Bridgewater Review is now in its third decade as the premier showcase of scholarly work by BSU faculty and librarians. Over that time it has gone through changes yet has always managed to hold to a high standard while bringing readers research papers, book reviews, artwork and more.
History Professor Andrew Holman was named editor in January 2012. He’d previously worked with the previous editors, Drs. William Levin and Michael Kryzanek, both longtime BSU faculty members.
Now that Dr. Holman has entered his second year at the helm of the Review, with assistance from associate editors Drs. Ellen Scheible and Brian Payne, we thought it would be a good time to sit down for a chat.
Q: Why is it important to have a Review?
A: It bridges a gap in the channels through which faculty members and librarians express themselves. We express ourselves in the public research we do in journals and books, and we do so in class in the ways in which we show our expertise to students. Yet outside the good work that CARS does, and some departmental symposia, we don’t speak to each other nearly enough about what we do. Given that, what BR does is to allow for scholarly ideas to be expressed to one another, whether in research or teaching, in a format that doesn’t get bogged down with footnotes and other scholarly apparatus, but allows for deep thinking and serious discussion about the ideas that move us and motivate us as scholars.
Q: How did you become the new editor?
A: In my first or second year here I was asked to write something for BR and I ended up writing about the 130th birthday of Canada and about the country’s future. After that, in the early 2000s, I was asked if I’d care to be an associate editor, and I jumped at the opportunity. I like to write and edit other people’s work and enjoy recruiting new material for the magazine. So, I guess it was one of those things that when Bill (Levin) decided to retire, it fell to me and I was pleased to take it.
Q: What have you learned in your year as editor?
A: It really taught me about the tremendous breadth of the academic talents and interests among our faculty members and librarians. I’m very thankful for that. It’s also daunting. It’s my job to capture that depth of the university’s intellectual capital. I hope I can do it justice.
Q: What is the vision for the future of the Review?
I think job number one is to maintain and strengthen what we already do and never lose sight that the transmission and conveyance of scholarly thinking among faculty is really our main job. The second thing we need to do is embrace the technology that’s out there. For some time now BR has been featured on the BSU website as a pdf file. We’d like to use our new position on virtual commons to encourage feedback and debate about the articles we feature. We want to let faculty members know we’re interested in their work, but also what they think of their colleague’s work. And it will become another dynamic locus for faculty development on campus.
Q: Any final thoughts?
A: I’d like to emphasize that BR is for all of us. And comments as well as submissions are very welcome indeed, so faculty member and librarians shouldn’t wait for an invitation to submit their work. We’re interested in having as wide participation as possible in all disciplines. (Interview and photo by John Winters, G ’11, University Advancement)