University Press Week Announced

There are Thousands of Reasons to Celebrate

“…If we are to have a life of the mind, we need carriers of this life. University presses perform that essential function.”

—Jay Parini

May 30, 2012 (New York, NY)— In the summer of 1978 President Jimmy Carter proclaimed a University Press Week “in recognition of the impact, both here and abroad, of American university presses on culture and scholarship.”  That influence continues today, as does the increasing vitality of university press publishing programs, the many ways and means by which works are now produced and distributed, and the urgent need for articulate discourse in times pervaded by sound bites.  

Taking place November 11-17, 2012, University Press Week highlights the extraordinary work of university presses and their many contributions to culture, the academy, and an informed society. University Press Week promises special events and readings at universities and in communities across the country, as well as online galleries of selected titles and other features.

The breadth of university press activities may surprise you. Consider these facts, gathered by the Association of American University Presses (AAUP), which this year celebrates its 75th anniversary:

  • AAUP member presses produce more than 12,000 works per year, in both print and digital form.
  • The AAUP membership alone comprises 133 scholarly presses, found in places ranging from Abilene to Toronto, from Kalamazoo to Hong Kong. While almost every major research university has a scholarly press, so too do many smaller institutions, and the collective range of topics covered is fascinating: everything from Christian thought to the geophysics of fracking, from forensic psychiatry to pre-Columbian history, and from poetry to the economics of food.

  • University presses collaborate with each other, and with other institutions, in interesting and intrepid ways. Check out Project Euclid, a ground-breaking collaboration in mathematics; or the Archaeology of the Americas Digital Monograph Initiative, a joint project of six university presses; or explore the past (and present) through the Publishing the Long Civil Rights Movement project.

  • Following the September 11th attacks, AAUP established its “Books for Understanding” program in recognition that scholarly presses publish knowledge that often cannot be found anywhere else. Now featuring a list of 85 need-to-know topics—and growing apace—the books represented provide deeply researched information on issues and events of international import. Whether the topic is North Korea or water rights in the Southwest, a university press book has the answers, and the questions, you are looking for.

AAUP is dedicated to the support of creative and effective scholarly communications through the cooperative programs and information resources provided to its member publishers.

University Press Week offers much to celebrate and much to follow, and we’d like you to join us. For more information about UP Week events, please visit www.universitypressweek.org.