Thirty University of Hawai‘i Press World History titles (both print and eBook!) are now 30% OFF through the end of July.
Find a digital-only special issue, “Roads and Oceans” of the Journal of World History FREE HERE.
At the 2019 Ka Palapala Po‘okela awards presentation on December 13, we were delighted that seven of our titles were selected as honorees. These included:
• Pathway of the Birds: The Voyaging Achievements of Māori and Their Polynesian Ancestors, by New Zealand author Andrew Crowe, won in two categories: Illustrative or Photographic Books and Text or Reference Books.
• Light in the Queen’s Garden: Ida May Pope, Pioneer for Hawaiʻi’s Daughters, 1862–1914, by San Diego educator Sandra Bonura, won the Award of Excellence for Nonfiction.
• The Charm Buyers, a novel by Lillian Howan, won the Award of Excellence for Literature.
• Nā Wāhine Koa: Hawaiian Women for Sovereignty and Demilitarization, with personal essays by Moanikeʻala Akaka, Maxine Kahaulelio, Terrilee Kekoʻolani-Raymond, and Loretta Ritte; edited by Noelani Kaʻōpua-Goodyear, tied as winner in the Hawaiian Language, Culture, and History category.
• In Haste with Aloha: Letters and Diaries of Queen Emma, 1881–1885, edited by David W. Forbes, tied for honorable mention in the Nonfiction category.
• Kalaupapa Place Names: Waikolu to Nihoa, John R. K. Clark, received the honorable mention in Text or Reference Books.
• Inhouse Design of New Zealand won in the Design category for Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing, by Sean Mallon and Sébastien Galliot.
We mark last week’s passing of Trần Đình Trụ, the author of Ship of Fate: Memoir of a Vietnamese Repatriate (UH Press, 2017), with words from the book’s co-translators Jana K. Lipman and Bac Hoai Tran:
“Trần Đình Trụ’s life story was one of grace, fortitude, and devotion to his family. A skilled seaman and a naval commander, he journeyed from North Vietnam to South Vietnam as a young man, and then from South Vietnam to the Philippines, Guam, Japan, and ultimately, the United States. In his memoir, he recounts his evacuation from South Vietnam in 1975, his experiences in a refugee camp in Guam, and his decision to return to Vietnam in October 1975 with more than 1500 Vietnamese repatriates as the captain of the Việt Nam Thương Tín. After he successfully navigated the ship back to Vietnam, the new government viewed him and the repatriates with fear and suspicion. Trần Đình Trụ suffered physical and psychological brutality in “re-education” camps for more than twelve years. On release, he finally rejoined with his family and resettled in the United States. Through his memoir, Trần Đình Trụ captured the singularity of his life story and the universality of despair and uncertainty at the end of war. He will be deeply missed by his family and community.”
Originally this post was a way to mark this month’s Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month by sharing personal memories from an editorial perspective of a pioneering Asian American literary icon, Milton Murayama. It has grown to include other remembrances from a marketing perspective. We are all proud to be the publisher of his bestselling novels.
Masako Ikeda, Acquisitons:
I only met Milton Murayama once, at the Asian American studies conference held in Honolulu in 1991. I tagged along with Sharon Yamamoto, who acquired his manuscripts for Five Years on a Rock and then Plantation Boy. Nothing at that meeting was particularly memorable as I sort of stood in the background, but I ended up enjoying serving as his managing editor for those two books. We wrote letters back and forth and continued to do so even as the century changed. Most of the time all he said in his letters was that he wanted to buy copies of his books or he was writing a new book, which wouldn’t be finished for a while.
After Five Years our production department held onto an old computer drive knowing that Milton had not updated his system and refused to do so. Our marketing staff coaxed him a number of times: “Milton, I’ll help you set it all up.” He kept sending me hard copy manuscripts with perforations on both ends along with five-inch floppy disks. The manuscript wasn’t complete so he wanted everything back, including the floppy disks, which he couldn’t find anymore. Right before he sent the very final manuscript, which eventually became Dying in a Strange Land, we had gotten rid of the drive, and there was no way to read his WordPerfect files. I ended up asking our Production staffer to keystroke everything, which she did in three days.
Communication with Milton was always interesting and often a little strange. He’d call to complain about the copy editor who didn’t understand that “Pidgin English doesn’t have ellipses points, or letter spaces in between.” He would also hesitate to say “Okay bye” and hang up the phone, so our conversation would go on for a long time with several seconds of dead silence breaking our talks in the most uncomfortable way.
Milton passed away in July 2016, and I didn’t know it until a month later when we saw the obituary in the Sunday paper. I felt guilty for not staying in touch. I do think of him quite often just as I think about Sharon, his true editor, whose passing was almost fourteen years earlier.
Steven Hirashima, Marketing:
My fondest memories of Milton would be visiting his fudge brown three-story home in the hillside area of Glen Park of San Francisco. Whenever I was in town I would always make a point to book a visit. The ritual was always the same. I would call to say I’m leaving the hotel and heading for the Union Square BART Station. Once at Glen Park, I would call to say I arrived and no more than five minutes later Milton would arrive in his old Toyota and we would head up the steep and winding road to his “retreat in the hills.”
Overlooking the flatlands of the city with Candlestick Park and SFO to the west, I would always be given a tour as to what was updated or repurposed around the house since my last visit (the actor Lou Diamond Phillips’s childhood family had been a previous neighbor), from a newly reapportioned sunroom downstairs to a section outside with a bed of spring flowers to Milton’s designated writing room where tucked in a corner would be his antique word processor (a Commodore 64), which I almost convinced him to ditch in favor of a newfangled Mac but he never wavered and remained forever faithful to his trusty machine.
Any trip to the Murayamas would invariably end in the kitchen where Milton and Dawn were the most gracious of hosts. We would often gather around the large formal dinner table for spirited conversation from his next book project or his time in the 442nd, feasting on a bowl of delicious Alaskan King crab legs and steamed garlic brussels sprouts, masterfully prepared by Milton only minutes before. Looking back, they were wonderful and precious times. How I long for another afternoon with Milton. Until then, God Speed and Aloha.
Carol Abe, Marketing:
My very first encounter with Milton was in 1975, the year his original edition of All I Asking for Is My Body published, the green one with the bamboo forest on the cover and an overly large “$3” printed on the back cover. He and wife Dawn lined up signings at Honolulu Book Shops, at which I was a bookstore clerk (we weren’t called “booksellers” until twenty years later). Of course I bought a copy with my generous employee discount and had it signed, but didn’t otherwise have a personal connection to him. Jump to 2008: I’d been at UH Press for ten years and we released Milton’s fourth and final novel in his tetralogy about the Oyama family. Steve Hirashima had switched to managing our Asian studies list and I did the same for our Hawai‘i, Pacific, and Asian American titles.
Dying in a Strange Land had a pub date of June but Milton called and said he would wait to visit in the fall, when it’d be cooler, and he only wanted to do low-key promotion of a few bookstore signings. Then, as now, the Press had no travel funds to support a book tour anyway. He finally decided November would be a good time to come and would do Maui and O‘ahu signings, but no readings or talks. So I booked a combination of Barnes & Noble and Borders stores that followed his wishes and filled his itinerary. We corresponded by snail mail and exchanged letters. In one of these, Milton revealed some of the real-life equivalents to the characters in his books. He wrote, “There’s more fact than fiction in my stories.”
After a fan of his scolded me for not paying for his travel and doing him justice, a series of serendipitous things happened that culminated in an event more befitting of a literary icon, “Revisiting Murayama: From Plantation to Diaspora.” Gary Pak, as it happened, had videotaped an interview with Milton that he still needed to screen; the amazing Marie Hara agreed to be co-organizer and was a conduit to both UHM English department and Bamboo Ridge; Craig Howes put me in touch with Phyllis Look, who had directed a play of All I Asking. The program developed further by recruiting Arnold Hiura, Lee Cataluna, and one of our student employees, Tricia Tolentino, all tied together with Steve as emcee. (And, by rolling the dice, we obtained funding from SEED and Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, including an honorarium for Milton.)
During their visit, I had chauffeured Milton and Dawn to four or five appearances, perhaps being a bit manic in my driving. At the end, I asked Milton to sign my copy of Dying in a Strange Land. We all laughed warmly as I read his inscription: “It’s been fun getting to know you. I love smart flaky women, who’re also good drivers.” It was my honor and pleasure to have been a tiny part of his life.
Each of Milton’s novels can be read separately and not in sequence. Dying in a Strange Land is on sale now, at a very special price—click here to order.
The 14th annual Hawai‘i Book and Music Festival happens this weekend, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, and UH Press will once again be there! Come to our tent alongside Honolulu Hale, near the Kristi Yamaguchi Keiki Reading Corner, and be among the first to see our newest titles. Also attend several presentations by UHP authors and follow them to our booth for short booksignings before you head off to the next session. Check out the interactive festival schedule here.
Featured UHP titles and presenters:
Heiau, ‘Āina, Lani: The Hawaiian Temple System in Ancient Kahikinui and Kaupō, Maui will be discussed by coauthors Patrick Vinton Kirch and Clive Ruggles on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. Although the book is still at the printer, a set of page proofs will be available to browse and preorder at the event discount. Following their talk, 11:15–11:45, Dr. Kirch will sign copies of two of his most recent titles at our tent: Kua‘āina Kahiko: Life and Land in Ancient Kahikinui, Maui and Unearthing the Polynesian Past: Explorations and Adventures of an Island Archaeologist.
Indigenous Literatures from Micronesia, edited by Evelyn Flores and Emelihter Kihleng, is the inaugural title in The New Oceania Literary Series. On Saturday at 1:00 p.m., series editor Craig Santos Perez moderates a session with several volume contributors—Mary Hattori, Josie Howard, Kisha Borja-Quichocho-Calvo, Angela Hoppe-Cruz, and James Viernes. They’ll head over to our tent to sign copies, 2:15–2:45 p.m.
Palapala: A Journal for Hawaiian Language and Literature has just released its second volume as open-access on ScholarSpace, an online institutional repository for University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Journal editor Jeffrey (Kapali) Lyon speaks on a panel at 2:00 p.m. We will have a few copies of the print edition of volume one at our booth and volume two will be available in print later.
Nā Kahu: Portraits of Native Hawaiian Pastors at Home and Abroad, 1820–1900, by Nancy J. Morris and Robert Benedetto, will be presented on Saturday, 4:00 p.m., by Dr. Morris, Craig Howes, Aaron Mahi, and Kenneth Makuakane. A signing by Dr. Morris is scheduled for Sunday, 2:00–2:30 p.m.
Nā Inoa Hoku: Hawaiian and Pacific Star Names opens Sunday’s program at 10 a.m. with Clive Ruggles and coauthor John Kaipo Mahelona (coauthor Rubellite Kawena Johnson is unable to attend). They will sign at the UHP tent immediately following their talk.
Tadaima! I Am Home: A Transnational Family History will have a panel at 11:00, with author Tom Coffman, Larry Miwa, and Stephen Miwa; the latter two are members of the family whose story is told in the book. The three will sign at our booth from 12:15–12:45 p.m. on Sunday. (The background image on the book’s cover is a page from Larry Fumio Miwa’s diary kept as a fourteen-year-old at the time of the Hiroshima bombing—view the page here.)
Hawai‘i’s White Tern: Manu-o-Kū, an Urban Seabird is the basis of Susan Scott‘s illustrated talk, “The Wings of Honolulu’s Wild Side.” Hear her speak at noon and then head to our booth for a signing at 1:15.
A Power in the World: The Hawaiian Kingdom in Oceania, by Lorenz Gonschor will publish in June, however, we’ll have an early proofing copy on display and will take preorders. Dr. Gonschor is a presenter on three Sunday panels, including one focused on his book at 2:00 p.m. Joining him as a discussant is Tiffany Lani Ing, whose forthcoming book, Reclaiming Kalākaua: Nineteenth-Century Perspectives on a Hawaiian Sovereign, will be published in October by UH Press.
Nā Wāhine Koa: Hawaiian Women for Sovereignty and Demilitarization, by Moanike‘ala Akaka, Maxine Kahaulelio, Terrilee Keko‘olani-Raymond, and Loretta Ritte is one of the books explored in the 3:00 afternoon session at the Humanities Pavilion, sponsored by Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities. The book’s editor Noelani Goodyear-Ka‘opua joins the panel moderated by HCH’s new executive director (and UHP author) Aiko Yamashiro. Dr. Goodyear-Ka‘opua signs copies at 4:15 p.m.
Other spring releases premiering at our booth:
Wind, Wings, and Waves: A Hawai‘i Nature Guide, by Rick Soehren;
The Past before Us: Moʻokūʻauhau as Methodology, edited by Nālani Wilson-Hokowhitu;
Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine: The Food Movement That Changed the Way Hawai‘i Eats, by Samuel Hideo Yamashita.
A limited number of copies of these and many more will be available and we’ll be taking orders for books not on hand, with free US shipping.
Pomona College history professor Samuel Yamashita‘s lecture on what he calls the “Japanese Turn” in fine dining drew a full house to University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Hamilton Library last week (April 17). Audience members included well-known chef Roy Yamaguchi, who was part of this “turn” during his years in Los Angeles when he pioneered Euro-Asian cuisine. As a tie-in, advance copies and flyers were displayed of Professor Yamashita’s new UH Press book, HAWAI‘I REGIONAL CUISINE: The Food Movement That Changed the Way Hawai‘i Eats. His talk was related to the library’s exhibit by Japan collection librarian Tokiko Bazzell, “Washoku: Japanese Foods & Flavors,” which is on display until May 27 in Hamilton Library’s First Floor Elevator Gallery.
Read the wonderfully comprehensive information and view more photos on the event here. Yamashita will be returning to Honolulu in mid-July to launch Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine; meanwhile, order the book here. If you would like to be notified of the July events, contact Carol Abe in the UH Press marketing department. Mahalo to the UH Libraries and other sponsors for hosting Professor Yamashita during his UH Mānoa visit: UHM Center for Japanese Studies, UHM Department of American Studies, UHM Department of Women’s Studies, Kapi‘olani Community College, and UHM Student Equity, Excellence and Diversity (SEED).
June 23, 2017: This post has been updated with the results shown in bold.
Now in its 23rd year, the Ka Palapala Po‘okela Awards are presented by Hawai‘i Book Publishers Association to honor Hawai‘i’s finest books and their authors, illustrators, photographers, designers, and publishers. While previously given annually, HBPA has switched to a biennial schedule, and this year’s eligible titles have 2015 and 2016 copyright dates. The winners will be announced at the awards celebration scheduled for Thursday, June 22, 6 to 8:30 pm, at the ARTS at Marks Garage in downtown Honolulu; the event is free and open to the public.
University of Hawai‘i Press nominees include (listed alphabetically by author’s last name):
The Healers by Kimo Armitage (Excellence in Literature)
The Lives of Hawai‘i’s Dolphins and Whales: Natural History and Conservation by Robin W. Baird (Honorable Mention for Excellence in Natural Science)
Facing the Spears of Change: The Life and Legacy of John Papa ‘Ī‘ī by Marie Alohalani Brown (Winner of the Award of Excellence in Hawaiian Language, Culture & History)
Royal Hawaiian Featherwork: Nā Hulu Aliʻi by Leah Caldeira, Christina Hellmich, Adrienne L. Kaeppler, Betty Lou Kam, Roger G. Rose; copublished with Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (Excellence in Hawaiian Language, Culture & History; Winner of the Award of Excellence in Illustrative or Photographic Books)
Hawai‘i’s Animals Do the Most Amazing Things by Marion Coste, illustrated by Rena Ekmanis (Honorable Mention for Excellence in Children’s Literature)
Sunny Skies, Shady Characters: Cops, Killers, and Corruption in the Aloha State by James Dooley (Honorable Mention for Excellence in Nonfiction)
Hawai‘i’s Scenic Roads: Paving the Way for Tourism in the Islands by Dawn E. Duensing (Excellence in Nonfiction)
Picture Bride Stories by Barbara F. Kawakami (Excellence in Nonfiction)
Unearthing the Polynesian Past: Explorations and Adventures of an Island Archaeologist by Patrick Vinton Kirch (Excellence in Nonfiction)
Hawai‘i’s Kōlea: The Amazing Transpacific Life of the Pacific Golden-Plover by Oscar W. Johnson and Susan Scott (Winner of the Award of Excellence in Natural Science)
Murder Frames the Scene by Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl (Winner of the Award of Excellence in Literature)
Protea: A Guide to Cultivated Species and Varieties by Lewis J. Matthews (Excellence in Natural Science)
For a Song by Rodney Morales (Excellence in Literature)
Plants for the Tropical Xeriscape: A Gardener’s Guide by Fred D. Rauch and Paul R. Weissich (Excellence in Natural Science)
Bayonets in Paradise: Martial Law in Hawai‘i during World War II by Harry N. Scheiber and Jane L. Scheiber (Excellence in Nonfiction)
Curve of the Hook: An Archaeologist in Polynesia by Yosihiko Sinoto with Hiroshi Aramata; edited by Frank Stewart; translated by Frank Stewart and Madoka Nagadō (Winner of the Award of Excellence in Nonfiction)
A Sky Wonderful with Stars: 50 Years of Modern Astronomy on Maunakea by Michael J. West (Excellence in Illustrative or Photographic Books and designer Mardee Melton for Excellence in Design)
For a complete list of this year’s nominated titles, see the HBPA website.
Best wishes to each of our nominees!
University of Hawai‘i Press will be among the local publishers, organizations, booksellers, and other vendors exhibiting at the 12th annual Hawai‘i Book and Music Festival taking place next weekend, May 6 and 7, at the Frank F. Fasi Civic Grounds next to Honolulu Hale. Admission and parking are free. Go to the festival website to download detailed daily schedules and a PDF of the map, as well as links to the latest news on its Facebook and Twitter feeds.
• David Forbes, In Haste with Aloha: Letters and Diaries of Queen Emma, 1881–1885 (11:00 am) and Paintings, Prints, and Drawings of Hawai‘i from the Sam and Mary Cooke Collection (3:00 pm talk with Mary Cooke; the book is distributed for Mānoa Heritage Center).
• Frank Stewart, editor of Yosihiko Sinoto‘s Curve of the Hook: An Archaeologist in Polynesia (12 noon). The panel will also include Eric Komori, Alexander Mawyer, and Hardy Spoehr.
• Robin Baird, The Lives of Hawai‘i’s Dolphins and Whales: Natural History and Conservation (1:00 pm).
• Michael Tsai, The People’s Race Inc.: Behind the Scenes at the Honolulu Marathon (3:00 pm).• Tom Coffman, The Island Edge of America: A Political History of Hawai‘i (3:00 pm; no signing at UHP booth).• John Rosa, Local Story: The Massie-Kahahawai Case and the Culture of History (3:00 pm)
• Kapali Lyon will moderate a panel on PALAPALA: A Journal for Hawaiian Language and Literature = Palapala: he puke pai no ka ʻōlelo me ka moʻolelo Hawaiʻi (1:00 pm). No signing is possible but come by for information on this open-access journal.• Dr. Billy Bergin, The Hawaiian Horse (2:00 pm).• Winona K. Mesiona Lee and Mele A. Look, the editors of Ho‘i Hou Ka Mauli Ola: Pathways to Native Hawaiian Health, the latest in the Hawai‘inuiākea series (3:00 pm).
At our tent we’ll have event discounts on the above titles and many others, and will offer free shipping on orders taken onsite. Slightly damaged (“hurt”) stock and a few titles in new condition will have special bargain prices.
We look forward to seeing everyone at this outside celebration of story and song!
When it comes to listing events, we can’t miss first mentioning our exhibit booth at the Association for Asian Studies annual conference taking place March 16–19 in Toronto. Acquisitions editors Pamela Kelley and Stephanie Chun, and marketing managers Royden Muranaka and Steven Hirashima make up our staffing contingent at this important meeting, which is attended by numerous UHP authors (and prospective authors) of Asian studies titles.
Below is the current lineup of author appearances scheduled for the coming weeks—including a couple already past—mostly for our Hawai‘i-related titles. Unless otherwise noted, these events are free and the public is invited to attend; books will be available for sale and signing.
Wednesday, March 15, 3:30 to 5:30 pm, at the Faculty Center, Chaminade University, 201 Eiben Hall
Chapter contributors Jonathan Dial, Bianca Isaki, and Brian Richardson will speak on the issues addressed in Tourism Impacts West Maui, the latest book from North Beach-West Maui Benefit Fund Inc., distributed by UH Press.
Thursday, March 23, 2017, 7:00 pm, Ciné in Athens, Georgia (234 W Hancock Avenue)
UH Mānoa creative writing professor Rodney Morales heads to the Deep South to do a reading of his latest novel, For A Song. His visit is hosted by the University of Georgia Creative Writing Program and books will be sold by Avid Bookshop.
Saturday, March 25, three separate events in Kamuela and Hilo on the Big Island of Hawai‘i
Dr. Billy Bergin and his son Dr. Brady Bergin, both respected equine veterinarians, will do a marathon book launch and signings for their new book, The Hawaiian Horse. The schedule and locations include:
Saturday, April 1, starting at 2:00 pm, Hawaii Japanese Center, Hilo (751 Kanoelehua Avenue)
Hawaii Japanese Center, in partnership with the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i, presents a program based around author Barbara Kawakami and her recent book, Picture Bride Stories, which was recently announced as the winner of the Asian/Pacific American Librarians (APALA) Literature Award for adult nonfiction (the award will be presented in June) . The HJC program will include a dance performance of holehole bushi and a screening of excerpts from the Rice & Roses television series that previously aired on PBS Hawai‘i. See complete details on the HJC flyer.
Thursday, April 13, 12 noon to 1:15 pm, Kuykendall Hall 410, UH Mānoa
At this Brown Bag series sponsored by the Center for Biographical Research, David Hanlon‘s talk, “‘You Did What, Mr. President?!?!’ Writing a Biography of the Federated States of Micronesia’s Tosiwa Nakayama” explores his work behind Making Micronesia.
Saturday, February 18, 3:00 to 5:00 pm, Eastwind Books of Berkeley (2066 University Avenue)
At this venerable independent bookshop, Lillian Howan will discuss and read from her debut novel, The Charm Buyers. Set in 1990s Tahiti during the last years of French nuclear testing in the Pacific, the book has been praised by early reviewers as “gorgeous,” “sensuous,” and “hynoptic” (see the blurbs under the “reviews” tab on the UH Press web page). A review scheduled to appear in the March/April issue of Foreword Reviews says, in part: “Howan’s language is breathtaking, building a land and family with detail and power. . . . The Charm Buyers is a thought-provoking insight into a time of cultural change. It captures an essence of existing between reality and surreality, dreaming and wakefulness, the past and the future.”
At this Brown Bag talk sponsored by the Center for Biographical Research, Michael Tsai, author of The People’s Race Inc.: Behind the Scenes at the Honolulu Marathon, discusses his melding of journalistic and life-writing approaches as well as the expected and unexpected challenges of dealing with living subjects. Tsai is a Kapi‘olani Community College instructor and Honolulu Star-Advertiser columnist and reporter.
For the Spring 2017 Brown Bag schedule of speakers, click here.
At Whales Tales 2017, presented by Whale Trust Maui, marine biologist Robin Baird speaks about his ocean fieldwork with Cascadia Research Collective and the results covered in his book, The Lives of Hawai‘i’s Dolphins and Whales: Natural History and Conservation. These include findings from years of research using satellite tagging, genetics, and photo identification to study resident whales and dolphins in Hawai‘i. Dr. Baird’s February 14 illustrated talk at the Waikiki Aquarium elicited numerous questions from the audience, leading to answers with more fascinating facts on these ocean mammals.
At the 50th annual Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) Conference & Book Fair, held this week in Washington, DC, stop by booth 791 and say aloha to the editors of MĀNOA: A Pacific Journal of International Writing as you browse University of Hawai‘i Press publications. Among the UH Press books and journals on display will be MĀNOA‘s latest issues: Curve of the Hook, The Color of Dawn, and Story Is a Vagabond; information on the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa English Department creative writing program will be distributed as well.
For a Song by Rodney Morales
The Healers by Kimo Armitage
Five Faces of Japanese Feminism: Crimson and Other Works by Ineko Sata, translated by Samuel Perry
Murder Frames the Scene by Victoria Kneubuhl
The Confessions of a Number One Son: The Great Chinese American Novel by Frank Chin, edited by Calvin McMillin
The book fair opens on the morning of Thursday, February 9 and closes the afternoon of Saturday, February 11.
Click here to see more about AWP, now the largest literary conference in North America.
An article in JSTOR Daily by Juliet Lamb shares some of Mark Rauzon’s perspectives about the 1960s Pacific Ocean Biological Survey Program expedition to remote US islands in the Pacific. Rauzon explores the history of this and other little-known incidents in his recent book, Isles of Amnesia: The History, Geography, and Restoration of America’s Forgotten Pacific Islands.
“Biologist Mark Rauzon, who spent many years studying documents related to the Pacific Project, has come to understand that the scientists themselves may have been guinea pigs for defense tests. Over fifty germ warfare tests were conducted in the Pacific during the 1960s, with substances ranging from harmless bacteria to rabbit fever. In the course of the tests, passengers on Pacific Project ships, which transported both military personnel and associated biologists, were exposed to harsh chemical cleansers, and the “harmless” bacteria have since been linked to a variety of debilitating conditions. Veterans who suffered adverse effects have been unsuccessful in requesting government compensation. Though no POBSP personnel have reported health effects, many may have been exposed. Rauzon’s efforts led to the release of many of the military’s documents related to the project, but complete records may never be provided.”
Read more on this in Rauzon’s 2006 essay, “Live Ammo: Testing of Biochemical Agents on U.S. Sailors,” that appeared in The Asia-Pacific Journal.
Isles of Amnesia makes Library Journal‘s 2016 top 20 bestselling books on biology.
Isles of Amnesia:
The History, Geography, and Restoration of America’s Forgotten Pacific Islands
by Mark J. Rauzon
A Latitude 20 Book | 2016 | 288 pages | 71 b&w illus.
Paperback | ISBN 978-0-8248-4679-4 | $24.99