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Public International Law Quiz

In the last fifty years, public international law has undergone a radical transformation, moving from a discipline which ‘the great majority of lawyers of all states [knew] little or nothing’ about (Oppenheim) to the fastest growing legal discipline. To celebrate the recent update to the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law, we present this quiz.

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Burrowing into Punxsutawney Phil’s hometown data

Every February second, people across Pennsylvania and the world look to a famous rodent to answer the question—when will spring come? For over 120 years, Punxsutawney Phil Soweby (Punxsutawney Phil for short), has offered his predictions, based on whether he sees his shadow (more winter) or not (an early spring).

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A Very Short Film competition

By Chloe Foster
After more than three months of students carefully planning and creating their entries, the Very Short Film competition has closed and the longlisted submissions have been announced.

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Do you really know Who’s Who?

Do you know for how long Boris Johnson held his first job, or which music video The IT Crowd’s Richard Ayoade has produced? Who’s Who has become a phrase incorporated into our everyday language. With the iconic red-covered book or its online counterpart, you can get the lowdown of Who’s Who in politics, Who’s Who at the Oscars, even the Who’s Who of the cooking world. Written by the entrants themselves, the biographies not only walk you through their career and education but also, in some cases, reveal some interesting and unusual recreations! Take our quiz to see if you really know Who’s Who.

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Do you know your references and allusions?

Are you an Athena when it comes to literary allusions, or are they your kryptonite? Either way, the Oxford Dictionary of Reference and Allusion can be your Henry Higgins, providing fascinating information on the literary and pop culture references that make reading and entertainment so rich. Take this quiz, Zorro, and leave your calling card.

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Are the political ideals of liberty and equality compatible?

Are the political ideals of liberty and equality compatible? In this video, OUP author James P. Sterba of University of Notre Dame, joins Jan Narveson of University of Waterloo, to debate the practical requirements of a political ideal of liberty. Not only Narveson but the entire audience at the libertarian Cato Institute where this debate takes place is, in Sterba’s words, “hostile” to his argument that the ideal of liberty leads to (substantial) equality. Sterba goes on to further develop that argument in From Rationality to Equality.

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Plagiarized or original: A playlist for the contested music of Ira B. Arnstein

From the 1920s to the 1950s, Ira B. Arnstein was the unrivaled king of music copyright litigants. He spent the better part of those 30 years trying to prove that many of the biggest hits of the Golden Age of American Popular Song were plagiarized from his turn-of-the-century parlor piano pieces and Yiddish songs. “I suppose we have to take the bad with the good in our system which gives everyone their day in court,” Irving Berlin once said, but “Arnstein is stretching his day into a lifetime.”

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The music industry, change, and copyright

What happens when the creative world, technology, and the law combine? Look to the introduction of radio in the 1920s and a long-forgotten composer named Ira B. Arnstein. The long and tortured career of Arnstein, “the unrivaled king of copyright infringement plaintiffs,” opens a curious window into the evolution of copyright law in the United States and the balance of power in Tin Pan Alley.

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A comic quotation quiz

Moliere wrote in La critique de l’école des femmes (1663) that “it’s an odd job, making decent people laugh.” In the hopes that 2013 will be filled with delightful oddity and humor, we present this quiz, drawn from the Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations, 4th edition. Edited by the late Ned Sherrin, the dictionary compiles words of wit and wisdom from writers, entertainers and politicians.

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The discourse of the blues

Happy New Year, everyone! The Oral History Review is ringing in 2013 with a second oral history podcast. This week, managing editor Troy Reeves speaks with Roger Davis Gatchet about his Oral History Review article, “‘I’ve Got Some Antique in Me’: The Discourse of Authenticity and Identity in the African American Blues Community in Austin, Texas.” (Vol 39, issue 2). And if that isn’t enough to entice you, there’s also (what Troy assures me is) a really hilarious Weird Al Yankovic joke.

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Atlas of the World Quiz

School might be out for the holidays, but there’s still lots to learn. Since education never ends, we’ve prepared this geography quiz drawn from facts from the Oxford Atlas of the World, 19th edition. The only atlas to be updated annually, Oxford’s Atlas of the World combines gorgeous satellite images with the most up-to-date geographic and census information. Have fun geographers!

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Gerard Wolfe at the Tenement Museum

Thirty years after the first edition was published, Synagogues of New York’s Lower East Side: A Retrospective and Contemporary View, Second Edition (Fordham University Press) was released earlier this year. The author Gerard Wolfe shows how the Jewish community took root on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the late 19th and early 20th century by focusing on these beautiful buildings and houses of worship.

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No jingles: an alternative Christmas playlist

Christmas is, almost inescapably, a time of music. A lot of it is familiar and much-loved, but for those who might be looking for some more adventurous listening this year – beyond Slade, the Messiah, and Victorian carols – here are some pointers to alternative Christmas music from down the ages.

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