MORE AND MORE Americans are homeless, itinerant, impoverished, and for over a decade Washington's Community for Creative Non-Violence has recognized the need to reach out to the people on the streets. Now it has published a compendium of facts and reflections titled Homelessness in America, released to coincide with the House hearings on homelessness in December--the first, says CCNV's Mitch Snyder, since the Depression. Subtitled A Forced March to Nowhere, the book has an introduction by Daniel Berrigan and is dotted with photographs of grate dwellers, bread lines, improvised shelters and park-bench beds. A disclaimer states that no pictures were taken of anyone who didn't wish to be photographed. Never having "encouraged photographers to use homeless people as subjects," the CCNV explains that it is "with extreme hesitation and a nagging sense of infidelity that we share" the photos with the public.
Just under two dozen profiles make up U.S. Senators from the Prairie (Dakota Press) by Larry Pressler, now the senior Republican senator from South Dakota and number 22 in the book. (Senator James Abdnor, another Republican, elected in 1980, is the 23rd.) Pressler did not, however, write the chapter on himself--in the interest of objectivity, naturally. So how does he come off? "Relatively independent" is how he's characterized by Douglas Miller and Gwen Gibson, who collaborated to produce the 41/2 pages it takes to explain their assessment. Two women, by the way, were among those preceding Pressler in the Senate from South Dakota, in case your fund of South Dakota trivia is on the low side, Gladys Pyle and Vera Bushfield, neither of whom served a full term.
Gallaudet College Press has been in existence since 1980, bringing out six to eight books a year, mostly for professionals and teachers in the field of hearing impairment. Broken Ears, Wounded Hearts by George Harris is, says Press managing editor Leonard Lane, the "first general interest book we've done." The author, a Kansas psychologist, has written of his own experiences with a daughter born prematurely and with a variety of problems, including deafness. Though Jennifer Harris, now 13, does not attend Gallaudet, which has long been a leading center for deaf education, George Harris has visited there since his book was accepted by the Press and been impressed, the book's editor Jim Stentzel says, by Gallaudet's programs. In the meantime, Jennifer's story, due out next month, seemed to the editors there to be the right one to "broaden their portfolio," as Stentzel puts it.
Coming in March from local publisher Seven Locks Press is Home on the Canal by Elizabeth Kytle, in which the author recounts the life and times of the 185-mile Chesapeake and Ohio Canal. In addition to giving the history of the ill- fated waterway, Kytle has interviewed canal old-timers like Lester M. Mose Sr., son of a canal boat captain, who remembers the time his mother, who couldn't swim, fell overboard. Another boatman's son, Theodore Lizer, was steering his father's vessel by the time he was 12. "You didn't have no boss; you was out there driving and you didn't have to worry about nothing. We-e-ll, screech owls out there at night . . . you'd be setting up on a mule about half asleep and one of them in a tree would give a whooooooo. You were scared of them."