We don’t often discuss book awards on the OUPblog, but this year the inaugural British Academy Medals were awarded to three authors and their titles published by Oxford University Press: Thomas Hobbes: Leviathan, edited by Noel Malcolm; The Organisation of Mind by Tim Shallice and Rick Cooper; and The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean by David Abulafia (USA only).
Seventy years ago today, in the late afternoon of Sunday 25 July 1943, the fascist dictator Benito Mussolini went for what he imagined was a fairly routine audience with the Italian king. The war had been going badly for Italy: two weeks earlier US, Canadian and British forces had landed in Sicily, and met with little resistance. And the previous evening a number of senior fascists had passed a motion calling on the king to assume full military command.
By Heidi Moawad
Is work-life balance consistent with professional ambition? A recent study concludes that young women are now proclaiming that they don’t want to be leaders. Does this data suggest that young women who do want to be leaders should not bother to ‘lean in’ by acquiring expert level knowledge, attaining specialized skills and pursuing experience-building work projects when they have the opportunity?
By Julia Geneuss and Florian Jessberger
Fifteen years ago, on 17 July 1998, the Rome Statute, the founding treaty of the International Criminal Court (ICC), was adopted, creating the first permanent international forum to try and punish perpetrators of mass atrocities.
By Sanja Perovic
Le 14 juillet, as Bastille Day is known in France, is the only national festival that commemorates the French Revolution. According to revolutionary gospel, it marks the day when the ‘people’ stormed the state prison that once stood on today’s Place de la Bastille, thereby heralding the end of despotism and an era of freedom.
By Kenneth R. Johnston
What do Edward Snowden and Samuel Taylor Coleridge have in common? Both were upset by government snooping into private communications on the pretext of national security. Snowden exposed the US National Security Agency’s vast programs of electronic surveillance to the Guardian and the Washington Post, Coleridge belittled the spy system of William Pitt the Younger in his autobiography, Biographia Literaria (1817).
It’s the summer of the superhero here at Oxford University Press. We’re publishing two essay collections on the real powers superheroes hold — on our imagination and our understanding of the world. Our Superheroes, Ourselves, edited by Robin S. Rosenberg, PhD, and What is a Superhero?, edited by Robin S. Rosenberg, PhD and Peter Coogan, PhD, look at some of our greatest superheroes (and supervillains) and explore what exactly makes them “super”.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it another Superman-related blogpost to tie in with today’s release of Man of Steel? Hold on to the bulging blue bicep of Oxford University Press and prepare to gaze below in wonder as we take you on a ride over the past 80 years of Superman.
By David Igler
On 8 June—a day known around the world as World Oceans Day—we should take a few moments to consider the history as well as the plight of our watery globe. The earth is mostly covered by water, not land, and that water is largely responsible for all forms of human and non-human life. The oceans are instrumental to everything; they form the basis of the earth’s water cycle, provide sustenance to much of humanity, and serve as a barometer of the mounting climate crisis.
I grew up with Star Trek. When I was 10, I helped my mom put together an intricate scale model of the USS Enterprise (NCC-1701, if you’re curious). I knew that LeVar Burton could tell me about a warp core before I knew that he would read me a children’s book, and I knew that Klingon was a learnable language long before I had ever heard of human languages like Tagalog or Swahili.
Almost on a daily basis the tabloids and media have some negative comment or observation to make about the dreadful state of the National Health Service (NHS) and the atrocious standards of care that patients receive at the hands of NHS nurses.
By Daniel Freeman and Jason Freeman
According to the UK Centre for Economic Performance, mental illness accounts for nearly half of all ill health in the under 65s. But this begs the question: what is mental illness? How can we judge whether our thoughts and feelings are healthy or harmful? What criteria should we use?
What is it about the sounds of baseball that make them musical, and so easily romanticized? In Ken Burns’ documentary Baseball, George Plimpton says that “Baseball has these absolutely unique sounds. The sounds of spring and summer….The sound of the ball against the bat is absolutely extraordinary. I don’t know any American male that doesn’t hear that in the springtime and get called back to some moment in the past.” These sounds are especially vivid in a game that’s often so quiet.
The Great Gatsby is one of the best-known American novels, but weirdly, and strangely reflective of Gatsby himself, one of the least understood. The much-awaited Baz Lurhmann version of The Great Gatsby opens in the United States tomorrow, and like Gatsby himself — as a new trailer reminds us — the novel is “guarding secrets.”
By Christopher Nichols
Just when, where, why, and how should American power be used? Current assumptions about the near omnipresence—though far from omnipotence—of US power, its influence and its reach are now shaky. Yet these same assumptions coexist alongside widely shared views that such power could and should be used.
By Matthew Worley
According to the Daily Mail, Oi! records were ‘evil’. According to the Socialist Worker, Oi! was a conduit for Nazism. According to the NME, Oi! was a means to inject ‘violent-racist-sexist-fascist’ attitudes into popular music. The year is 1981, and on 3 July the Harmbrough Tavern is set ablaze in the London borough of Southall.