Some implications of "digital" for academic publishing

Category: Reviews

What is better than A to Z?

Hollier cover

Denis Hollier’s collective work A New History of French Literature (1989)  has a conventional-sounding title, but is anything but conventional in its arrangement. Instead of a chronological narrative, which is what the title suggests, or an A to Z listing of people and movements, which …

An illustration of how not do to it

Cover of the original edition – the title was later changed from “Glossary” to “Dictionary”

An Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture: sounds like the perfect combination, a book combining text with pictures just when you need it. Compiled by two experienced architectural writers, it looks …

A classic reference work from Philip Thody

Faux amis

Philip Thody and Howard Evans: Faux Amis and Key Words: a dictionary-guide to French Language, Culture and Society (1985) (published in the US as Mistakable French)

Reference books for learning a language include some of the dullest titles ever written. At least the …

Forthcoming reviews

Reviews to be posted in the new few weeks include:

Encyclopedias of the Enlightenment
– there are several; this batch enables a typical French academic reference to be compared with a volume for the US college market.

Dictionnaire de la pensée de Voltaire
You ask …

The great reference books: Haydn’s Dictionary of Dates

Here is the entry for “oak” from Haydn’s Dictionary of Dates, 1873 edition. This reference book, unique to the best of my knowledge, combines a brief definition or background, usually very brief, and some interesting significant dates around the topic. Here, for example, in the …

A few problems on the track: The Oxford Companion to British Railway History

There are a few rules for compiling reference works, and the utility of the publication is woefully compromised if those rules are not followed.

The Oxford Companion to British Railway History (1997) is a great book, and fascinating reading, but seen from the perspective of …

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