- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 26, 2002

BALTIMORE A scholar may have a chance to salvage her academic career after officials at a private girls school in Baltimore agreed to allow the publication of her dissertation.
Andrea Hamilton, who wrote a history of Bryn Mawr School, is teaching freshmen part time at Southern Methodist University in Dallas after the school refused to let Johns Hopkins University Press publish the work, citing contractual rights to the school's archives.
Academics say it's nearly impossible to find a full-time teaching job at a university without having been published.
After more than 140 historians from around the world signed and delivered a petition last week to the school, Bryn Mawr reviewed the manuscript again and agreed to allow publication.
"It was a complete surprise to me," said Miss Hamilton, 35, who has received a fax of the agreement.
"If the book is published and well-received, certainly it will enhance my credentials greatly," she said. "I hope that when I go on the job market again that my application will be much stronger as a result of this."
The agreement comes with one condition: The book must include a disclaimer that the history is not "official" or "sanctioned."
That's fine with officials at Johns Hopkins University Press, who said they are still interested in publishing the book. Miss Hamilton also said she had no objection to the disclaimer.
Miss Hamilton said she would take a few days to "regroup" and decide her next move. She wrote a social history of the school, emphasizing its place in girls' education, for her dissertation at Tulane University.
The private school teaches kindergarten through high school. It was founded in 1885 as a preparatory school for Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania with the goal of giving girls the same quality of education as boys.
Miss Hamilton sold her manuscript in late 1998 to Johns Hopkins University Press, but Hopkins canceled the contract in 2000 after Bryn Mawr threatened legal action. The school cited an agreement the scholar signed in 1995 to gain access to school records. It gave the North Baltimore school approval rights over any publication based on its records.


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