Publishing clearinghouse: ‘Decolonizing Wealth’; ‘Bluest Eye’; ‘Lifeworlds of Islam’; ‘Popular Print Culture’

Book events

Director & Friends Book Study: “The Bluest Eye”
4-6 p.m. Dec. 6, 4303 Posvar Hall

Center for Urban Education director T. Elon Dancy II, Camika Royal and Khirsten Scott will lead a book study examining Toni Morrison's “The Bluest Eye,” discussing what shapes our thinking about urban(ized) educational realities, including those at play in the persistent school banning of the book. Broadly, we will remember and honor Morrison as a literary oracle and prophetic education thinker. A free copy of the book will be provided to the first 50 registrants. Register here:


“Decolonizing Wealth: How Indigenous Wisdom Can Help Philanthropy Heal Divides” by Edgar Villanueva
3:30-5 p.m. Dec. 9, University Club, Ballroom B

Much of the wealth fueling institutional philanthropy in the 20th century in Pittsburgh came from family fortunes gained through extractive industries, basic manufacturing or investments related to both. Author and philanthropic leader Edgar Villanueva traces the roots of these fortunes to lands, resources and rights appropriated from Native people and original inhabitants. He likens the philanthropy resulting from these fortunes as mirror images of the colonial power structures that undermined the welfare of indigenous people and the earth we share. Advising funders to recognize and redress these past wrongs, he urges philanthropists to treat this money as healing medicine.

New books

“Lifeworlds of Islam: The Pragmatics of a Religion” (Oxford University Press, 2019) by Mohammed Bamyeh, professor and chair, Department of Sociology, Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences

The book shows that Islam has typically operated not in the form of standard dogmas, but more often as a compass for practical individual orientations or “lifeworlds.” Through a comprehensive sociological analysis of Islam, the book maps out how Muslims have employed the faith to foster global networks, public philosophies, and engaged civic lives both historically and in the present.


“US Popular Print Culture to 1860, vol. 5, The Oxford History of Popular Print Culture” (Oxford University Press, 2019), co-edited by Ronald J. Zboray, professor of communication, director of the Graduate Program in Cultural Studies, Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences, and Mary Saracino Zboray, visiting scholar in communication

This volume contains 40 essays by scholars, including the Zborays, as well as Pitt Professors Jean Ferguson Carr and Stephen L. Carr from Department of English. It takes a broad, interdisciplinary approach to publishing, distribution and reading practices that date from the earliest Native American productions, including birch bark scrolls and petroglyphs, to the beginnings of the mass-entertainment dime novel industry just prior to the American Civil War. To emphasize the diversity which characterized American society and culture before 1860, the boook includes chapters on “Black Engagement with Print,” “Black Slave Narratives,” “Catholic Publishing,” “Native Imprints and Readers,” “Spanish Language Publications,” and “Women Writers and Readers.” The book introduces new ways of thinking about print in relation to pictographic, oral and text-based communications, and it centers print culture within the wide scope of historical people’s everyday practices.


The University Times welcomes information about new books, journals, plays and musical compositions written or edited by faculty and staff.

Newly published works can be submitted through this link. Please keep the book descriptions short and accessible to a general audience.

Journals should be peer-reviewed. Self-published works will not be accepted. The listings also are restricted to complete works, because individual chapters, articles, works of art and poems would be too numerous.

We’ll also be highlighting some books and book talks with connections to Pitt.

If you have any questions, please contact editor Susan Jones at or 412-648-4294.