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Wonderful News for JARS

When The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies was first published in the Fall of 1999, its Founding Editors (Bill Bradford, Stephen Cox, and some guy named Chris Matthew Sciabarra) and its Board of Advisors knew that we had our work cut out for us. We were the first interdisciplinary scholarly periodical ever established as a forum for the critical discussion of Ayn Rand's ideas. As we state in our credo, JARS is ...

A nonpartisan journal devoted to the study of Ayn Rand and her times. The journal is not aligned with any advocacy group, institute, or person. It welcomes papers from every discipline and from a variety of interpretive and critical perspectives. It aims to foster scholarly dialogue through a respectful exchange of ideas. The journal is published semi-annually, in the fall and the spring.

One of the most important achievements of any academic journal is its ability to be added to the indices of established abstracting services. This is a way of bolstering a journal's reputation as a serious organ of scholarly discussion, while contributing to the acceptance of that journal's subject matter as worthy of such discussion.

In its first few years of operation, JARS was able to add over a dozen of these services, including: CSA Worldwide Political Science Abstracts, IBR (International Bibliography of Book Reviews of Scholarly Literature in the Humanities and Social Sciences), IBZ (International Bibliography of Periodical Literature in the Humanities and Social Sciences), International Bibliography of the Social Sciences, International Political Science Abstracts, The Left Index, The Philosopher's Index, MLA International Bibliography, MLA Directory of Periodicals, Sociological Abstracts, Social Services Abstracts, and Women's Studies International.

Coverage in such indices facilitates the expansion of JARS citations, and, by consequence, Ayn Rand references, within the global marketplace of academic scholarship.

This has a two-fold benefit: First, it means that the works of those who write for JARS are being made readily available as resources for future Rand scholarship. As citations to JARS articles expand in the scholarly literature, more and more scholars will find these references for use in their own work.

Second, it means that JARS will continue to attract established scholars who seek to write about Rand in journals that are reputable, and, thus, fully indexed and abstracted by services used by their fellow academics in various fields of concentration.

Though we have had success in expanding our reach in scholarly indices, it has been an uphill battle to get JARS added to three of the most prestigious of indices: the Arts & Humanities Citation Index, Current Contents/Arts & Humanities, and the Social Sciences Citation Index.

In fact, some years ago, we approached those organizations of Thomson Scientific with the requisite three consecutive issues in the hopes that they would add JARS to their lists of the world's leading journals. The first three-issue review failed; JARS was still too young to join the global ranks.

As time passed, we decided to submit JARS for a second hearing at Thomson Scientific. The review process is a profoundly rigorous one. Yet, having failed to achieve our goals the first time around, we were confident that the journal's timely publication and improved quality would facilitate its acceptance in a second evaluation.

Today, I am proud to announce that the Journal of Ayn Rand Studies has been selected as a new addition to three of the most prestigious indices in the international community of scholars.

o The journal will be fully abstracted and indexed by the Arts & Humanities Citation Index:

The Arts & Humanities Citation Index® (A&HCI ®) and Arts & Humanities Search® provide access to current and retrospective bibliographic information and cited references found in nearly 1,130 of the world's leading arts & humanities journals. They also cover individually selected, relevant items from approximately 7,000 of the world's leading science and social sciences journals.

o The journal will be fully abstracted and indexed by Current Contents/Arts & Humanities:

Current Contents / Arts & Humanities provides access to complete bibliographic information from articles, editorials, meeting abstracts, commentaries, and all other significant items in recently published editions of over 1,120 of the world's leading arts and humanities journals and books from a broad range of categories.

o And, finally, abstracts of relevant journal articles centered on the social sciences (economics, political science, psychology, etc.) will be selectively included in the Social Sciences Citation Index:

The Social Sciences Citation Index® (SSCI®) and Social SciSearch® provide access to current and retrospective bibliographic information, author abstracts, and cited references found in over 1,700 of the world's leading scholarly social sciences journals covering more than 50 disciplines. They also cover individually selected, relevant items from approximately 3,300 of the world's leading science and technology journals.

It will take a few months for the journal's contents to begin appearing in these high quality indices, but JARS will soon be included in their databases. The journal coverage begins with Volume 6, No. 2, the Spring 2005 issue.

I am utterly delighted by this wonderful news.

FYI: Our forthcoming issue, which will include a symposium on Ayn Rand's ethics, will be published in the late Spring.

Comments welcome. Also cited by The Atlasphere.

Comments

Chris,

This is absolutely wonderful news. Congratulations. Deeply felt congratulations. After the setbacks of last year, it looks like this year is going to be the contrary.

Michael

Chris, you are wonderful -- and so is Stephen Cox and your Board of Advisors and so was Bill Bradford. And so is JARS. What a remarkable accomplishment! -- and after so short a time. No one has done for Objectivism what you have done. I hope you are bursting with well-deserved pride.

Barbara

Congratulations to you and your associates. You have done more than any other living scholar to get the ideas of Ayn Rand into the mainstream and respected as serious scholarship.

That's great news! Keep up the fine work!

Chris, it is not surprising news but oh, so gratifying. I'm proud to add to the congratulations you so well deserve.

Thank you so much, folks, for your kind words of congratulations.

My pal, colleague, and fellow JARS contributor, Walter Block, just brought this very interesting April 2004 article (PDF), written by my pal Daniel B. Klein (with Eric Chiang), which speaks of a potential ideological bias at work at SSCI. Dan actually cites the Journal of Ayn Rand Studies as among those journals not covered by SSCI.

If Dan is correct, the inclusion of JARS in the SSCI index is a more significant achievement than I first thought.

Congratulations, my dear! Those are indeed great accomplishments, and say much about the quality of the work of everyone at JARS.

A big pat on the back! Chris, you have been one of the most productive and fair minded Objectivists in the movement and I think you will go down in history as fostering some of the most interesting discussion in the "early days" of the movement.

Congratulations Chris. JARS keeps getting better.

Congratulations Chris and all at JARS :-)

MH

Congratulations, Chris!

It has been an honor and a privilege working with you. To reiterate what others have said, you have been key in bringing the world of Ayn Rand studies into the realm of respectable academic discourse.

That's awesome! Congratulations into infinity - what a great accomplishment.

My goodness! All these extra congratulatory notes from friends and colleagues!

Merci beaucoup! But those of you who have had a part in writing for JARS, or acting as peer readers, or, of course, subscribing to the journal, have been very important to our success. So thank yourselves too! :)

The fact that this inclusion of JARS is seen as remarkable is disheartening. The fact that JARS has been included is cause for celebration and pride. Congratulations.