Medieval Literature

Author: Elaine Treharne
Editor: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199668493
File Size: 18,44 MB
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This Very Short Introduction provides a compelling account of the emergence of the earliest literature in Britain and Ireland, including English, Welsh, Scottish, Irish, Anglo-Latin and Anglo-Norman. Introducing the reader to some of the greatest poetry, prose and drama ever written, Elaine Treharne discusses the historical and intellectual background to these works, and considers the physical production of the manuscripts and the earliest beginnings of print culture. Covering both well-known texts, such as Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales and the Mabinogion, as well as texts that are much less familiar, such as sermons, saints' lives, lyrics and histories, Treharne discusses major themes such as sin and salvation, kingship and authority, myth and the monstrous, and provides a full, but brief, account of one of the major periods in literary history. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Medieval Philosophy

Author: John Marenbon
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019966322X
File Size: 56,59 MB
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For many of us, the term 'medieval philosophy' conjures up the figure of Thomas Aquinas, and is closely intertwined with religion. In this Very Short Introduction John Marenbon shows how medieval philosophy had a far broader reach than the thirteenth and fourteenth-century universities of Christian Europe, and is instead one of the most exciting and diversified periods in the history of thought. Introducing the coexisting strands of Christian, Muslim, and Jewish philosophy, Marenbon shows how these traditions all go back to the Platonic schools of late antiquity and explains the complex ways in which they are interlinked. Providing an overview of some of the main thinkers, such as Boethius, Abelard, al-Farabi, Avicenna, Maimonides, and Gersonides, and the topics, institutions and literary forms of medieval philosophy, he discusses in detail some of the key issues in medieval thought: universals; mind, body and mortality; foreknowledge and freedom; society and the best life. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Middle Ages

Author: Miri Rubin
Editor: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199697299
File Size: 48,52 MB
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The Middle Ages (c.500-1500) includes a thousand years of European history. In this Very Short Introduction Miri Rubin tells the story of the times through the people and their lifestyles. Including stories of kingship and Christian salvation, agriculture and trade, Rubin demonstrates the remarkable nature and legacy of the Middle Ages.

Italian Literature A Very Short Introduction

Author: Peter Hainsworth
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199231796
File Size: 70,87 MB
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In this Very Short Introduction to Italian Literature, Peter Hainsworth and David Robey examine Italian literature from the Middle Ages up to the present day, looking at themes and issues which have recurred throughout its history and continue to be of importance today.

Medieval Britain A Very Short Introduction

Author: John Gillingham
Editor: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191606529
File Size: 45,24 MB
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First published as part of the best-selling The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, John Gillingham and Ralph A. Griffiths' Very Short Introduction to Medieval Britain covers the establishment of the Anglo-Norman monarchy in the early Middle Ages, through to England's failure to dominate the British Isles and France in the later Middle Ages. Out of the turbulence came stronger senses of identity in Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. Yet this was an age, too, of growing definition of Englishness and of a distinctive English cultural tradition. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

German Literature A Very Short Introduction

Author: Nicholas Boyle
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199206597
File Size: 70,58 MB
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German writers, be it Goethe, Nietzsche, Marx, Brecht or Mann, have had a profound influence on the modern world. This Very Short Introduction illuminates the particular character and power of German literature, and examines its impact on the wider cultural world.

Spanish Literature A Very Short Introduction

Author: Jo Labanyi
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199208050
File Size: 10,34 MB
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This Very Short Introduction introduces the ways in which Spanish literature has been read, in and outside Spain, explaining misconceptions, outlining the insights of recent scholarship, and suggesting new readings. It explores the relationship between Spanish literature and modernity and issues of gender and sexuality.

Dante

Author: Peter Hainsworth
Editor: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199684774
File Size: 71,77 MB
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In this Very Short Introduction, Peter Hainsworth and David Robey take a different approach to Dante, by examining the main themes and issues that run through all of his work, ranging from autobiography, to understanding God and the order of the universe. In doing so, they highlight what has made Dante a vital point of reference for modern writers and readers, both inside and outside Italy. They emphasize the distinctive and dynamic interplay in Dante's writing between argument, ideas, and analysis on the one hand, and poetic imagination on the other. Dante was highly concerned with the political and intellectual issues of his time, demonstrated most powerfully in his notorious work, The Divine Comedy. Tracing the tension between the medieval and modern aspects, Hainsworth and Robey provide a clear insight into the meaning of this masterpiece of world literature. They highlight key figures and episodes in the poem, bringing out the originality and power of Dante's writing to help readers understand the problems that Dante wanted his audience to confront but often left up to the reader to resolve. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

French Literature A Very Short Introduction

Author: John D. Lyons
Editor: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191614238
File Size: 72,52 MB
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The heritage of literature in the French language is rich, varied, and extensive in time and space; appealing both to its immediate public, readers of French, and also to a global audience reached through translations and film adaptations. The first great works of this repertory were written in the twelfth century in northern France, and now, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, include authors writing in many parts of the world, ranging from the Caribbean to Western Africa. French Literature: A Very Short Introduction introduces this lively literary world by focusing on texts - epics, novels, plays, poems, and screenplays - that concern protagonists whose adventures and conflicts reveal shifts in literary and social practices. From the hero of the medieval Song of Roland to the Caribbean heroines of I, Tituba, Black Witch of Salem or the European expatriate in Japan in Fear and Trembling, these problematic protagonists allow us to understand what interests writers and readers across the wide world of French. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Anglo Saxon Age A Very Short Introduction

Author: John Blair
Editor: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 0192854038
File Size: 69,51 MB
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First published as part of the best-selling The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, John Blair's Very Short Introduction to the Anglo-Saxon Age covers the emergence of the earliest English settlements to the Norman victory in 1066. This book is a brief introduction to the political, social, religious, and cultural history of Anglo-Saxon England. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Geoffrey Chaucer A Very Short Introduction

Author: David Wallace
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0191080373
File Size: 28,36 MB
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Originally writing over 600 years ago, Geoffrey Chaucer is today enjoying a global renaissance. Why do poets, translators, and audiences from so many cultures, from the mountains of Iran to the islands of Japan, find Chaucer so inspiring? In part this is down to the character and sheer inventiveness of Chaucer's work. At the time Chaucer's writings were not just literary adventures, but also a means of convincing the world that poetry and science, tragedy and astrology, could all be explored through the English language. French was still England's aristocratic language of choice when Chaucer was born; Latin was used for university education, theological discussion, and for burying the dead. Could a hybrid tongue such as English ever generate great writing to compare with French and Latin? Chaucer, miraculously, believed that it could, through gradual expansion of expressiveness and scientific precision. He was never paid to do this; he was valued, rather, as a capable civil servant, regulating the export of wool and the building of seating for royal tournaments. Such experiences, however, fed his writing, leading him to achieve a range of social registers, from noble tragedy to barnyard farce, unrivalled for centuries. His tale-telling geography is vast, his fascination with varieties of religious belief endless, and his desire to voice female experience especially remarkable. Many Chaucerian poets and performers, today, are women. In this Very Short Introduction David Wallace introduces the life, performance, and poetry of Chaucer, and analyses his astonishing and enduring appeal. Previously published in hardback as Geoffrey Chaucer: A New Introduction ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

History A Very Short Introduction

Author: John Arnold
Editor: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 019285352X
File Size: 16,37 MB
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Starting with an examination of how historians work, this "Very Short Introduction" aims to explore history in a general, pithy, and accessible manner, rather than to delve into specific periods.

The Vikings

Author: J. D. Richards
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192806076
File Size: 14,64 MB
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Highlighting the latest archaeological evidence, Julian Richards reveals the whole Viking world: their history, society and culture, and their expansion overseas for trade, colonization, and plunder.

Kabbalah

Author: Joseph Dan
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0195327055
File Size: 25,71 MB
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An account of Kabbalah and its impact outside of Judaism offers a concise and highly accurate look at the history and character of the various systems developed by the adherents of the Kabbalah.

Theatre

Author: Marvin Carlson
Editor: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199669821
File Size: 41,60 MB
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Theatre is one of the longest-standing art forms of modern civilization. Taking a global look at how various forms of theatre - including puppetry, dance, and mime - have been interpreted and enjoyed, this Very Short Introduction explores all aspects of the theatre, including its relationship with religion, literature, and its value worldwide.

Poetry A Very Short Introduction

Author: Bernard O'Donoghue
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192545280
File Size: 64,60 MB
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Poetry, arguably, has a greater range of conceptual meaning than perhaps any other term in English. At the most basic level everyone can recognise it—it is a kind of literature that uses special linguistic devices of organization and expression for aesthetic effect. However, far grander claims have been made for poetry than this—such as Shelley's that the poets 'are the unacknowledged legislators of the world', and that poetry is 'a higher truth'. In this Very Short Introduction, Bernard O'Donoghue provides a fascinating look at the many different forms of writing which have been called 'poetry'—from the Greeks to the present day. As well as questioning what poetry is, he asks what poetry is for, and considers contemporary debates on its value. Is there a universality to poetry? And does it have a duty of public utility and responsibility? ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Early Music A Very Short Introduction

Author: Thomas Forrest Kelly
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199831890
File Size: 25,42 MB
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From Gregorian chant to Bach's Brandenburg Concerti, the music of the Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque periods is both beautiful and intriguing, expanding our horizons as it nourishes our souls. In this Very Short Introduction, Thomas Forrest Kelly provides not only a compact overview of the music itself, but also a lively look at the many attempts over the last two centuries to revive it. Kelly shows that the early-music revival has long been grounded in the idea of spontaneity, of excitement, and of recapturing experiences otherwise lost to us--either the rediscovery of little-known repertories or the recovery of lost performing styles, with the conviction that, with the right performance, the music will come to life anew. Blending musical and social history, he shows how the Early Music movement in the 1960s took on political overtones, fueled by a rebellion against received wisdom and enforced conformity. Kelly also discusses ongoing debates about authenticity, the desirability of period instruments, and the relationship of mainstream opera companies and symphony orchestras to music that they often ignore, or play in modern fashion.

Conscience A Very Short Introduction

Author: Paul Strohm
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019956969X
File Size: 41,17 MB
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Where does our conscience come from, and how reliable is it? Exploring its deep historical roots, Paul Strohm considers what conscience has meant to successive generations. Using examples from popular culture and contemporary politics he demonstrates that conscience is as important today as it ever has been.

Monasticism A Very Short Introduction

Author: Stephen J. Davis
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198717644
File Size: 42,95 MB
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Monasticism is a social and religious phenomenon which originated in antiquity and which still remains relevant in the twenty-first century. But what, exactly, is it, and how is it distinguished from other kinds of religious and non-religious practice? In this Very Short Introduction Stephen J. Davis discusses the history of monasticism, from our earliest evidence for it, and the different types which have developed from antiquity to the present day. He considers where monasteries are located, from East Asia to North America, and everywhere in between, and how their settings impact the everyday life and worldview of the monks and nuns who dwell there. Exploring how monastic communities are organized, he also looks at how aspects of life like food, sleep, sex, work, and prayer are regimented. Finally, Davis discusses what the stories about saints communicate about monastic identity and ethics, and considers what place there is for monasticism in the modern world. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Crusades A Very Short Introduction

Author: Christopher Tyerman
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192806556
File Size: 67,67 MB
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Crusading fervour gripped Europe for over 200 years, creating one of the most extraordinary, vivid episodes in world history. Whether the Crusades are regarded as the most romantic of Christian expeditions, or the last of the barbarian invasions, they have fascinated generations ever since. Were the Crusaders motivated by spiritual rewards, or by greed? Were they an experiment in European colonialism, or a manifestation of religious love? How were they organized and founded? Christopher Tyerman picks his way through the many debates to present a clear and lively discussion of the Crusades; bringing together issues of colonialism, cultural exchange, economic exploitation, and the relationship between past and present.