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University of Iowa News Release


Nov. 23, 2010

At A Glance

UI Press releases new edition of 'The Iowa Precinct Caucuses'

The Third Edition of "The Iowa Precinct Caucuses" by Hugh Winebrenner and Dennis J. Goldford will become available Dec. 1 from the University of Iowa Press.

The book chronicles how the first-in-the-nation caucuses began, how they changed, and how they became fodder for, and manipulated by, the mass media. Winebrenner and Goldford argue that the media have given a value to the Iowa caucuses completely out of proportion to the reality of their purpose and procedural methods. In fact, the nationally reported “results” are contrived by the Iowa parties to portray a distorted picture of the process.

As presidential primaries have grown in the media spotlight and superseded the parties’ conventions, Iowa has become a political proving ground for the confident, the hopeful, and the relatively unknown. But at what cost?

The third edition has been updated to include the elections of 2000, which saw the first winner of the Iowa caucuses to reach the White House since 1976; of 2004 and the roller-coaster fortunes of Howard Dean and John Kerry; and of 2008 and the unlikely emergence of Barack Obama as a presidential contender.


Writers' Workshop alumna Johns reads Dec. 3 at Prairie Lights

University of Iowa Writers' Workshop alumna Rebecca Johns will read from her new novel, "The Countess", at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 3, in the Prairie Lights bookstore. The University of Iowa's Writing University website -- -- will stream the event live.

The carefully-researched book is a fictionalized account narrated by Elizabeth Bathory, who was known as the "Blood Countess" for murdering dozens of women and girls in 17th-century Hungary.

Johns's first novel, "Icebergs," was a finalist for the 2007 Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award for first fiction and a recipient of the Michener-Copernicus Award.

Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, the Harvard Review, the Mississippi Review, the Chicago Tribune, Cosmopolitan, Mademoiselle, Ladies' Home Journal, Self and Seventeen.


McGehee will sign copies of new UI Press book Dec. 4

Claudia McGehee will sign copies of her new University of Iowa Press book, "Where Do Birds Live?" from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, in Prairie Lights Books.

McGehee brought the glory of the prairie to life in "A Tallgrass Prairie Alphabet" and explored the wonders of the woodlands in "A Woodland Counting Book." Her new book brings children and their parents closer to the habitats and lives of birds from the Pacific coast to open rangeland to the cityscape of Manhattan.

She both depicts the birds and their habitats in lush, colorful detail and describes their way of life. Learn more at

Visit her blog at


Jazz Repertory Ensemble plays Ellington and Basie Dec. 6

The University of Iowa Jazz Repertory Ensemble (JRE) under the direction of School of Music faculty member Brent Sandy, will present a free concert of music from the bands of Duke Ellington and Count Basie at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 6, in Trinity Episcopal Church.

The Ellington set will include Billy Strayhorn's "Blood Count," "Cottontail," "Jack The Bear" and "Blue Pepper," a movement from the "Far East Suite".

From the Basie tradition JRE will perform "Fantail," "Making Whoopee" from the Basie/Frank Sinatra "Live at the Sands" recording, Thad Jones' "Rhoda Map" and his arrangement of "All of Me," and a Tom Kubis arrangement of "When You're Smiling."

JRE is a big band committed to the performance of the repertoire of the master composers/arrangers throughout the history of jazz.


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Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation to participate in a program, please contact the sponsoring department in advance.