Fall 1988, Volume 5.2
This issue of Weber Studies, with its "Centennial Wave" cover illustration, is the second number dedicated to Weber State College.
At the practical level, the idea of the centennial has injected a renewed zeal on campus and engendered new ideas, new committees such as the Centennial Planning Committee, and an outstanding calendar of events.
At the philosophical level, the centennial has given the campus a sustained, year-long occasion to think of long-range planning and possible shifts in "paradigms," which (as T. S. Kuhn says in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions ) are necessary for genuine change to occur. But not all change need be revolutionary. Actually, any change in higher education is often better when it is "evolutionary," because the evolutionary process maintains pedagogic and academic sanity of all involved in the pursuit.
Year-long "celebrations" also tend to gently coerce all campus areas to indulge in realistic self-evaluations and euphoric visions alike. But self-evaluations of needs and goals do not mean much for journals unless these are buttressed by administrative support.
Weber Studies has fared well in its "centennial scrutiny." President Nadauld included the journal in the college's "pockets of excellence" mentioned earlier in "Focus on Weber State College--II." Even more gratifying is the sanctioning of a half-time position of Editorial Assistant to Weber Studies beginning this September. I thank Academic Vice President Robert B. Smith and Dean Sherwin Howard for recognizing and meeting this need of the journal. For student Lisa Dayton and me in the Weber Studies office, this addition virtually signifies the coming of age of the journal. Things should be less harrowing, more pleasurable, and certainly more manageable with new help on board. We hope to find time to plot excellence more diligently and serve our growing readership even better.
Indeed we have been plotting already to publish an exciting series involving four writers beginning next year. When and if the project comes through, we would have realized a cherished goal, which had its origin in daydreams spawned by the ubiquitous idea of the centennial.
This issue of Weber Studies features, as did our Spring 1988 dedicatory issue, more Utah scholars and writers. We lead off with a personal essay on "missing the mark" by Kenneth W. Brewer, who is a member of our Editorial Board and who has done everything but miss the mark. His poems that follow illustrate how confidently he can dance to his own music!
Jean Bickmore White, in commemoration of the adoption of the U. S. Constitution in 1789, explores the legal position of women, who were all but excluded from civic or legal rights in the document. She points out how women used that document to wrest the limited constitutional equality they have earned in the last two centuries in court battles and through political action.
Dorothea Kehler's provocative article pointing at Desdemona's unwitting "complicity" in bringing about her own death at the hands of her husband even before their marriage was consummated will especially interest those who saw Othello performed at the Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, Utah, this summer.
Poems by James A. Minor, Rita Kiefer, Rawdon Tomlinson, and Paulann Petersen are sure to please the readers. Book reviews in this issue feature Alan Cheuse's Fall Out of Heaven and Lisa M. Steinman's Made in America: Science, Technology, and American Modernist Poets.
Finally, "Newsboy," the fiction in this issue, comes from Levi S. Peterson, who is also a member of our Editorial Board. Levi has agreed to edit Weber Studies for the next six months as I go on sabbatical leave beginning this fall. Novelist and fiction writer, Levi S. Peterson has been an editor of Encyclia: The Journal of the Utah Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters and has guest edited Western American Literature for a year as well. So I bid au revoir rather literally and happily until the next fall issue.