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Academic Insights for the Thinking World

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An Oxford Companion to hosting the most explosive Guy Fawkes Night

By Daniel Parker
For over 400 years, bonfires, fireworks, and effigies have burned on November 5th to commemorate the failed Gunpowder Plot put together by Guy Fawkes and twelve other conspirators. With a little help from OUP, you could out-shine all previous Bonfire Night celebrations. So pick up your Roman Candles, grab some sparklers, and join me as we run down OUP’s top five tips for hosting the perfect Guy Fawkes Night.

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A few things to remember, this fifth of November

As you prepare to gather round a bonfire and to ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ at fireworks, don’t forget (indeed, ‘remember, remember’) that you’re part of a well-established national tradition. What’s now known as the Gunpowder Plot was uncovered on the night of Monday 4 November 1605 when Thomas Knyvett, keeper of Whitehall Palace, led a second search of the vaults under the House of Lords.

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A Halloween reading list from University Press Scholarship Online

The nights darken, the wind howls, and branches (or ghostly fingers?) tap against your windowpane. This can only mean one thing – Halloween approaches! To celebrate the day of ghouls, ghosts and other creatures which go bump in the night, we’ve compiled a list of University Press Scholarship Online‘s most spine-chilling chapters (available free for a limited time).

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Phantoms and frauds: the history of spirit photography

By Kate Scott
The last time President Abraham Lincoln and First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln sat for a portrait photograph together was in the early 1870s, five years or more after the president’s death and burial. The president, filmy and translucent, tenderly placed his see-through hands on his wife’s shoulders as she looked into the camera.

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Shakespeare in disguise

Celebrate Halloween with Shakespeare and Oxford Scholarly Editions Online (OSEO)! Test your knowledge on which characters disguise themselves, what the witches say around their cauldron, why ghosts haunt the living, and who plays tricks in the night …

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Sofia Gubaidulina, light and darkness

Today is the birthday of a composer who writes in a radically different musical style than many of us are accustomed to hearing on a day-to-day basis, as we sit on hold with the doctor’s office or hum along with the music piped into the aisles of the grocery store.

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Interview with Charles Hiroshi Garrett

By Anna-Lise Santella
After nearly a decade of work, the second edition of The Grove Dictionary of American Music—often called AmeriGrove—is finished. In September 2013, shortly before publication, I talked with Editor in Chief Charles Hiroshi Garrett about the project.

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The golden wings of the bicentennial: Giuseppe Verdi at 200

It is finally here. The big anniversary. The bicentennial. Today, Giuseppe Verdi turns 200. There has been excitement in the air for quite some time—leading opera houses presenting new productions and outreach initiatives to honor the great composer, publishing companies rushing to release a host of new books for all sorts of readerships, and public and private organizations around the world (governments and municipalities, research centers and fan clubs) working to celebrate the occasion as it deserves.

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Pragmatic preservation and the Vanderbilt Hotel

By Alodie Larson
As Grand Central Terminal celebrates its centennial this year, I have found myself admiring other accomplishments of the firm responsible for a significant part of its design, Warren & Wetmore. In my first days in the New York office of Oxford University Press, I noticed an imposing cadre of busts from the southeast windows of the building.

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Ten constitutional preambles you may not know

How do nations across the globe declare their intent in the formation of a new government? To celebrate the launch of the innovative, new platform Oxford Constitutions of the World, we have highlighted a broad range of preambles from several jurisdictions below and the full constitutions freely available on the Oxford Constitutions of the World site for a limited time.

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A medieval saint in modern times

By Kandice Rawlings
Saint Francis of Assisi died on this day in 1226, and when he was canonized just two years later, the fourth of October became his feast day. Even before his sainthood was official, St Francis was a popular figure among the faithful, and the religious order he had founded already had chapters throughout Europe.

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Will young invincibles buy into the ACA?

By Stephen Gorin, PhD, MSW
Since its enactment in 2010, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, has been the focus of controversy and heated debate. As the date for implementing the health exchanges approaches, the war of words has intensified. It is perhaps not surprising that in a recent poll for the Kaiser Family Foundation, 51% of respondents said that they lacked enough information to understand how the ACA would affect them and their families, and 44% were unsure whether the ACA was even law.

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