Faculty Focus

“Homegrown Humanities,” a new discussion series aimed at showcasing books published by USF faculty, kicks off Sept. 12.

Special to USF News

TAMPA, Fla. (Sept. 7, 2012) – A new faculty book series sponsored by the Humanities Institute called “Homegrown Humanities” kicks off this fall in an effort to bring more attention to new books published by University of South Florida faculty.

The first discussion in the series will take place at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 12, in the Grace Allen Room at the USF Library. Refreshments will be served at 4 p.m. Two additional discussions are planned for the fall semester, on Oct. 10 and Nov. 14.

At USF, we have top scholars across the disciplines who are making major contributions to the humanities represented in new and exciting book projects,” said Professor Elizabeth Bird, director of the Humanities Institute.

“We hope that this Homegrown Humanities series, which will continue throughout the year, will be an effective way to showcase new books, allowing these scholars to present their work in an engaging and accessible way to USF colleagues and students, and also to the Tampa bay community,” she said.

Bird conducted a survey last year with faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences to see what areas they wanted the institute to focus on. The respondents said they wanted to see more USF work presented in forums that showcased current research and new books.

Bird said that in the humanities, “books are often the key way in which cutting edge scholarship is disseminated.”

The three events this fall, all held at the Grace Allen Room beginning with refreshments at 4 p.m., will feature:

·         Wednesday, Sept. 12: Assistant Professor Abraham Khan will discuss his book, Curt Flood in the Media: Baseball, Race and the Demise of the Activist Athlete. A star center fielder with the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1960s, Flood refused to accept being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies. He argued Major League Baseball had violated U.S. antitrust laws and the 13th Amendment’s prohibition of involuntary servitude. Flood appeared on television with Howard Cosell and described himself as a “well-paid slave.” In his book, Khan examines how the media constructed the case and Flood’s persona.

 

·         Wednesday, Oct. 10: Associate Professor Pablo Brescia will discuss his book, Modelos y practicas en el cuento hispanoamericano: Arreola, Borges, Cortazar. The book is a cross-cultural and cross-literary attempt to map out the history and theory of the Latin American short story in the 20th century. It provides a framework to understand the literary and cultural conditions under which the short story developed in Latin American literature.

 

·         Wednesday, Nov. 14: Assistant Professor Andrew Berish will discuss his book, Lonesome Roads and Streets of Dreams: Place, Mobility, and Race in Jazz of the 1930s and ‘40s. The book showcases how American jazz defined a culture particularly preoccupied with place. By analyzing both the performances and cultural context of leading jazz figures, including the many famous venues where they played, Berish bridges two dominant scholarly approaches to the genre, offering not only a new reading of swing era jazz but an entirely new framework for musical analysis in general, one that examines how the geographical realities of daily life can be transformed into musical sound.