venue was HotHouse, the jazz, world music, and performing arts space around the
corner from the Chicago Hilton and Towers, where the American Sociological Association
was holding its annual meetings. The late-summer night was young, and the evening's
star was a drummer-being honored for 25 years at his day job as an editor with
the University of Chicago Press.
that quarter century Douglas Mitchell, AB'65, has, by Press director Paula
Duffy's count, shepherded 750 titles into print. His range is as phenomenal as
the numbers: classics, biography, law, political science, literature, philosophy,
history, sociology, gay studies, and about "200 other titles that defy categorization."
editor Doug Mitchell: 750 titles and counting.|
himself defies categorization, but that didn't keep 125 or so of his grateful
authors from trying. They joked about his signature beard ("You only have
to take one look at Doug, and you know he was born in the wrong century").
They remarked on his work ethic and the resulting paper trail (an assistant editor
once passed on the baton to a successor with the advice "Doug needs to be
stopped"). They described his dedication to his authors (a teacher turned
editor, "Doug just continued to be a teacher by choosing this career").
And they described his influence on a discipline ("Forget about Marx, Durkheim,
Weber, or their epigone; Doug Mitchell has influenced the direction of late-20th-century
American sociology more than almost anyone else").
show their gratitude for years of lunches, dinners, and encouragement, Mitchell's
authors, at the suggestion of Northwestern sociology professor Gary A. Fine, collaborated
on a gift to fill a rare hole in their editor's experience, chipping in to present
Doug and wife Chris with two guidebooks-and their first trip to Paris.
it was his turn on stage, Mitchell began with mock sternness. "Many of you
are late with your manuscripts," he announced to rueful laughter. "We
have locked the doors, and we have computers in the back room. You're not leaving
until you're done." Then he got serious, thanking everyone for the gifts
and for the event, a chance to witness the community he
has helped to create: "I've never seen you all together before."
over, it was on to the next hot spot-and a chance to sample what the HotHouse
emcee, Chicago sociology chair and Mitchell author Andrew Abbott, AM'75, PhD'82,
billed as "the real Mitchell experience. It's Sunday night, and every Sunday
night, Doug's at Jimmy's, playing the drums."
year, another look
A note to birdwatchers: yes, the
phoenix has been retired from the Magazine's cover (although it continues to roost
in "Chicago Journal").
issue, the start of the Magazine's 95th volume year, we introduce a new look.
We celebrated our 90th year in similar fashion, with the same architect, Allen
Carroll. Allen's other job is chief cartographer for the National Geographic Society,
which may explain why he maps out our pages so seamlessly. Helping the editors
translate Allen's sense of direction is graphic designer Joy Miller, and our redesigned
Web site is the work of Ryan Nagdeman. Let us know what you think.