The British Academy and Oxford University Press have provided online access to 31 of the most recent volumes in Proceedings of the British Academy series free of charge for an extended period to help support distance research and learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The volumes span six years from 2014 to 2019 and include a total of 431 individual chapters and thousands of pages of scholarship on a variety of subjects in the humanities and social sciences.
Online readers anywhere in the world can search, browse and download scholarly essays on topics as diverse as Latin in medieval Britain, the politics of fiscal squeeze in perspective, coherence and diversity in music and AIDS and the rise of transnational connections in Africa.
Examples of the volumes now freely available to read online:
- In The Middle Ages in the Modern World: 21st Century Perspectives, scholars trace the influence of the culture of the Middle Ages in all areas of life, from the World of Warcraft and Lady Gaga’s use of medieval iconography to Republican politics and the films of Pasolini and Tarantino.
- Governing England: English Identity and Institutions in a Changing United Kingdom explores the awakening of the national consciousness leading up to the vote to leave the European Union in 2016 and with a range of different perspectives on the future for English nationhood.
- In Endangered Languages: Beliefs and Ideologies in Language Documentation and Revitalization scholars ask, why has the world experienced a decline in language diversity in the last century and are there reasons to halt this decline?
The full list includes titles of interest to medievalists, classicists, archaeologists, sociologists and students and scholars across the humanities and social sciences seeking recently published, high-quality academic material.
Professor Hamish Scott FBA, Vice-President (Publications) of the British Academy, said:
“During the pandemic and while there are restrictions on libraries and research facilities, it is more important than ever to make knowledge as widely available as possible, and to limit the disruption to student dissertations and research projects.
“This collection highlights the extraordinary range and diversity of the humanities and social sciences. As the UK’s leading academy for these disciplines, readers can feel assured that what these volumes provide is the very best of scholarship in the particular subject.
“The themed volumes in this series are intended to drive scholarship forward and stand as landmarks in their field, containing contributions from the world’s leading scholars.”
This move is part of a wider programme of activity being undertaken by the Academy to bring the humanities and social sciences into people’s homes while public events are paused.
In addition to a range of blogs by funded researchers and Fellows, the Academy is hosting short, thought-provoking 10-Minute Talks with leading scholars every Wednesday on YouTube Live at 13.00 and will soon share more details of the British Academy Summer Showcase, which takes place virtually on 18-20 June this year.