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"The Very Short Introductions series is a book series published by the Oxford University Press publishing house since 1995. Books in the series offer concise introductions to particular subjects, intended for a general audience but written by experts in the field. (For example, authors of VSI entries in philosophy include A. J. Ayer, Roger Scruton, A. C. Grayling, and Peter Singer.) Individual titles range from 96–224 pages in length, with most between 120–180, and nearly all contain suggestions for further reading. While authors may present personal viewpoints, the books are meant to be "balanced and complete" as well as thought provoking.
As of mid-2013, there are 352 titles in the series, with 30 more (and five updated editions) scheduled for publication by 2014. The publisher states that "the series will encompass every major academic discipline, offering all students an accessible and abundant reference library."
The VSI series has been very commercially successful. By 2011, Oxford University Press was giving sales figures for the series as over five million copies worldwide, and VSI books have been published in more than 25 languages.
Most of the books were written specifically for the VSI series, but around 60 first had life as previous OUP publications. For example, several of the earlier VSI volumes were initially published as part of OUP's Past Masters series, or (in the case of numbers 17–24) as chapters by different authors from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain (1984)."
截至2009年4月，该系列丛书已达200多本，包括历史, 神学, 文艺理论, 科学哲学, 后现代主义, 情绪, 动物权利, 伦理, 莎士比亚, 休谟, 恐怖主义, 西班牙内战 以及进化论。出版商表示"该系列丛书将会涵盖所有的主要学科, 为所有读者提供一个可读性强且包罗万千的工具书图书馆。"牛津大学出版社在介绍该丛书时称：“充满生气且流畅易读如斯，该系列丛书将改变你对所感兴趣之主题的思考方式；对于那些你未曾涉猎的领域，丛书又堪为绝佳的入门引领。”
----@枪气如虹EBOOK（PDF）: [ 82gx ]
"This Very Short Introduction looks at Africa's past and reflects on the changing ways it has been imagined and represented, both in Africa and beyond. The author illustrates important aspects of Africa's history with a range of fascinating historical examples, drawn from over 5 millennia across this vast continent. The multitude of topics that the reader will learn about in this succinct work include the unity and diversity of African cultures, slavery, religion, colonial conquest, the diaspora, and the importance of history in understanding contemporary Africa. The book examines questions such as: Who invented the idea of "Africa"? How is African history pieced together, given such a lack of documentary evidence? How did Africa interact with the world 1,000 years ago?
Africa has been known as 'the cradle of mankind', and its recoverable history stretches back to the Pharaohs. But the idea of studying African history is itself new, and the authors show why it is still contested and controversial. This VSI, the first concise work of its kind, will prove essential reading for anyone interested in the African continent and the diversity of human history."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ khzf ]
Chimamanda Adichie: The Danger of the Single Story
"They make one story become the only story"
"This is a historical account of feminism that looks at the roots of feminism, voting rights, and the liberation of the sixties, and analyzes the current situation of women across Europe, in the United States, and elsewhere in the world, particularly the Third World countries. Walters examines the difficulties and inequities that women still face, more than forty years after the "new wave" of 1960s feminism--difficulties, particularly, in combining domesticity, motherhood and work outside the home. How much have women's lives really changed? In the West, women still come up against the "glass ceiling" at work, with most earning considerably less than their male counterparts. What are we to make of the now commonplace insistence that feminism deprives men of their rights and dignities? And how does one tackle the issue of female emancipation in different cultural and economic environments--in, for example, Islam, Hinduism, the Middle East, Africa, and the Indian sub-continent?"
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ ciuv ]
"Global warming is arguably the most critical and controversial issue facing the world in the twenty-first century, one that will affect every living creature on the planet. It is also an extraordinarily complex problem, which everyone needs to understand as clearly and completely as possible. This Very Short Introduction provides a concise and accessible explanation of the key aspects of global warming. Mark Maslin discusses how and why changes are occurring, sets current warming trends in the context of past climate change, examines the predicted impact of global warming, as well as the political controversies of recent years and the many proposed solutions. Fully updated for 2008, this compelling account offers the best current scientific understanding of global warming, describing recent developments in US policy and the UK Climate Change Bill, where we now stand with the Kyoto Protocol, and the latest findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Maslin also includes a chapter on local solutions, reflecting the now widely held view that, to mitigate any impending disaster, governments as well as individuals must to act together."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ psih ]
"The recent discovery of the diminutive Homo floresiensis (nicknamed "the Hobbit") in Indonesia has sparked new interest in the study of human evolution. In this Very Short Introduction, renowned evolutionary scholar Bernard Wood traces the history of paleoanthropology from its beginnings in the eighteenth century to today's latest fossil finds. Along the way we are introduced to the lively cast of characters, past and present, involved in evolutionary research. Although concentrating on the fossil evidence for human evolution, the book also covers the latest genetic evidence about regional variations in the modern human genome that relate to our evolutionary history. Wood draws on over thirty years of experience to provide an insiders view of the field, and demonstrates that our understanding of human evolution is critically dependent on advances in related sciences such as paleoclimatology, geochronology, systematics, genetics, and developmental biology. This is an ideal introduction for anyone interested in the origins and development of humankind."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ 9rq5 ]
Philosophy of Science
"What is science? Is there a real difference between science and myth? Is science objective? Can science explain everything? This Very Short Introduction provides a concise overview of the main themes of contemporary philosophy of science.
Beginning with a short history of science to set the scene, Samir Okasha goes on to investigate the nature of scientific reasoning, scientific explanation, revolutions in science, and theories such as realism and anti-realism. He also looks at philosophical issues in particular sciences, including the problem of classification in biology, and the nature of space and time in physics. The final chapter touches on the conflicts between science and religion, and explores whether science is ultimately a good thing."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ 3vsu ]
"Quantum Theory is the most revolutionary discovery in physics since Newton. This book gives a lucid, exciting, and accessible account of the surprising and counterintuitive ideas that shape our understanding of the sub-atomic world. It does not disguise the problems of interpretation that still remain unsettled 75 years after the initial discoveries. The main text makes no use of equations, but there is a Mathematical Appendix for those desiring stronger fare. Uncertainty, probabilistic physics, complementarity, the problematic character of measurement, and decoherence are among the many topics discussed. This volume offers the reader access to one of the greatest discoveries in the history of physics and one of the outstanding intellectual achievements of the twentieth century."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ 409r ]
The Roman Empire
"The Roman Empire was a remarkable achievement. It had a population of sixty million people spread across lands encircling the Mediterranean and stretching from northern England to the sun-baked banks of the Euphrates, and from the Rhine to the North African coast. It was, above all else, an empire of force--employing a mixture of violence, suppression, order, and tactical use of power to develop an astonishingly uniform culture.
Here, historian Christopher Kelly covers the history of the Empire from Augustus to Marcus Aurelius, describing the empire's formation, and its political, religious, cultural, and social structures. It looks at the daily lives of the Empire's people: both those in Rome as well as those living in its furthest colonies. Romans used astonishing logistical feats, political savvy, and military oppression to rule their vast empire. This Very Short Introduction examines how they "romanised" the cultures they conquered, imposing their own culture in order to subsume them completely. The book also looks at how the Roman Empire has been considered and depicted in more recent times, from the writings of Edward Gibbon to the Hollywood blockbuster Gladiator. It will prove a valuable introduction for readers interested in classical history."
----amazon.comAudioBook: [ 4hp8 ]百度云注册邀请链接