Please join us in congratulating John B. Hench, retired vice president for collections and programs at AAS. His recent book, Books as Weapons: Propaganda, Publishing, and the Battle for Global Markets in the Era of World War II, was awarded the 2010 George A. and Jean S. DeLong Book History Book Prize from the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing (SHARP).
In awarding the prize, the committee described Books as Weapons as follows:
In a breathtaking history of wartime editions, this book presents a rich history of a relatively brief period in American publishing. . . . This is a book about war but it is also a book about the diplomacy of books. As an international and comparative history of wartime publishing, it presents deeply contextualized accounts, offering multiple contemporary perspectives, a true mark of scholarship that constructs the book trade as an international phenomenon. It will for sure make its mark in many fields, but it is deeply embedded in our own.
John B. Hench worked at AAS for 33 years beginning as editor of publications in 1973. In addition to writing Books as Weapons: Propaganda, Publishing, and the Battle for Global Markets in the Era of World War II (2010), Hench also co-edited The Press and the American Revolution (1981) and Printing and Society in Early America (1983). The Hench Post-Dissertation Fellowship at AAS was named in honor of him upon his retirement from the Society.