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Open Stacks

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Open Stacks

The Seminary Co-op Bookstores & UChicago Podcast Network

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Open Stacks brings you conversations with scholars, poets, novelists and activists on subjects as eclectic as the books on our shelves, from under-the-radar debates in the academy to pressing contemporary social issues, and from bestselling works of fiction to avant-garde poetics. Recorded live at Chicago's Seminary Co-op Bookstores, Open Stacks invites listeners to sit in on the kind of candid discussions and lively debates made possible by the participation of readers in a public space, wi ...
 
WritersCast is the voice of writers. Host David Wilk interviews authors of new and forthcoming fiction, poetry and non-fiction books, talking with them about their work as writers, the stories they tell, the subjects they write about and the books they write. Writers reveal the thoughts and ideas behind their writing, and talk about a wide variety of topics of interest to their readers.
 
The World Beyond the Headlines series is a collaborative project of the Center for International Studies, the International House Global Voices Program, and the Seminary Co-op Bookstores and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Its aim is to bring scholars and journalists together to consider major international issues and how they are covered in the media.
 
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On this episode, authors, publishers, editors and booksellers reflect on the value of their work, and what it takes to make a great bookstore thrive. Plus, an out-of-the-way reading list from our bookseller Mrittika: queer historical fiction... thrillers. For more from the voices you hear in this episode, a list of books mentioned, music credits, a…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time talking with people in the book industry about how publishing is evolving in the context of technology, culture, and economics. Some time…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the years talking with people in the book industry about how publishing has evolved in the context of technology, cul…
 
This time on Open Stacks we hear from Philip Leventhal, editor at Columbia University Press and veteran Co-opian, about the history of the famous Front Table catalog, in its print and digital forms. Then we head to the Front Table (the actual table) for some recent titles on underground transformation. Philip Leventhal is Senior Editor at Columbia …
 
On this episode of Open Stacks with Katarzyna Bartoszyńska and Reuben Jonathan Miller, we trace paths between: academia and bookselling; Poland and Ireland; animal navigation and interpersonal knowledge; the inside and the outside of the American prison. For a complete list of books mentioned in this episode, music credits, and supplementary materi…
 
The Terrible Unlikelihood of Our Being Here – Susanne Paola Antonetta – 978-0-8142-5780-7 – 248 pages – paperback – February, 2021 – Mad Creek Books – $22.95 – ebook editions available at lower prices Sometimes one literally chances across a terrific book; it appears unbidden and takes over one’s complete attention. A surprise appearance in the dai…
 
On this episode of Open Stacks, books from the land of the ice and snow, from the midnight sun, where the hot springs flow. In the middle of the Summer, a stack of Front Table books from the heart(s) of Winter. Thanks to bookseller Joey for sharing a favorite passage from Roberto Bolaño's The Savage Detectives. If you want to share something you re…
 
On this episode of Open Stacks: a prismatic exploration of new releases at the Front Table, an editorial dialogue with Elizabeth Branch Dyson and Eve Ewing, and Ann Kjellberg on a life in publishing, Joseph Brodsky, and how serious books connect us to one another and the world. Elizabeth Branch Dyson is Assistant Editorial Director and Executive Ed…
 
Darrow’s Nightmare: The Forgotten Story of America’s Most Famous Trial Lawyer (Los Angeles 1911–1913) – Nelson Johnson – 9781948122733 – 360 pages – April 20, 2021 – Hardcover – Rosetta Books – ebook editions available at lower prices One of the great personal joys that working in the book business enables is that I get to work with authors. I’ve d…
 
On this episode of Open Stacks, a circle around the Co-op’s Front Table: from a post-war pioneer of Afrofuturism on Chicago’s South Side to the complex communal powers of games like spades, mahjong, and pickup soccer. Thanks to Bryce Lucas for taking us on a tour of the Front Table this time. In this episode, you hear fragments of archival recordin…
 
On this episode of Open Stacks, we celebrate the Co-op reopening its doors for in-person browsing – the first time since we closed 15 months ago. Browsers, booksellers, authors, and our own Clancey D'Isa and Bryce Lucas discuss the transfiguration of space, absence and presence, the "invisible" work of bookselling, and how reading needn't be a solo…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time talking with people in the book industry about how publishing is evolving in the context of technology, culture, and economics. Some time…
 
In this episode, Alena takes a tour around the Front Table, guided by Bryce Lucas, manager of 57th Street Books. Circling the table, they move from bald philosophy to the physics of crumpled paper, from an Icelandic fisheries museum to the shifting nature of observation itself. Have a perspective to share? We'll be featuring listeners' voices throu…
 
Rural Rebellion: How Nebraska Became a Republican Stronghold – Ross Benes – 9780700630455 – hardcover – University Press of Kansas – 256 pages – $29.95 – January 26, 2021 – ebook versions available at lower prices Ross Benes is a journalist and author who now lives in New York City. But he was born and raised in a tiny town in Nebraska. That experi…
 
In this first episode of the fourth season, we sit down with Elizabeth Branch Dyson, assistant editorial director and executive editor at the University of Chicago Press, to hear how she approaches acquiring widely accessible books for an academic press. Bryce (manager of 57th Street Books) takes us on a tour around the Co-op's Front Table, checkin…
 
Rediscovering Earth: Ten Dialogues on the Future of Nature – conversations with Anders Dunker – OR Books – 9781682195086 – Paperback – 240 pages – $23 – ebook versions available at lower prices Thinking about how to think about climate, earth, humans on it, and the future, are major challenges for all of us who care about the future of our planet. …
 
The FBI Way: Inside the Bureau’s Code of Excellence – Frank Figliuzzi – 9780062997050 – hardcover – HarperCollins – 272 pages – $27.99 – January 12, 2021 – ebook versions available at lower prices If you have been paying attention to the news for the five years since the US elevated Donald J. Trump to the presidency of the United States, with the h…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time in conversation with people in and around the book industry talking about its evolution in the contexts of technology, culture, and economics. La…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time talking with people in the book industry about how publishing is evolving in the context of technology, culture, and economics. Later thi…
 
Unworthy Republic: The Dispossession of Native Americans and the Road to Indian Territory – Claudio Saunt – 97800393541564 – paperback – W.W. Norton – 416 pages – $26.95 – February 23, 2021 – ebook versions available at lower prices This is a book that should be required reading for all Americans. Even those of us who think we know the story of the…
 
The Brothers Mankiewicz: Hope, Heartbreak, and Hollywood Classics – Sydney Ladensohn Stern- 9781617032677 – University Press of Mississippi – 480 pages – 88 b&w illustrations – October 2019 – Hardcover – $35 – ebook version available at lower prices There are any number of characters and influencers in the history of modern American film-making, bu…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time talking with people in the book industry about how publishing is evolving in the context of technology, culture, and economics. Some time…
 
Surviving Genocide: Native Nations and the United States from the American Revolution to Bleeding Kansas – Jeffrey Ostler – 9780300255362 – Yale University Press – Paperback – 544 pages – September 22, 2020 – $25 – ebook versions available at lower prices “A landmark book essential to understanding American history, Surviving Genocide is an act of …
 
Even as We Breathe, A Novel – Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle – 9781950564064 – University Press of Kentucky – Hardcover – 240 pages – September 2020 – $24.95 – ebook versions available for sale at lower prices This has been a good year to read fiction, and I am really pleased to have discovered this author. She is a fine writer whose storytelling is p…
 
American Gospel, A Novel – Lin Enger – 978-1-5179-1054-9 – University of Minnesota Press – Hardcover – 248 pages – October 27, 2020 – $24.95 – ebook versions available for sale at lower prices I read Lin Enger’s last novel, High Divide, a few years ago and was really taken with his writing and the mythic fictional structures he loves to tell. Story…
 
The Vanishing Sky (A Novel) – L. Annette Binder – 9781635574678 – Bloomsbury Publishing – Hardcover – 288 pages – July 21, 2020 – $27.00 – ebook versions for sale at lower prices I did not know what to expect when I started reading The Vanishing Sky. Initially, I was looking forward to reading a book that did not focus on the victims of Nazi German…
 
Why We Revolt: A Patient Revolution for Careful and Kind Care – Victor Montori, MD – 9781893005624 – Mayo Clinic Press – paperback – 192 pages – $14.99 – September 29, 2020 – ebook versions available at lower prices Victor Montori is an incredibly empathetic and kind clinician, whose commitment to creating a better form of health care than we have …
 
A couple years ago, in the process of researching the mostly unknown and under-appreciated New Yorker writer Robert M. Coates, I reached out to Roger Angell, who knew Coates during his many years of writing for and working at The New Yorker (and whose mother, Katharine Sergeant Angell White, and stepfather, E.B. White, knew Coates well from the ear…
 
Mating in Captivity: A Memoir – Helen Zuman – 9781631523373 – She Writes Press – paperback – 248 pages – May 8, 2018 – $16.95 – ebook versions for sale at lower prices When I was in my younger hippie Whole Earth Catalog reading period of life, I became intensely interested in communes and alternative social structures, what are now often called “In…
 
Blackwood: A Novel – Michael Farris Smith – 9780316529815 – Little Brown – Hardcover – 256 pages – March 3, 2020 – $27.00 – ebook versions for sale at lower prices This is pretty much a stunningly written book. I discovered the writing of Michael Farris Smith serendipitously through the southern culture magazine, Garden & Gun. I read a short piece …
 
Crooked Hallelujah – Kelli Jo Ford – 978-0-8021-4912-1 – Grove Press – Hardcover – 304 pages – July 14, 2020 – $26.00 – ebook versions available at lower prices. Kelli Jo Ford’s novel is a deeply rewarding read. Comparisons to the work of Louise Erdrich are inevitable and unavoidable (and Kelli Jo mentioned Louise in our conversation as one of her …
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. I’ve spent time talking with people in the book industry about how publishing is evolving in the context of technology, culture, and economics. Some time…
 
At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life – Fenton Johnson- 9780393608298 – W.W. Norton – Hardcover – 256 pages – March 10, 2020 – $26.95 – ebook versions available at lower prices So much of the pleasure of conducting this podcast for all these years has been (and continues to be) the discovery of new writers and books, that so d…
 
Publishing Talks began as a series of conversations with book industry professionals and others involved in media and technology, mostly talking about the future of publishing, books, and culture. As every media business continues to experience disruption and change, I’ve spent time talking with some of the people involved in our industry about how…
 
Actress: A Novel – Anne Enright – 978-1-324-00562-9 – W.W. Norton – Hardcover – 272 pages – March 3, 2020 – $26.95 – eBook version available at lower prices I think it is pretty safe to say that Anne Enright is one of the best writers of our time. Her writing is so well done that you don’t notice her deft ability to portray characters and tell thei…
 
The King at the Edge of the World – Arthur Phillips – 9780812995480 – Random House – Hardcover- 288 pages – $27.00 – February 11, 2020. Ebooks available at lower prices. At Writerscast, there is a strict rule that I only talk to authors whose books I like. So every book that appears here is one that I truly enjoyed reading. Given that fact, it is i…
 
Be Kind: You Can Make the World a Happier Place! 125 Kind Things to Say & Do – Naomi Shulman – Illustrated by Hsinping Pan – Storey Publishing – 9781635861549 – Hardcover – $12.99 – June 25, 2019 – ebooks available at lower prices. I learned about Naomi Shulman because of something she wrote a few years ago that has circulated widely. What she said…
 
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