We are currently working on restoring items from our previous site. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused.
Elvin Lim (PPE, 1997)
How is it that contemporary presidents talk so much and yet say so little, as H. L. Mencken once described, like "dogs barking idiotically through endless nights?" In The Anti-Intellectual Presidency, Elvin Lim tackles this puzzle and argues forcefully that it is because we have been too preoccupied in our search for a "Great Communicator," and have failed to take presidents to task for what they communicate to us.
Lim argues that the ever-increasing tendency for presidents to crowd out argument in presidential rhetoric with applause-rendering platitudes and partisan punch-lines was concertedly implemented by the modern White House. Through a series of interviews with former presidential speechwriters, he shows that the anti-intellectual stance was a deliberate choice rather than a reflection of presidents' intellectual limitations. Only the smart, he suggests, know how to "dumb down."
Because anti-intellectual rhetoric impedes, rather than facilitates communication and deliberation, Lim warns that Americans must do something to recondition a political culture so easily seduced by smooth-operating anti-intellectual presidents. Sharply written and incisively argued, The Anti-Intellectual Presidency sheds new light on the murky depths of presidential utterances and its consequences for American democracy.
If you would like to buy Elvin Lim's book you can do so on the OUP website.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:43
Miriam Jorgensen (Human Sciences, 1987)
A revolution is underway among the Indigenous nations of North America. It is a quiet revolution, largely unnoticed in society at large. But it is profoundly important. From high plains states and prairie provinces to southwestern deserts, from Mississippi and Oklahoma to the northwest coast the continent, Native peoples are reclaiming their rights to govern themselves and to shape their futures in their own ways.
This book traces the contours of revolution as Native nations turn the dream of self-determination into practical reality. Part report, part analysis, part how-to-manual for Native leaders, it discusses strategies for governance and community and economic development that are being employed today by American Indian nations and First Nations in Canada as they move to assert greater control over their own affairs. For nations that wish to join that revolution for those who simply want to understand the transformation now underway across Indigenous North America, this book is a critical resource.
Miriam Jorgensen is Associate Director for Research in the Native Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy at the University of Arizona and Research Director of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development. For more information about this book click here.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:38
Brian C. Bennett (Modern History, 1951)
'Snakes and Ladders' is a collection of short stories and 'bits and pieces' which hopefully can be enjoyed by all ages whilst relaxing anywhere - in a plane or train, a garden chair, a warm bath, or by a cosy fire. It has a wide mixture of characters, many of the stories have a twist in the tail, and there is a variety of humorous, dramatic, saddish and feel-good situations.
Brian Bennett was born way back in 1931 and has lived in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, since 1988. He scraped into Christ Church, Oxford, from where a weak degree led him into his own snakes and ladders career with seven U.K. and American financial institutions and a mostly enjoyable life in Portugal, Brasil, Guyana, the U.S.A., Luxembourg and the U.K. In the course of this he has met and worked with many delightful people, and had many memorable experiences, the flavour of which has been reflected in some of the stories.
If you would like to purchase a copy of Brian C. Bennett's book please visit the publishers website here: Author House
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:35
Richard Greene (English, 1984)
Graham Greene: A Life in Letters (Little, Brown) is ‘A triumph of judgement and judicious selection that offers a vivid new picture of Greene the man: his pleasures, foibles, and, above all, his generosity,’ says Ian Thomson in The Sunday Times. David Lodge has named it his book of the year in The Guardian. Graham Greene lived for eighty-six years and wrote many tens of thousands of letters. This selection sifts through the vast number that survive and presents the biography of a major British novelist in his own words and in his own voice. The volume has a detailed introduction and notes to guide the reader through the rough terrain of Graham Greene’s career – Mexico, Vietnam, Russia, Israel, Sierra Leone, Cuba, The Congo, Paraguay and Panama – and draws the reader into a life of writing, espionage, romance, and political involvement.
To find out more about this book and order it online please click here.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:33
Jennifer Davis Michael (English, 1989)
Though usually classified as a Romantic, Blake subverts and dissolves the binaries on which Romanticism turns: self and other, art and nature, country and city. Rather than reject city outright like many of his contemporaries, Blake embraces it as the intricate workshop of human imagination. Each chapter of this book focuses on a specific text of Blake's that illustrates a particular conception of metaphorical embodiment of the city. These shifting metaphors emphasize the construction of all human environments and the need for imaginative labor to build and interpret them. This study seeks to bridge a gap between "transcendent" and "historicist" readings of Blake while at the same time challenging assumptions that still colour our view of the city in the twenty-first century.
If you would like to purchase this book please click here.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:28
Christopher McIntosh (PPE, 1962)
Gardens of the Gods is an invitation to look at and create gardens in a new way—or rather a very old way that has been widely forgotten. Its theme is the garden as a sacred space, an outdoor temple carrying an intentional message: religious, mystical, poetic or philosophical. Christopher McIntosh reveals the basic elements of the visual language used to convey meaning in a garden: its form and proportions; the decorative features in it; and the plants with their symbolic or mythological associations. He gives examples of motifs most frequently used and most pregnant with meaning, such as labyrinths, grottoes, fountains, monoliths and sacred groves. The reader is then taken on a fascinating tour of the great gardening traditions of different periods and regions. These include the gardens of China with their moon gates and immortal rocks, the Zen gardens of Japan, the paradise gardens of Islam, those of Renaissance Italy, the landscaped parks of England, and some striking modern examples of symbolic gardens, such as the Tarot Garden of the sculptress Niki de Saint Phalle in Italy.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:25
Anne McCabe (Byzantine Studies, 1993)
The veterinary compilation known as the Hippiatrica is a rich and little-known source of information about the care and medical treatment of horses, donkeys, and mules in late antiquity and the Byzantine period. This book provides a guide both to its intriguing contents, and to its complex textual history.
To find out more about this book please click here.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:26
Oliver Stanley (English, 1946)
Slyly observant, sensitive and frequently hilarious, this assured novel tells of Englishman abroad William Soames, and evokes the somewhat seedy atmosphere of Paris in the years following the end of Word War II.
To purchase a copy of Oliver Stanley's novel, please click here.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:39
Algernon Percy (Modern History, 1987)
Algernon Percy (Christ Church 1987-90) saw his first book, A Bearskin's Crimea: Colonel Henry Percy VC and his Brother Officers published in 2005. In November 2007, it came out in paperback. As well as using previously unexamined family archive papers, the author contacted as many descendants of Grenadier Guards officers from the period 1854-55 as he could locate. More often than not, he found yet more material locked away in attics which the families in question had never got round to looking at properly in the previous 150 years. Algernon Percy also travelled extensively in the Crimea as part of his research for this book, which covers not only the exploits of the Crimean War's highest ranking VC recipient but also interesting aspects of the 'home front' and Florence Nightingale's work (through Henry Percy's brother, who did much to advance the cause of women's nursing). This makes the book as much a 'human story' as it is military history.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:08
Claire Van Cleave (History of Art, 1989)
A beautifully designed selection of the finest Italian Renaissance drawings from the British Museum, the Louvre and other French public collections, giving remarkable insight into the creative processes of some of the greatest artists in history. The main body of the book showcases 112 of the finest drawings by more than 40 Italian Renaissance masters, including Michelangelo, Leonardo, Botticelli, Raphael and Andrea del Sarto, accompanied by a concise sketch of the life and work of each artist. Arranged chronologically, they reveal stylistic and geographical trends as well as personal interactions between the artists themselves, and provide an extraordinary insight in to the artistic world of renaissance Italy.
Updated: Thursday 21st January 2010 13:03