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Old Member Publications

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Discovering Tong

Discovering Tong: Its History, Myths and Curiosities 

Robert Jeffery (1996)

The small village of Tong on the Shropshire-Staffordshire border possesses an immensely rich historical and cultural heritage. This book explores many aspects of that heritage during the past thousand years. It will appeal particularly to those acquainted with Tong, providing additional insights into the concept of "place" and the processes by which a sense of identity is formed and sustained in a community.  Copies are available from the Chapter House shop on 01865 201971, or for more information visit www.discoveringtong.org

Image to Interpretation

An Intelligent System to Aid Historians in Reading the Vindolanda Texts

Melissa M. Terras (Engineering Science, 1998)

Ink and stylus tablets discovered at the Roman fort of Vindolanda are a unique resource for scholars of ancient history.  However, the stylus tablets are extremely difficult to read.  This book details the development of what appears to be the first system constructed to aid experts in the process of reading an ancient document, exploring the extent to which techniques from Artificial Intelligence can be used to develop a system that could aid Historians in reading the stylus texts.  It will be of interest to papyrologists, researchers in Roman history and palaeography, computer and engineering scientists working in the field of Artificial Intelligence and image processing, and those interested in the use of computing in the humanities. The book is available here.

The Amnesia Clinic

James Scudamore (Modern Languages, 1995)

'The Amnesia Clinic' is James Scudamore's first novel. It won the Somerset Maugham Award 2007 and was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize, the Glen Dimplex Award and the Dylan Thomas Prize. Commenting on the novel in their summing up, the judges of the Costa First Novel Award 2006 (formerly the Whitbread Prize) said: 'This delightful book about the friendship between two boys in Ecuador is full of tall tales and fantasy. The line between reality and bizarre fiction is always blurred, always mesmerising.' To buy the novel click here.

Glacier Science and Environmental Change

Peter Knight (Geography, 1980)

'Glacier Science and Environmental Change' is an authoritative and comprehensive review of contemporary issues in glaciology. It explores the interface between glacier science and environmental change with reference to environments of the past, present and future. Written by the world's foremost authorities in the subject, this book provides state-of-the-art reviews of the key topics in glaciology and related disciplines in environmental change; cutting-edge case studies of the latest research; an interdisciplinary synthesis of the issues that draw together the research efforts of glaciologists and scientists from other fields such as geology, hydrology and climatology.  For more information please click  here.

Grannie's Tales

Doris Maud Griffin (mother of Paul Griffin - PPE, 1956)

Letters from a grandmother to a granddaughter, about the daily lives of her own two young children living in a south Shropshire country vicarage over 70 years ago. Touchingly written, beautifully illustrated and telling of a world long ago and far away.  Facsimile copies of some of the letters show how selectively and meticulously the letters were composed and written, contemporary photographs of the family and their dog and cat at home add authenticity and there is delightful map of the parish which shows the countryside within walking distance of the vicarage which is now an Episcopal residence.  To buy the book click here.

 

Fundamental Physics for Probing and Imaging

Wade Allison (Physics, 1963)

A major impact of physics on civilisation has been that it enables us to see inside things – from everyday objects, to the Earth, to our own bodies. Which aspects of physics are primarily responsible for this revolution? How do they work and how are they used to provide the information and images? Are the dangers that surround applications of this physics understood? Or are the public misinformed? This book is written to answer these questions. Its coverage is broad but it is also quite demanding in places, for it avoids the easy way of asking the reader to take statements on trust. For more information click here.

Offstage: The Royal Academy Centenary Portraits

Cambridge Jones (PPE, 1985)

Cambridge Jones (who also took the majority of the photographs in our own 'Christ Church, Oxford: A Portrait of The House') was commissioned to spend a year photographing 100 stars of stage and screen who trained at RADA. Everyone from Alan Rickman to Joan Collins and Tom Courtenay to Mike Leigh. It took him from the Austrian mountains to Malibu Beach and from EastEnders to ER. The foreword is by Lord Attenborough and interviews by Miranda Sawyer. Available from Amazon and all good book shops but if you buy it from RADA direct or his own website you will be donating 100% of the price to The Centenary Bursary he created to fund one student a year through RADA. Visit www.cambridgejones.com or the RADA website here.

Merde Happens

Stephen Clarke (Modern Languages, 1978)

In the third "Merde" novel, Englishman Paul West leaves his beloved Paris and accepts a job that involves him touring the USA in a Mini, putting on a series of events to promote Britain as a tourist destination. He is thus faced with the task of getting Americans to do the Highland Fling and recite Shakespeare, while managing the mood swings of his temperamental French girlfriend. For more info click here.

The Zurich Connection and Tudor Political Thought

Should students of Tudor political thought be interested in a feisty Swiss republican who hardly set foot outside his home canton of Zurich, and a Florentine aristocrat who spent just five years of his career in England?  This book presents the case for including two leading lights of the Schola Tigurina—Heinrich Bullinger and Peter Martyr Vermigli—among the chief architects of the protestant religious and political settlement constructed under Edward VI and consolidated under Elizabeth I.  Through study of selected texts of their political theology, this book explores crucial intellectual links between England and Zurich which came to exert a significant influence on the institutions of the Tudor church and commonwealth. Read More (www.brill.nl)

Last Boat for Africa

John Miller (Modern Languages, 1958)

I wrote this book for three reasons. First, out of a gratitude for the wonderful four years I enjoyed as District Officer in Swaziland in the 1960s. Second, to help counter the generally negative perception of our colonial past. And third, and most important, to try to raise Swaziland's profile. Swaziland is currently ravaged by drought, probably caused by global warming and it has the highest HIV/AIDs level in the world (42%). It desperately needs inward investment. As Deputy Prime Minister Albert Shabangu said last year, "If something is not done, the nation will cease to exist". I hope the book shows the Swazis are a delight and deserve to prosper. For more information please click here.

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