Literary Criticism/Cultural Studies

Craig Maki talks ‘Detroit Country Music’ on Stateside

by Phillip Witteveen June 30, 2014

On Michigan Public Radio, Detroit Country Music co-author Craig Maki recently exhibited Detroit’s lesser-known country and bluegrass roots. Stemming from Appalachia to the West, intranational immigration to Southeast Michigan brought with it the blues-infused soul of  ”the end of the 19th century cowboy experience.” Lured to Detroit “not only at the invitation of the automakers, but also family members would call their cousins or their in-laws to come up and join them,” a migrated, country culture made a kind of tensile contact with our more Northern sensibilities. Artists like the York Brothers re-imagined a Michigan of “Hamtramck Mama,” a single which was banned by that eponymous city’s mayor, […]

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Charles Wright named Poet Laureate

by Shaun Manning June 12, 2014

Charles Wright, author of nearly two dozen books of poetry as well as two volumes in the University of Michigan Press’s Poets on Poetry series, has been named America’s Poet Laureate by the Library of Congress, as reported by the New York Times. Wright’s books of criticism with the Press include Quarter Notes: Improvisation and Interviews and Halflife: Improvisations and Interviews, 1977-87. “I’m very honored and flattered to be picked, but also somewhat confused,” Wright told the Times. “I really don’t know what I’m supposed to do. But as soon as I find out, I’ll do it.” Two years ago, the Poet […]

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Ellen Handler Spitz Reviews Children’s Literature

by Phillip Witteveen May 15, 2014

“Almost entirely absent from elementary school curriculums, rarely chosen as bedtime reading by parents, poetry — formerly a joyful accouterment of youth, an inexhaustible gift — seems forgotten,” writes Press author Ellen Handler Spitz in this week’s New York Times’ Sunday Book Review. “Yet poetry and children belong together.” Spitz’s review centers on two children’s books that “strive to create, by very different means and with different results, a sense of the poet Emily Dickinson as a person.” In this and other published criticism, she returns to the relationship between aesthetics and psychology, especially in youth cultures. For Spitz, a […]

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Buerkle to Deliver ‘Faye Sigman Woman of Valor Lecture’ at UW-Milwaukee

by Meredith Kahn May 7, 2014
cover of Nothing Happened: Charlotte Salomon and an Archive of Suicide

Darcy C. Buerkle, Associate Professor of History at Smith College and author of Nothing Happened: Charlotte Salomon and an Archive of Suicide, will deliver the 2014 Faye Sigman Woman of Valor Lecture at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Thursday, May 8. The lecture is sponsored by the Sam and Helen Stahl Center for Jewish Studies at UW-Milwaukee. Buerkle’s Nothing Happened takes a close look at Charlotte Salomon’s fantastical autobiography Life? or Theater? and the way that German social history has omitted the stories of German Jewish women and suicide. Salomon’s Life? or Theater? consists of 769 sequenced gouache paintings, through which she imagined the […]

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OFFERED AGAIN: ‘Guide to Editing Middle English’ and ‘Emily Dickinson’s Open Folios’

by Shaun Manning April 30, 2014

In recent years, modern digital printing techniques have enabled a much greater flexibility in reprinting and inventory management. But what about books published before the digital age? As part of the University of Michigan Press’s mission to keep the scholarship it publishes available and in print, we have already converted many of our backlist titles to take advantage of the new technology, ensuring we are consistently able to meet demand. Even so, with an in-print backlist of some 3000 titles, the time and effort required has meant that some titles have remained out of stock much longer than we would […]

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