The anthology of written work from the Al-Mutanabbi Street Coalition has been published by PM Press & is now on sale. Here’s the description from the PM Press website:
On March 5th, 2007, a car bomb was exploded on al-Mutanabbi Street in Baghdad. More than thirty people were killed and more than one hundred were wounded. This locale is the historic center of Baghdad bookselling, a winding street filled with bookstores and outdoor book stalls. Named after the famed 10th century classical Arab poet al-Mutanabbi, it has been the heart and soul of the Baghdad literary and intellectual community. This anthology begins with a historical introduction to al-Mutanabbi Street and includes the writing of Iraqis as well as a wide swath of international poets and writers who were outraged by this attack.

This book seeks to show where al-Mutanabbi Street starts in all of us: personally, in our communities, and in our nations. It seeks to show the commonality between this small street in Baghdad and our own cultural centers, and why this attack was an attack on us all. This anthology sees al-Mutanabbi Street as a place for the free exchange of ideas; a place that has long offered its sanctuary to the complete spectrum of Iraqi voices. This is where the roots of democracy (in the best sense of that word) took hold many hundreds of years ago. This anthology looks toward al-Mutanabbi Street as an affirmation of all that we hope for in a more just society.

For more info (including a complete list of contributors) & to order a copy of the book, go here.

I have been involved with the Al-Mutanabbi Street Coalition for a few years now (see the NewLights broadside here and some notes for a panel presentation here), and I am consistently amazed by the unwavering dedication of this group and of its founder, Beau Beausoleil. In addition to the initial broadside project and this anthology, there is now also an artists’ book project. I have heard Beau say many times that the project (in its broad sense) is not an “anti-war” project, nor is it a “healing” project—it’s about looking hard at violence, how it affects people & their culture, and about not looking away.

Buy this book.



Otherwise known as “the JAB book,” or “as-of-yet untitled.” This is a tricky one to translate to digital form, because the book is dependent on the reader being able to really stick their nose into it to read the pale text, and to be able to turn the book to read it in its multiple directions. So to help out a bit, here are two versions of the finished book, in different orientations. We highly recommend using the zoom feature on the reader to get to all of the text. & the thing in the middle is an all-digital study using the original photographs in sequence.

Image/Text by NewLights Press: Aaron Cohick, et al.
16 pages, saddle stapled
4.0625” x 8.125” (closed)
CMYK offset of digital photographs (printed by Brad Freeman, Jenna Rodriguez, & Claire Sammons at the Center for Book & Paper Arts at Columbia College Chicago), letterpress from photopolymer plates
Edition of 600

This book was made as an insert for the Journal of Artists’ Books #31. More info (including how to get yourself a copy) here.



This is a short documentary about The Press at Colorado College, the institution and studio to which the NewLights Press is symbiotically attached. The film was made by a student apprentice at The Press, Demetria Humphries. It's a really great little film, and I was honored to be a part of it. It's got lots of great letterpress action!





& this post is the fulfillment of another long-term goal for the NewLights Press Digital Archives: in the spirit of The William Blake Archive, not one, but three complete copies of The Drownable Species by Brian Evenson.

Why three? Because the process of making these books (detailed here) was rooted in chaos and variability, taking advantage of the unpredictability of water and the often unnoticed physicality of inkjet printing. Each book in the edition is different, and three seemed like the right number to allow readers to see how those differences emerge from copy to copy.

All of the other archived books on this blog are either out-of-print or unique. The Drownable Species is still available for purchase. It originally was published in late 2008 (right around Halloween actually) after 3 years of on & off labor. I am still very proud of this book. & now it’s more accessible. & if you enjoy the story, it was very recently published in Brian’s newest collection of short stories, Windeye (buy here and reviews here and here).

The three copies that have been digitized are numbers 6, 29 and 34. 

The Drownable Species
Short story by Brian Evenson with images by Aaron Cohick 

48 pages, hardcover, casebound, 8 ¼” x 5 ¼” 

Letterpress printed text, digitally printed images with hand manipulation 

Variable edition of 40