April 02, 2010

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By Kathryn Kopchik

LEWISBURG, Pa. — William Germano will give the talk, "What are Books Good For?" Thursday, April 15, at 5:30 p.m. in Bucknell Hall at Bucknell University.

The talk, which is free and open to the public, is given in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Bucknell University Press.

Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Cooper Union in New York, Germano formerly was vice president and publishing director at Routledge. He also served as editor-in-chief at Columbia University Press.

"Germano brings a wealth of experience in scholarly publishing to a consideration of the history of the book and the challenges facing scholarly presses," said Greg Clingham, director of the Bucknell University Press.

During his more than 20 years of directed programs in scholarly publishing, Germano has developed wide experience with disciplines in both the humanities and social sciences. He has taught in the graduate program in publishing at New York University, is a frequent speaker at academic conferences, and has given workshops and seminars on professional scholarly writing across North America and in Europe and New Zealand.

His current research interests include the processes by which scholars generate scholarship, the history of book indexes and the organization of knowledge in the Early Modern period, and the aesthetic and cultural work of opera. He is beginning work on a book, What Opera Knows, that will explore the kinds of knowledge embodied in operatic expression as well as preparing new editions of his books on writing.

Germano received his B.A. from Columbia and his Ph.D. in English from Indiana University. He studies and writes on intellectual production, the material culture of the book, and literature and the allied arts.

He is particularly interested in the writing life of scholars, a subject he has written on in Getting It Published: A Guide for Scholars and Anyone Else Serious about Serious Books (University of Chicago Press, 2001) and From Dissertation to Book (University of Chicago Press, 2005).

He has published in PMLA, minnesota review, Scholarly Publishing, SPAN, Publishing Research Quarterly, PNR, and other publications, and writes frequently for The Chronicle of Higher Education.

University Press: print and blog
Since its beginnings in 1968, the Bucknell University Press has published about 35 books per year in a wide range of humanities disciplines by authors from across the nation and the world. "Our publications are instrumental in exploring new areas of interdisciplinary research, and in making original contributions to the fields of Hispanic studies, 18th-century studies in literature, history, and thought in English, Scottish, Irish, German, French, Spanish, Italian and American contexts," said Clingham.

"The Press, which has acquired an international reputation, is integral to the Bucknell community, collaborating with many campus constituencies, providing faculty with opportunities for professional advancement - as members of the editorial board, authors, and advisers - and enabling students to acquire experience of publishing through internships and work-study," he said.

"As a reflection of that collaboration, the Press has established a blog where people can discuss books. Books touch every aspect of our lives, and the business of making books can be as interesting, diverse and thought-provoking as life itself," he said.

"The Bucknell University Press Blog is about the unusual and the surprising in the everyday world of academic publishing, about the unexpected cultural, social and artistic realms opened for our consideration, and about the remarkable ways in which our authors and their books enable us to engage in a world far beyond the boundaries of our historic and picturesque Pennsylvania town."

Contact: Division of Communications