|Coming of age|
by Nathan Anderson
U of R history by Dr. James Pitsula
Dr. James Pitsula described his new book as the coming of age for the University of Regina. Pitsula addressed an audience on Sept. 13, about the writing process of his new book, As One Who Serves. Pitsula first had the idea to write about this campus back in 1996, when he was asked to write an overview essay about the university. He saw that there was so much more that needed to be told, and the con- cept of a book was developed. At the time he knew that he had to write the book in an interesting manner, and decided to write it as though he were telling a story. "Canadian historians have for- gotten they are story tellers," Pitsula explained. He said people are more interested and learn more if they read a story and not just facts. With a renewed sense of purpose found, he began to enjoy his task of creating a voice for the university's history. "I could not stop working," exclaimed Pitsula, "I had to write!" In the early stages of his research he was not sure what part of the his- tory needed to be told. He finally decided that his book should be about the "organic life" of a universi- ty - the students, faculty, and pro- grams that have been developed in the institution. As he researched, he also began to realize the impact of the people who worked so hard to make the U of R a reality. Pitsula revealed his own coming of age in his second year of universi- ty at the University of Saskatchewan. His ancient history professor inspired him; he found that history is the type of subject that has an order to it unlike any other subject. From the beginning he saw histo- ry as a subject that was connected to teaching, research and writing. He came to teach at the U of R in 1978, where he was able to meet some of the characters that were later used to tell the story of the university's histo- ry. Being so closely linked with those that helped create the U of R campus served him well in the writing process, as it gave him an insider/outsider perspective. As One Who Serves is Pitsula's fourth book, and he feels that this is his best work to date.