The theme for Ann Arbor Ypsilanti Reads 2012 is Language: How We Communicate. Award-winning journalist Stephen G. Bloom, the UM Howard R. Marsh Visiting Professor of Journalism, will discuss how he communicates through non-fiction writing - including his December piece "Observations From 20 Years of Iowa Life" in The Atlantic which set off a firestorm of controversy placing him in the national spotlight. Bloom will also discuss the role of journalists today, touching on the future of journalism and nonfiction writing. Since 1993, Bloom has been on the faculty of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iowa, where he is Professor and the Bessie Dutton Murray Professional Scholar. Prior to joining the Iowa faculty, Bloom was a staff writer at the Sacramento Bee, San Jose Mercury News, Los Angeles Times, and Dallas Morning News. He was a Brazilian correspondent for the Field News Service and national news editor at the Latin America Daily Post. He is the author of "Tears of Mermaids: The Secret Story of Pearls," "The Oxford Project" with photographer Peter Feldstein, "Inside the Writer's Mind" and "Postville: A Clash of Cultures In Heartland America." His work has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, including The Atlantic, Smithsonian, The New York Times Magazine, Washington Post, Wilson Quarterly, Salon, Chronicle of Higher Education, American Journalism Review, International Herald Tribune, Chicago Tribune Magazine, Money, Journal of Health Communication, Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, American Editor, and National Public Radio's All Things Considered.