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How to play Six Degrees of Oxford Index on Twitter

Can you connect two seemingly different ideas? Now’s your chance! In a new addition to our regular Friday Twitter games, we’re introducing Six Degrees of Oxford Index or #6degreesOI. We’ll pose a challenge — such as Pompeii to propaganda – with the #6degreesOI hashtag. Discover the five steps to move from one Oxford Index Overview Page (Pompeii) to the other (propaganda) using the “Related Overviews” on the right hand side. The first person to tweet the correct steps with the #6degreesOI hashtag wins.

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In praise of the podcast

PB. The initials are not exactly as familiar as, say, BBC, or NPR, but we’re not operating in a massively different environment. PB: Philosophy Bites. Time was when to broadcast on the radio (or the ‘wireless’) you’d have to seek a license for permission to use a teeny weeny portion of the radio frequency spectrum. Broadcasting was time-consuming, bureaucratic, and above all expensive. It required staff and costly equipment and it was possible only with the support of highly-trained studio technicians and engineers. No longer

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New Atlantis at Voodoo Fest

By John Swenson
I had the great thrill over the week to perform as part of the Paul Sanchez Rolling Road Show at the Voodoo Experience in New Orleans. The three day music extravaganza takes place under the live oaks in beautiful City Park. Sanchez asked me to read from New Atlantis: Musicians Battle for the Future of New Orleans at the beginning of his set on the Preservation Hall stage. I read about my return to New Orleans after hurricane Katrina as the band played the melodic swells of “At the Foot of Canal Street” behind me.

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Howard Skempton on composing

By Anwen Greenaway
Composer Howard Skempton is one of the mainstays of British contemporary classical music. He is an experimental composer who writes in a style completely his own, un-deflected by trends in composition or performance. Having developed, under the tutelage of Cornelius Cardew, a musical style characterised by its elegance and simplicity, Skempton’s catalogue of compositions is now extensive and diverse.

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Pasqua Rosee and the coffee shop

Coffee shops are in the news, but where did it all begin? Perhaps with this man, Pasqua Rosee (fl 1651-6), who opened London’s first coffee-house at St Michael Cornhill. Rosee’s coffee-house was a shed in St Michael’s churchyard. Here served “two or three dishes” of coffee “at a time twice or thrice a day.” Rosee’s coffee-house was a shed in St Michael’s churchyard.

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The challenges of discoverability

By Robert Faber
In the world of digital scholarship, discovery really matters. There are many new ways of reading content on the web or mobile devices, but making our publications easy to find in the vast ocean of digital information is a growing challenge. When we decided to take this on and set up a “discoverability” program across all OUP’s global academic publishing, it sounded simple enough: we just have to improve the ways people find and use our content, right?

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The top ten dramatizations of Moby-Dick

By George Cotkin
Moby-Dick draws readers into it. And many of its more creative readers have sought to capture its grandeur on film and stage. From the first film in 1926 to the present, these attempts have taken liberties with the novel, sometimes for good, sometimes for ill. But that is the challenge that Moby-Dick offers its readers, a text that is deep and wide, an ocean of issues and concerns that we must all, in some fashion, navigate

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Announcing the Place of the Year 2012 Longlist: Vote!

As the year winds down, it’s time to take a look back. Alongside the publication of the 19th edition of The Atlas of the World, Oxford University Press will be highlighting the places that have inspired, shaped, and challenged history in 2012. We’re also doing things differently for Place of the Year (POTY) in 2012. In addition to our regular panel of geographers and experts, we’re opening up the choice to the public.

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The Day Parliament Burned Down in real-time on Twitter

To mark the anniversary of a now little-remembered national catastrophe – the nineteenth-century fire which obliterated the UK Houses of Parliament – Oxford University Press and author Caroline Shenton will reconstruct the events of that fateful day and night in a real-time Twitter campaign on 16 October 2012.

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Coming out for marriage equality

Polls and election results show Americans are sharply divided on same-sex marriage, and the controversy is unlikely to subside, especially with a presidential election almost upon us. As a result, Debating Same-Sex Marriage co-author John Corvino, chose to speak to some of the questions revolving around the same-sex marriage dilemma and why the rights and responsibilities of marriage are still important.

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The point of no return

By Alyssa Bender
If a theater noob polled a group of theater fans on what classic musicals she must see to jumpstart her theater education, you would be hard pressed to find a fan without The Phantom of the Opera on their list. The show, which opened at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London on 9 October 1986, has left an undeniable impact on London’s West End, Broadway, and theater in general.

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Fighting Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

According to Breastcancer.org, about one in eight U.S. women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. It is a complicated disease that takes different forms — one of the most confounding being Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. Patricia Prijatel, a nationally published magazine writer and an award-winning teacher, was diagnosed with Triple-Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) in 2006.

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50 years of James Bond in music

Few characters in the history of cinema, if any, are more iconic than Ian Fleming’s debonair super-spy, James Bond; few, too, can boast of any comparison to the equally iconic music which accompanies the intrepid agent 007’s exploits. Since the series’ beginning, the Bond films have been marked by exceptional music, including contributions from Paul McCartney, Shirley Bassey, Louis Armstrong and Madonna, and, of course, John Barry’s instantly recognizable “James Bond Theme.”

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Tutankhamun and the mummy’s curse

In the winter of 1922-23 archaeologist Howard Carter and his wealthy patron George Herbert, the Fifth Earl of Carnarvon, sensationally opened the tomb of Tutankhamun. Six weeks later Herbert, the sponsor of the expedition, died in Egypt. The popular press went wild with rumours of a curse on those who disturbed the Pharaoh’s rest and for years followed every twist and turn of the fate of the men who had been involved in the historic discovery. Long dismissed by Egyptologists, the mummy’s curse remains a part of popular supernatural belief. We spoke with Roger Luckhurst, author of The Mummy’s Curse: The true history of a dark fantasy, to find out why the myth has captured imagination across the centuries, and how it has impacted on popular culture.

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Anatol Lieven on American nationalism

On the one hand, there is the core tradition of American civic nationalism based on the universalist ‘American Creed’ of almost religious reverence for American democratic institutions and the U.S. constitution. On the other, there exists a chauvinist nationalism which holds that these institutions are underpinned by cultural values which belong only to certain Americans, and which is strongly hostile both to foreigners and to minorities in America which are felt not to share those values.

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