Monday, December 5, 2011

HEB Best Sellers, Fall 2011

ACLS Humanities E-Book recently reported and paid its latest round of royalties to our participating publishers and individual authors. Below we once again list the top ten most frequently hit titles in our collection of over 3,300 titles for this latest royalty period.

Several titles from previous periods remain in the top ten: Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (Verso) is again in first place; Henry Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (NYU Press), Anne McClintock’s Imperial Leather: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest (Routledge), John W. Dower's War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War (Pantheon), and Clifford Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays (Basic Books) have all previously appeared on this list.

Among the new entries rounding out this diverse roster of classic and contemporary works, history, cultural studies, gender studies, as well as race and ethnicity clearly remain of interest to HEB subscribers. One new addition is George Chauncey, Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Makings of the Gay Male World, 1890-1940 (Basic Books), perhaps also reflecting a growing interest in LGBT studies among humanistic scholars. HEB will in fact be adding to its list of LGBT/Queer Studies titles in the coming year, one of several areas we are in the process of expanding.

  1. Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (Verso, 2006)
  2. Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (New York University Press, 2006)
  3. Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays (Basic Books, 1973)
  4. McClintock, Imperial Leather: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest (Routledge, 1995)
  5. Dower, War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War (Pantheon, 1993)
  6. Sugrue, The Origins of the Urban Crisis: Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit (Princeton University Press, 1996)
  7. McPherson, Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford University Press, 1988)
  8. Chauncey, Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Makings of the Gay Male World, 1890-1940 (Basic Books, 1994)
  9. Hourani, Arabic Thought in the Liberal Age, 1798-1939 (Cambridge University Press, 1983)
  10. Pomeroy, Goddesses, Whores, Wives, and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity (Schocken Books, 1995)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

HEB Launches New Handheld Editions Program

The first titles from HEB's online collection converted for use with handheld devices are now available for purchase from various distributors. Among this initial set are a number of seminal works now out-of-print and out-of-copyright—and often hard to find—which we are making available in an affordable downloadable edition, such as William Bradford, Bradford's History of Plymouth Plantation, 1620-1647; George Dangerfield, The Strange Death of Liberal England; Edward E. Evans-Pritchard, The Sanusi of Cyrenaica; John Hobson, Imperialism: A Study; Hubert Jedin's History of the Council of Trent, Volumes I and II; Joseph Levenson, Confucian China and Its Modern Fate: A Trilogy; M. Rostovtzeff's Social and Economic History of the Roman Empire, Volumes I and II; and Frederick Winslow Taylor, Scientific Management, Comprising Shop Management.

We will be offering additional titles for use with mobile devices and posting details about our handheld editions program on our website in the near future. Please stay tuned.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

New on HEB: The English Institute's Work of Genre

HEB is pleased to announce the release of our latest XML title, The Work of Genre, edited by Robyn Warhol and published by The English Institute in collaboration with ACLS. This represents the second born-digital installment in the English Institute's ongoing series of publications derived from its annual conferences and comprises selected papers from the 2009 conference held at Harvard University. (For more information the launch of this digital series and its initial installment, On Periodization, please see the following link.) This volume features seven essays, in addition to the editor's introduction, exploring questions such as: How do genres come into being, and what distinguishes them one from another? What do considerations of genre occlude, as well as reveal? What kinds of generic categories might be useful for critical analysis today?

HEB will continue to offer further installments of this series, edited by Meredith L. McGill of Rutgers University, on an annual basis.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

HEB Pricing for 2011-2012

ACLS Humanities E-Book is experiencing growing pains! This year, we have seen a dramatic increase in the size of the collection. With an average of 500 new titles added each year, the HEB program has now surpassed 3,300 titles of recognized high quality in the humanities. HEB just celebrated its 10th anniversary, passing the 1 million page mark!

Our growth reflects the popularity of HEB’s list and the continual improvement in content, search and access. The collection has expanded to include the highest-quality work in anthropology, linguistics, film and media studies, as well as sociology and philosophy. Additionally, HEB will continue to seek the best works in the humanities to create the most robust collection available in one package.

HEB will be making only moderate price increases this year, continuing to offer the most cost-effective resource in the humanities today. These price increases (effective as of August 1, 2011) are necessary to manage the growth in our operation, ongoing expansion of content and list development. As HEB has not raised its subscription rates in nearly five years, this reflects greater value based on the rapidly expanding list offered to its members. HEB continues to maintain competitive pricing despite the exponential growth of the collection. You can find our pricing on our website:

We continue to appreciate your loyalty and support of the ACLS Humanities E-Book program and its commitment to quality. And as always, we appreciate your feedback, thoughts and comments.

Drop us a line at:

Friday, July 1, 2011

New MARC Records, June 2011

ACLS Humanities E-Book has just added 291 books to its collection, bringing the total to 3,334 works across a wide range of disciplines and subject areas, including important new series from Cambridge University Press, Fordham University Press, and University of California Press. All current subscribers now have access to all of the new books added to the collection.

Cataloging records are available to HEB subscribers for download, including one zip file for the 542 new round 8 titles and a second zip file for all 3,334 titles in the collection. Instructions for obtaining these records are included below. As you know, it is very important to load the MARC records into your catalog as soon as possible, because most users become familiar with, and begin to access, the site from the library catalog.

As a reminder, the records are now in UTF-8 format, rather MARC-8 format as in previous releases. If you have any questions, please email us at 

New records for ACLS Humanities E-Book are available via your browser at

• If you are a new subscriber or if you have not recently updated your MARC records, you need to download (includes 3,149 records for all 3,334 books in rounds 1-8, online as of June 2011). 

• If you only need to add the new titles, and your records are up-to-date with the last download in March 2010, you simply need to download the file, which includes all 502 records for the 542 books added in April and June 2011.

PLEASE NOTE: The MARC records for our latest release, round 8, are in Unicode-UTF-8 format rather than the older MARC-8 format. To accommodate those subscribers not wishing to overwrite existing MARCs in a new format, we are making rounds 1-7 and round 8 available separately. However, for consistency, subscribers may want to download the cumulative file in the UTF-8 format.

Downloads each contain three files:
a. The records in MARC 21 communications format.
b. The same records in ASCII format.
c. A readme.txt in ASCII format (explains what is contained in each of the above).

There is a discrepancy between the number of records and the number of books in the collection due to the fact that multi-volume works have a single record. A complete set will include 3,071 records for 3,334 books.

Monday, May 23, 2011

HEB Best Sellers, Spring 2011

ACLS Humanities E-Book has just reported and paid its 17th round of royalties to more than 80 publishers and 170 individuals or their literary estates. This represents the results of nearly 6 million hits on the site over the past year. Once again, HEB presents its top-ten hit titles in the collection, which now has over 3,000 titles.

Attention focused on cultural studies, world history, nationalism, gender and urbanism. Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (Verso) remained in first place. Perennial bestseller Anne McClintock’s Imperial Leather: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest (Routledge) moved from second to third place, while John W. Dower's War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War (Pantheon) up to second place. 

University presses accounted for four of the ten titles, with one each from Stanford University Press, Harvard University Press, NYU Press and Oxford University Press.

Verso had two books in the top ten with City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles joining Imagined CommunitiesIn addition to Verso, commercial presses in the top ten included Pantheon, Routledge, Beacon and Basic Books.

Considering the changing nature of humanitistic scholarship, it is interesting to note that many of these titles are older works and classic works in their fields. For example, Imagined Communities is a revised edition (2006) of a work originally published in 1983 and Peasants into Frenchman: The Modernization of Rural France was published in 1976.

And here’s the list:

  1. Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (Verso, 2006)
  2. Dower, War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War (Pantheon, 1993)
  3. McClintock, Imperial Leather: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest (Routledge, 1995)
  4. Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (New York University Press, 2006)
  5. Richter, Facing East from Indian Country: A Native History of Early American (Harvard University Press, 2003)
  6. Weber, Peasants into Frenchmen: The Modernization of Rural France 1870-1914 (Stanford University Press, 1976)
  7. Polanyi, The Great Transformation (Beacon Press, 1957)
  8. Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays (Basic Books, 1973)
  9. Mokyr, The Lever of Riches: Technological Creativity and Economic Progress (Oxford University Press, 1990)
  10. Davis, City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles (Verso, 2006)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Growing Success of HEB Individual Subscriptions

ACLS Humanities E-Book is proud to announce that thirty-four of the seventy ACLS constituent societies are now represented among individual subscribers to the HEB collection. This includes societies of all sizes, ranging from 400 to 30,000 members. 

Since June 2009, HEB has offered members of all learned societies the ability to purchase individual subscriptions to the collection for just $35 for a 12-month subscription, which entitles the individual subscriber to the full text of over 3,300 fully cross-searchable titles across all fields in the humanities. Once a subscriber, members can access the collection from home, office or while traveling. 

More information about individual subscriptions is available at

Monday, April 11, 2011

HEB at ACRL 2011

HEB was an exhibitor at this year's ACRL conference in Philadelphia from March 31–April 1. A number of subscribers stopped by our booth to tell us that they value the collection and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them in the future.

During the meeting HEB was pleased to be able to report that we are currently in the process of creating handheld editions of an initial batch of around fifty titles from our online collection, slated for release in May or June. The books will be competitively priced and available for individual purchase from various online retailers. They will be the first of about 300 titles that HEB is placing into its handheld program in order to investigate the viability of this format for scholarly monographs and to test the efficiencies and costs of a replicable and scalable workflow. This project follows up on the findings of our survey and white paper devoted to the issue of scholarly monographs in handheld devices completed August 2010.

HEB discussed with subscribers and other interested librarians its prospective plans to offer titles for download to mobile/handheld devices. There is currently no provision for making downloadable titles available as part of a subscription package, since all content is already available to unlimited users online through our regular subscription terms. HEB sees the handheld as the digital equivalent to its POD (print-on-demand) program, that is, as another method of expanding its core online service to additional audiences and uses for those who desire such formats.

HEB also reviewed with librarians several new digital publishing initiatives currently in the planning stages or underway at various universities, university presses and other academic institutions. While many new publisher initiatives are planning the creation of extensive frontlist offerings for digital purchase, HEB remains committed to its role in providing an extensive, very reasonably priced, curated list of the highest-quality titles in the humanities that have passed the test of time and that will have greater assurance of access and use by library patrons. Through its rigorous peer-review process, coordinated with ACLS's seventy constituent learned societies, HEB will continue to offer the best of humanities scholarship in a single, not-for-profit platform for years to come.

Stay tuned for further developments on any of the above and keep up to date by visiting or subscribing to this blog.

Monday, March 7, 2011

HEB and the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA)

As part of its ongoing policy of urging the inter-institutional coordination of digital scholarly resources (see “Ten Years Later: The Future Is Past,” HEB News 3.2, Spring 2009), HEB was very pleased to be part of the initial Digital Public Library of America planning workshop in early March at Harvard University, hosted by the Berkman Center for Internet & Society.

The meeting included many key people from the world of digital humanities—including scholars, librarians and university presses—as well as people from public libraries and commercial interests.

There was a lively discussion on the content and scope of a potential DPLA, but this was just a first step in defining this bold initiative spearheaded by historian Robert Darnton. A report of the results of the first meeting can be found online at:

There is an opportunity to subscribe to the DPLA listserv at:

Professor Darnton's talk and article on DPLA ( will also be of interest to scholars and librarians concerned about our digital future.

Monday, February 7, 2011

HEB’s Fair-Use Policy

A thorough understanding of copyright and fair-use rights continues to be important to the work of students, scholars and authors. HEB has recently updated the description of its printing and downloading policies in the Help section of our website, in order to provide more information to users of the HEB collection.

ACLS Humanities E-Book follows fair-use rights and restrictions for all books on the site. Since most material on this site is licensed from participating publishers for electronic distribution only, fair-use restrictions should be carefully followed by users for any printing. This means that you may print pages for your personal research use only. If, as an instructor, you want to use material in a course, you can provide the permanent URL on the title record page and the appropriate page numbers to students. If you want to photocopy pages for your course, you must apply directly to the original publisher for permission.

Under the “page pdf” viewing option for titles in the collection, the default setting is set to both view and print three pages at a time. This is generally sufficient for following a citation or extracting a quotation and follows HEB’s policy for fair-use rights and limitations. If in doubt, or for further information, see our section on fair use.