 News, Reviews, and Events


Author David Williams with his mom and fellow author, Jacqueline B. Williams (Photo via AKCHO)

Author David B. Williams with his mom and fellow author, Jacqueline B. Williams (Photo via AKCHO)

Congratulations to David B. Williams, winner of the 2016 Association of King County Historical Organizations (AKCHO) Virginia Marie Folkins Award for Too High and Too Steep. The awards event will be held on Tuesday, June 7, 5:30-8:30 p.m., at the Northwest African American Museum. Read more at the AKCHO site.

Reviews and Interviews

The PBS series 10 Parks That Changed America, featuring Gas Works Park and interviews with Richard Haag and The Landscape Architecture of Richard Haag author Thaisa Way, will air on Tuesday, April 12. Watch the preview and select clips now.
Continue reading

Organization of American Historians Conference Preview

The Organization of American Historians heads to Providence, Rhode Island from April 7-10 and we will be debuting and previewing a number of new history titles across sub-fields including American and transnational history, African American studies, Asian American studies, Native American and Indigenous studies, and more.

Stop by booth #524 if you are attending the meeting to see our full range of titles and to meet Editor in Chief Larin McLaughlin and Senior Acquisitions Editor Ranjit Arab. Use the #OAH2016 hashtag to follow along with the conference on social media.

We feature a few of our new and forthcoming titles, including several books publishing soon in our Indigenous Confluences series, here:

New releases:

Forthcoming from our Indigenous Confluences series:

California through Native Eyes: Reclaiming History
By William J. Bauer, Jr.
Forthcoming June 2016

Using oral histories of Concow, Pomo, and Paiute workers, taken as part of a New Deal federal works project, this innovative book reveals how Native peoples have experienced and interpreted the history of the land we now call California. The result both challenges the “California story” and enriches it with new voices and important points of view, serving as a model for understanding Native historical perspectives in other regions.

Native Students at Work: American Indian Labor and Sherman Institute’s Outing Program, 1900-1945
By Kevin Whalen
Foreword by Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert
Forthcoming June 2016

For the first time, historian Kevin Whalen reveals the challenges of Native people from around the American Southwest who participated in labor “outing programs” at Sherman Institute, a federal Indian boarding school in Riverside, California. Despite cruel working conditions, young Native men and women used the outing program to their advantage whenever they could, forming urban indigenous communities and sharing money and knowledge gained in the city with those back home.

Other featured titles: