From 2001 through 2014, the Association supported a program that compiled bibliographies of the best research from university presses on topics in the news. Books for Understanding was launched in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attacks, when a member press noticed that a backlist scholarly title on terrorism was garnering significant renewed attention. In pulling together a reading list from all members that month, the community established a template for a free public resource that illustrated one of the most significant values a university press brings to the world—the tools to understand.
More than 50 reading lists were published between 2001 and 2014, when the program went dormant. The world events and topics we provided these resources about ranged from elections to Hurricane Katrina, from Haiti to the Ukraine. While currently dormant, AUPresses continues to look forward to the day that Books for Understanding can be reinvigorated, with a technological infrastructure that can support a responsive public education program.
Browse the Books for Understanding lists at www.booksforunderstanding.org.