University Press Week To Take Place November 11-17, 2012

Academic Publishers To Showcase Value To Society Through Yearly Celebration

NEW YORK, New York (November 12, 2012)— In celebration of its 75th year, the Association of American University Presses (AAUP) next week will honor the invaluable contributions that academic publishers make to modern society through its 2012 University Press Week.

The celebration, which runs from Nov. 11 through Nov. 17, will feature a wide range of activities on college campuses and surrounding communities throughout the nation that showcase how university presses have helped shape the public discourse over the past 125 years or so in North America and across the globe. These events and online features will showcase how the daily work of AAUP member publishers contribute to an informed society.

"America's colleges and universities have always met their responsibilities for preserving and enlarging the body of human knowledge. In our open society, they have an additional duty—that of making such knowledge available beyond the gates of the campus," said President Jimmy Carter in proclaiming the original University Press Week, marking the 1978 centennial of university press publishing in the United States.

Over the decades, university presses have published seminal scholarly works that don't initially capture the attention of commercial publishers, but that become touchstones of our understanding and culture. From Milton Friedman's Capitalism and Freedom to John Kennedy Toole's A Confederacy of Dunces to Albert Einstein's The Meaning of Relativity, they have produced books that stand the test of time.

"In recent years, academic publishing has come under serious attack, thanks in part to dwindling institutional budgets, a changing higher education landscape and increased pressure to turn profits. That is why now more than ever university presses need to raise greater awareness of their pivotal role in advancing academic scholarship for the benefit of society as a whole. University Press Week is a major way for them to achieve that end," observed Peter Dougherty, AAUP president and director of Princeton University Press.

AAUP represents 133 scholarly publishers that produce more than 12,000 works a year in print and digital form on subjects ranging from poetry to the economics of food, Christian thought to the geophysics of fracking, and forensic psychiatry to pre-Columbian history.

The organization promotes the value of university presses inside and outside of academia, acting as a collective voice for its members on matters of free speech, academic freedom, copyright and other core issues.

For more information about AAUP and University Press Week, please visit www.universitypressweek.org.

 

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