Thursday, May 28, 2009

RIP Ronald Takaki

I am shocked and saddened, having just learned of the death of Ronald Takaki. What a great and brilliant man. What a progressive voice. He was one of the firmest apponents to the effort to end affirmative action in California. He was also one of the most brilliant and profound scholars in the field of ethnic studies. What a loss... Here is the posting from Portside...

Professor Emeritus Ronald Takaki passed away on the evening of May
26th, 2009. Ron Takaki was one of the most preeminent scholars of
our nation's diversity, and considered "the father" of multicultural
studies. As an academic, historian, ethnographer and author, his work
helped dispel stereotypes of Asian Americans. In his study of
multicultural people's history in America, Takaki seeked to unite
Americans, today and in the future, with each other and with the rest
of the world.

He was a professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of California,
Berkeley, where he taught over 20,000 students during 34 years of teaching.

Born in 1939, Professor Takaki was the grandson of immigrant Japanese
plantation workers in Hawaii. He graduated from the College of
Wooster, Ohio, in 1961. Six years later, after receiving his Ph.D. in
American history from UC Berkeley, Takaki went to UCLA to teach its
first Black history course.

In 1972, Professor Takaki returned to Berkeley to teach in the newly
instituted Department of Ethnic Studies. His comparative approach to
the study of race and ethnicity provided the conceptual framework for
the B.A. program and the Ph.D. program in Comparative Ethnic Studies
as well as for the university's multicultural requirement for
graduation, known as the American Cultures Requirement. The Berkeley
faculty has honored Professor Takaki with a Distinguished Teaching Award.

Takaki has lectured in Japan, Russia, Armenia, New Zealand, the
Netherlands, Austria, and South Africa. He has debated Nathan Glazer
and Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. on issues such as affirmative action and
multicultural education.

Professor Takaki wrote 12 books. Iron Cages: Race and Culture in 19th
Century America has been critically acclaimed. Strangers from a
Different Shore: A History of Asian Americans has been selected by
the San Francisco Chronicle as one of the best 100 non-fiction books
of the 20th century, and A Different Mirror: A History of
Multicultural America is read on college campuses across the country
and has over half a million copies in print.
I am reading Shirley MacLaine's Going Within, which I have picked through off and on for a few months now. I am very fascinated by the concept of frequencies. Shirley says that if Pianos played at a higher frequency, they would produce colors instead of sound....I wonder if someone could perhaps compose a symphony that correlates to the frequencies of colors...a red symphony... The universe is a complex, wondrous place....

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Republicans are soo trying to scrounge up something against Sotomayor. I hope she is appointed soon!
Dick Cheney should drop and go to hell. Please let him fall off the face of the earth. Soon. Magnet to the defibrilator!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sonia Sotomayor

I am looking forward to learning more about President Obama's Supreme Court nominee. I hope she is another Ruth Bader Ginsberg!

From Salt Publishing

Hello, All,

Many of you have done this already. As I'm sure you've heard, Salt Publishing (like many other small publishers) is having financial difficulties. Would you please consider adding something about Salt's "Just One Book" campaign to your blogs. If everyone who loves poetry buys just one Salt book, they'll be saved.

Here's the note directly from Chris Hamilton-Emery:

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

As many of you will know, Jen and I have been struggling to keep Salt moving since June last year when the economic downturn began to affect our press. Our three year funding ends this year: we've £4,000 due from Arts Council England in a final payment, but cannot apply through Grants for the Arts for further funding for Salt's operations. Spring sales were down nearly 80% on the previous year, and despite April's much improved trading, the past twelve months has left us with a budget deficit of over £55,000. It's proving to be a very big hole and we're having to take some drastic measures to save our business.

Here's how you can help us to save Salt and all our work with hundreds of authors around the world.


1. Please buy just one book, right now. We don't mind from where, you can buy it from us or from Amazon, your local shop or megastore, online or offline. If you buy just one book now, you'll help to save Salt. Timing is absolutely everything here. We need cash now to stay afloat. If you love literature, help keep it alive. All it takes is just one book sale. Go to our online store and help us keep going.

2. Share this note on your profile. Tell your friends. If we can spread the word about our cash crisis, we can hopefully find more sales and save our literary publishing. Remember it's just one book, that's all it takes to save us. Please do it now.

With my best wishes to everyone
Salt Publishing

Thanks so much!