The wise – digitized
New online resource makes hundreds of UC Press titles freely available

22 January 2003 |

A cornucopia of academic texts from the University of California Press is now online, to the delight of scholars and inveterate browsers alike. In partnership with the California Digital Library, UC Press has launched a website making hundreds of titles from its backlist available to UC faculty, students, and staff, as well as (in many cases) the general public.

The UC Press eScholarship Editions (which are browsable and fully searchable at represent “the largest collection of university press books available to date in electronic form,” according to UC Press Director Lynne E. Withey. That they are available free of charge, users will no doubt find, only adds to the value of this innovative resource.

More than 650 UC Press books are already digitized and posted to the website, with many more in the pipeline. (The site’s developers say that more than 1,500 titles — nearly half of all UC Press titles in print — will be available by the fall.) Users can search and browse by title, author, or subject; search within titles for specific words or phrases (a search on the word “Elvis” returned 27 titles, ranging from a biography of Jeanette MacDonald to an anthropological study of “anger and aggression in aboriginal Australia”); and even buy a hard copy of individual books directly from UC Press.

“This project is a fantastic example of a dynamic collaboration between the CDL and UC Press — one that we expect will produce many more projects in the months to come,” said CDL Director and University Librarian Daniel Greenstein. “UC Press provides an imprimatur that is highly regarded by scholars around the world. It lends credibility to and encourages the use of new modes of scholarly publishing enabled by the CDL’s services.”

As the excerpts below (from work by past and current Berkeley faculty and staff) demonstrate, many of the authors whose works are now available online are not only academicians of the first rank, but in many cases fine prose stylists as well.

Even as students and faculty make earnest use of the powerful search capabilities of this site, more casual readers will find much to reward their serendiptious browsing through the virtual stacks of this online library.

Click below for selected excerpts:


Insider/Outsider: American Jews and Multiculturalism
Snakes: The Evolution of Mystery in Nature
A Skeptic Among Scholars: August Frugé on University Publishing
Iconography of Power: Soviet Political Posters Under Lenin and Stalin
For Love of the Automobile: Looking Back into the History of Our Desires


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