Modern Japan A Very Short Introduction

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Modern Japan A Very Short Introduction

Author : Christopher Goto-Jones
ISBN : 9780191568213
Genre : History
File Size : 20.59 MB
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Japan is arguably today's most successful industrial economy, combining almost unprecedented affluence with social stability and apparent harmony. Japanese goods and cultural products are consumed all over the world, ranging from animated movies and computer games all the way through to cars, semiconductors, and management techniques. In many ways, Japan is an icon of the modern world, and yet it remains something of an enigma to many, who see it as a confusing montage of the alien and the familiar, the ancient and modern. The aim of this Very Short Introduction is to explode the myths and explore the reality of modern Japan - by taking a concise look at its history, economy, politics, and culture. 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.
Category: History

Japanese Literature A Very Short Introduction

Author : Alan Tansman
ISBN : 0199765251
Genre :
File Size : 78.24 MB
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With a history stretching back nearly 1,500 years, written works originating from Japan encompass a vast range of forms and genres. Since the eighth century, poetry and the non-philosophical lyric voice have occupied a central position in Japanese cultural life. The art of narrative would soon follow, blossoming in the eleventh century with one of the world's great literary masterpieces, Murasaki Shikibu's The Tale of Genji. Japanese literature later developed other genres no less important than poetry and narrative, among them the diary, the free-flowing essay, drama, the picture book, and the literary treatise. While intensely attentive to its own tradition, Japanese literature has also embraced the outside world, particularly the influence of China. It is also embraced by the outside world in turn, exporting bestselling authors such as Haruki Murakami and Yukio Mishima. Beyond this, Japan boasts a powerful literary culture, made up of cultivated reading publics, both aristocratic and bourgeois, literary salons, specialized presses, authoritative judges of talent who cultivated and celebrated particular writers and styles, and a canon consisting of classics. A succinct introduction to one of the most dynamic and diverse world literatures, this Very Short Introduction traces the rich history of Japanese literature from its beginnings over a millennium ago to the present day.
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Modern Brazil A Very Short Introduction

Author : Anthony W. Pereira
ISBN : 9780198812081
Genre : History
File Size : 42.12 MB
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Anthony Pereira introduces the country and idea of Brazil, from its depiction in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, to Brazil's colonial past, and the country's transformation from a poor agricultural outpost to an integral part of the 21st century global order. Throughout he considers the economic, political, and social challenges the country faces.
Category: History

Contemporary Art A Very Short Introduction

Author : Julian Stallabrass
ISBN : 9780198826620
Genre :
File Size : 53.47 MB
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Contemporary art has never been so popular - but the art world is changing. In a landscape of increasing globalization there is growing interest in questions over the nature of contemporary art today, and the identity of who is controlling its future. In the midst of this, contemporary art continues to be a realm of freedom where artists shock, break taboos, flout generally received ideas, and switch between confronting viewers with works of great emotional profundity and jaw-dropping triviality. In this Very Short Introduction Julian Stallabrass gives a clear view on the diverse and rapidly moving scene of contemporary art. Exploring art's striking globalisation from the 1990s onwards, he analyses how new regions and nations, such as China, have leapt into astonishing prominence, over-turning the old Euro-American dominance on aesthetics. Showing how contemporary art has drawn closer to fashion and the luxury goods market as artists have become accomplished marketers of their work, Stallabrass discusses the reinvention of artists as brands. This new edition also considers how once powerful art criticism has mutated into a critical and performative writing at which many artists excel. Above all, behind the insistent rhetoric of freedom and ambiguity in art, Stallabrass explores how big business and the super-rich have replaced the state as the primary movers of the contemporary art scene, especially since the financial crisis, and become a powerful new influence over the art 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.
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Philosophy A Very Short Introduction

Author : Edward Craig
ISBN : 9780198861775
Genre :
File Size : 24.3 MB
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How ought we to live? What really exists? How do we know? Edward Craig discusses some of the key questions philosophy engages with. He explores important themes in ethics, knowledge, and the self, alongside a new chapter for this edition on free will, discussing determinism and indeterminism in the context of Descartes and Hegel's work.
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Socialism A Very Short Introduction

Author : Michael Newman
ISBN : 9780198836421
Genre :
File Size : 84.66 MB
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Exploring the role of socialism over the last two hundred years, Michael Newman explains its major theories, and the key challenges facing it today. Drawing on case studies such as Bolivia and Cuba, he considers recent attempts to put socialism into practice, and argues that it remains ultimately relevant in today's world.
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Postcolonialism A Very Short Introduction

Author : Robert J. C. Young
ISBN : 9780198856832
Genre : History
File Size : 38.36 MB
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Since the 1960s, many people around the world have challenged the idea that western perspectives are the only ones that count. This book examines the history of that challenge, outlining the ideas behind it, and showing the ways in which the histories and the cultures of the world can be rethought in new, different and productive directions.
Category: History

Modern China

Author : Rana Mitter
ISBN : 9780198753704
Genre :
File Size : 32.96 MB
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China today is never out of the news: from international finance to human rights controversies, global coverage of its rising international presence, and the Chinese 'economic miracle'. It seems to be a country of contradictions: a peasant society with some of the world's most futuristic cities, heir to an ancient civilization that is still trying to find a modern identity. This Very Short Introduction offers the reader an entry to understanding the world's most populous nation, giving an integrated picture of modern Chinese society, culture, economy, politics, and art. In this new edition, Rana Mitter addresses China's current global position, accounting for the country's growth in global significance over the past decade. 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.
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Pilgrimage

Author : Ian Reader
ISBN : 9780198718222
Genre : Religion
File Size : 49.39 MB
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"Presents pilgrimage in a global and historical context. Using a wide range of examples, Reader explores how people take part in and experience their pilgrimages, and what they take back from their journeys, He concludes by examining why pilgrimages appear to be so popular in our increasingly secular age."--Front flap
Category: Religion

The Metaphysics Of Modernity

Author : Ulrich Steinvorth
ISBN : UCSD:31822041283227
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 52.70 MB
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Does the modern age have a specific attitude to the world, a way to make sense of the myriad stimuli that impinge on human organisms or, as I call it, a metaphysics? This book claims it has. It shows that what crucially changed Europe from the 16th century on was the spreading idea that things are best done for their own sake, for goals inherent in an activity, such as the goal of telling a good story or having a lively chat, inheres in the telling or chatting itself. The Renaissance took this idea from the ancients who also preferred intrinsic goals to extrinsic ones; but the moderns discovered that the pursuit of intrinsic goals follows an immanent rationality that sets perfection standards to the activity. Thus, they could and did perfect activities that in antiquity had remained on the level of dabbling leisure-time activities, and transformed them into professions that we know today as theology, science, political theory, the arts, sports, or journalism. The European bourgeoisie, though, performed the most revolutionary yet also suicidal change. They made traditional trade, the pursuit of the extrinsic goal of acquiring money, into an activity done for its own sake and enforced autonomy for its sphere, just as the religious had enforced autonomy for their religious activities already in the 11th century. They were so successful that they could take over the command of production in the industrial revolution and impose on all other spheres of society their goal of private profitability. This was the historical end of the metaphysics of modernity. But this book also argues that its principle, the preference of intrinsic to extrinsic goals, is still the best attitude to the world we can choose and that it is the best starting point for solving many problems of contemporary societies.
Category: Philosophy

Southeast Asia A Very Short Introduction

Author : James R. Rush
ISBN : 9780190248765
Genre : History
File Size : 64.27 MB
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Straddling the equator, Southeast Asia comprises Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Singapore, and the Philippines, as well as Laos, Cambodia, Brunei, and East Timor. Despite its extraordinary diversity of ethnicities, religions, and political systems, Southeast Asia plays a keyrole in global economies and geopolitics, especially in light of its strategic position bordering China and India. This Very Short Introduction explores the contemporary character of Southeast Asia's national societies through the lens of their historical evolution, from the eras of indigenouskingdoms and colonies under Western rule to the present's independent nation states. Deftly combining historical analysis and geopolitical insights, the book paints a bird's eye view of contemporary Southeast Asia as a community of diverse societies and traditions as well as a politicaltheater-of-action nested between India and China and tangled in global economic traffic patterns, balance of powers, and environmental forces.As James R. Rush explains, archaic structures, such as religious and ethnic rivalries, tenacious feudal hierarchies, and age-old trade and migration patterns, remain rooted in today's Southeast Asia beneath the surface of modern national governments. The book draws on a wide range of examples fromthe major nations, including the ethno-religious violence in Myanmar, the Muslim-led rebellion in the southern Philippines, the Thai-Cambodian territorial rivalries, the Confucian-inspired governance in Singapore, the military rule and democratization in Indonesia, the environmental consequences ofagribusiness, mining, and unchecked urbanization, and the big-power alignments and tensions involving the United States, China, and Japan. By delving into the cultural, political, and geographical background of Southeast Asia, Rush shows that Southeast Asia is unquestionably modern, but it is modernin distinctively Southeast Asian ways.
Category: History

Ethnomusicology A Very Short Introduction

Author : Timothy Rice
ISBN : 9780199794379
Genre : Music
File Size : 45.50 MB
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Ethnomusicology, an academic discipline founded in 1950, has been defined as the study of the music of others. This definition, at once whimsical and very nearly true, is incomplete. Many of its strongest threads have emerged because a person or a people have wanted to understand themselves, their history, and their identity.
Category: Music

Theatre

Author : Marvin Carlson
ISBN : 9780199669820
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 59.48 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.
Category: Performing Arts

Nationalism A Very Short Introduction

Author : Steven Elliott Grosby
ISBN : 9780192840981
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 67.20 MB
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Throughout history, humanity has borne witness to the political and moral challenges that arise when people place national identity above allegiance to geo-political states or international communities. This book discusses the concept of nations and nationalism from social, philosophical, geological, theological and anthropological perspectives. It examines the subject through conflicts past and present, including recent conflicts in the Balkans and the Middle East, rather than exclusively focusing on theory. Above all, this fascinating and comprehensive work clearly shows how feelings of nationalism are an inescapable part of being human.
Category: Philosophy

Design A Very Short Introduction

Author : John Heskett
ISBN : 0192854461
Genre : Art
File Size : 47.12 MB
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John Heskett aims to transform the way readers think about design by showing how integral it is to our daily lives, from the spoon we use to eat our breakfast cereal, and the car we drive to work in, to the medical equipment used to save lives. This concise guide to contemporary design goes beyond style and taste to look at how different cultures and individuals personalize objects. Heskett also reveals how simple objects, such as a toothpick, can have their design modified to suit the specific cultural behaviour in different countries. Finally, the author gives us an exciting vision of what design can offer us in the future, showing in particular how it can humanize new technology.
Category: Art

Modern China A Very Short Introduction

Author : Rana Mitter
ISBN : 9780191578793
Genre : History
File Size : 43.70 MB
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China today is never out of the news: from human rights controversies and the continued legacy of Tiananmen Square, to global coverage of the Beijing Olympics, and the Chinese 'economic miracle'. It seems a country of contradictions: a peasant society with some of the world's most futuristic cities, heir to an ancient civilization that is still trying to find a modern identity. This Very Short Introduction offers the reader with no previous knowledge of China a variety of ways to understand the world's most populous nation, giving a short, integrated picture of modern Chinese society, culture, economy, politics and art. 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.
Category: History

Imagining Communities In Thailand

Author : Shigeharu Tanabe
ISBN : UOM:39015073630611
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 56.6 MB
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Explores newly emerging communities in Thailand
Category: Political Science

Medical Law A Very Short Introduction

Author : Charles Foster
ISBN : 9780191636004
Genre : Law
File Size : 34.98 MB
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Medical law is concerned with our bodies, and what happens to them during and after our lives. When things go wrong with our bodies, we want to know what our rights are, and what governs the conduct of the clinicians into whose hands we put our lives and limbs. Dealing with matters of life and death, it can therefore have a fundamental impact on medical practice. Headlines in the media often involve the core issues of medical law - organ transplantation, abortion, withdrawal of treatment, euthanasia, confidentiality, research on humans - these are topics that affect us all. Headlines can misrepresent, however. In order to fully understand the issues and their relevance, we have to delve into the cases and into the principles behind them. In this highly readable Very Short Introduction, Charles Foster explores different examples to illustrate the key problems and principles of medical law. 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.
Category: Law