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Regions and higher education in difficult times

The concept of the learning region is central to the way of problem-solving. Like 'lifelong learning' the term is used variously and carelessly. This book explores the meaning and importance of the learning region. Not all universities warm to such local-regional engagement. The unwise pride of global forces and nations undermines it; but even the most prestigious and 'global' university has a local footprint and ever-watchful neighbours. The book arises from the work of PASCAL, an international non-governmental network Observatory. Its name exploits echoes of philosophical depth as well as technical modernity of language, taking the concepts of Place, Social Capital and Learning together with the vital connecting conjunctions of And, to define its mission. At the heart of the story is PASCAL's experience of working with multiple regions and their universities on their experience with engagement. The book examines in turn several central strands mainly of policy but also of process that are illuminated by the PASCAL Universities and Regional Engagement (PURE) project. The PURE processes and outcomes, despite limitations and severe disruption by forces located outside the region and often too the nation, show the potential gain from international networking and shared activities. The book also discusses internal arrangements within the administration before turning to external relations: both with the university and tertiary sector and with other stakeholders in the private and third sectors. Regional innovation systems require entrepreneurialism inside government, higher education and training, as well as within industry from small and medium enterprises to multinationals.

Author: Ian Burney

This book explores how contemporary observers located criminal poisoning within a multi-layered network of historical and cultural references. It focuses on the painstaking attempts to construct a 'modern' conceptual and legislative framework for containing the threat posed by criminal poisoning. The book discusses the efforts to delineate the terms of scientific engagement with modern poison and then presents an analysis of how toxicological work was undertaken and represented. In motive and means, William Palmer's was the quintessential 'crime of civilization', and it shows how his case was enmeshed with a core set of concerns about the social and cultural underpinnings of a self-consciously 'modern' Britain. The book examines toxicology in the aftermath of the Palmer trial, showing how the tensions it highlighted within the imaginative landscape of Victorian poisoning led to an implosion of the toxicological project. The epic framing of toxicology's struggles with poison and the poisoner yielded to two (seemingly contradictory) revisions: on the one hand, to a more modest, less individually heroic role for the poison hunter, a vision of expertise as the collective application of consensually developed knowledge; and, on the other, to a literary reworking of the constitutive elements of toxicology's quest for mastery, a transposed re-articulation of the fraught relationship between poison, detection, and the Victorian imagination.

This book analyses the oratorical and rhetorical techniques of twelve leading orators who have affected the evolution of Labour Party politics in the post-war period, and demonstrates the important role of oratory. The twelve leading orators are Aneurin Bevan, Hugh Gaitskell, Tony Benn, Harold Wilson, James Callaghan, Barbara Castle, Michael Foot, Neil Kinnock, John Smith, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and Ed Miliband. The book considers how the politician in question used their oratorical skills in relation to three key audiences: the Parliamentary Party; the wider party membership; and the electorate. These audiences relate to three important oratorical arenas, namely Parliament; party conference; public and media engagement (the electoral arena). The book assesses how political rhetoric has been deployed in an effort to advance competing ideological positions within the party, and the role of oratory in communicating Labour's ideology to a wider audience. It argues that oratory remains a significant feature of Labour politics in Britain, and analyses how it has changed over time and in different contexts. A small (but growing) number of scholars have energised the study of rhetoric in British politics, and brought it more mainstream attention in the discipline. The academic study of the art of oratory has received relatively little attention from scholars interested in British politics.

Challenges and opportunities

This book explores the evolving African security paradigm in light of the multitude of diverse threats facing the continent and the international community today and in the decades ahead. It challenges current thinking and traditional security constructs as woefully inadequate to meet the real security concerns and needs of African governments in a globalized world. The continent has becoming increasingly integrated into an international security architecture, whereby Africans are just as vulnerable to threats emanating from outside the continent as they are from home-grown ones. Thus, Africa and what happens there, matters more than ever. Through an in-depth examination and analysis of the continent’s most pressing traditional and non-traditional security challenges—from failing states and identity and resource conflict to terrorism, health, and the environment—it provides a solid intellectual foundation, as well as practical examples of the complexities of the modern African security environment. Not only does it assess current progress at the local, regional, and international level in meeting these challenges, it also explores new strategies and tools for more effectively engaging Africans and the global community through the human security approach.

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Objects, disciplines and the Manchester Museum

At the turn of the nineteenth century, museums in Europe and North America were at their largest and most powerful. New buildings were bigger; objects flooded into them, and more people visited them than ever before. The Manchester Museum is an ideal candidate for understanding cultures of display in twentieth-century Britain. It is a treasure trove of some four million priceless objects that are irreplaceable and unique. Like many large European collections, the origins of the Manchester Museum are to be found in a private cabinet: that of John Leigh Philips. This book traces the fate of his cabinet from his death in 1814. The establishment of the Manchester Natural History Society (MNHS) allowed naturalists to carve out a space in Manchester's cultural landscape. The Manchester Museum's development was profoundly affected by the history of the University in which it operated. In January 1868, the Natural History Society formally dissolved, and an interim commission took control of its collections; the Manchester Geological Society transferred its collections the following year. The new collection was to be purely scientific, comprising geology, zoology and botany, with no place for some of the more exotic specimens of the Society. The objects in the collection became part of Manchester's civic identity, bringing with them traces of science, empire and the exotic. Other museological changes were afoot in the 1990s. Natural history collections became key sites for public engagement with environmental issues and biodiversity and more recently as sites for exhibiting art.

The 'Indian Room' label from Osterley's bell-pull system illustrates the economic and cultural aspects of the relationship between country houses and the British Empire. This book is a study of that relationship, of the ways in which country houses like Osterley served as venues for the expression of personal and national imperial engagement between 1700 and 1930. A rare scholarly analysis of the history of country houses that goes beyond an architectural or biographical study, and recognises their importance as the physical embodiments of imperial wealth and reflectors of imperial cultural influences, is presented. The book assesses the economic and cultural links between country houses and the Empire. In terms of imperial values, country houses expressed both the economic and cultural impact of empire. Carr and Gladstone were only two of the many examples of colonial merchants who turned landed magnates. Nabobs - men who made their fortunes either as employees of the East India Company or as 'free traders' in India - were willing to risk their lives in pursuit of wealth. Like nabobs, planters went to the colonies in search of wealth and were prepared to spend substantial time there in order to accumulate it. Military and naval were among categories of people who purchased landed estates with imperial wealth. The book identifies four discourses of empire - commodities, cosmopolitanism, conquest and collecting - that provided the basic categories in which empire was represented in country-house context.

From modest shoot to forward plant
Author: Sam George

The stereotype of the forward, sexually precocious female botanist made its first appearance in literature in the turbulent revolutionary climate of the 1790s. The emergence of this figure illustrates both the contemporary appeal, particularly to women, of the Linnaean Sexual System of botanical classification, and the anxieties surrounding female modesty that it provoked. This book explores the cultivation of the female mind and the feminised discourse of botanical literature in eighteenth-century Britain. In particular, it discusses British women's engagement with the Swedish botanist, Carl Linnaeus, and his unsettling discovery of plant sexuality. The book also explores nationality and sexuality debates in relation to botany and charts the appearance of a new literary stereotype, the sexually precocious female botanist. It investigates the cultivation of the female mind and its implications for the theories of the feminised discourse of botanical literature. The book also investigates a process of feminisation of botany in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's and Priscilla Wakefield's letters on botany; these were literary and educational texts addressed specifically to women. Linnaean classification exemplified order, making botany an ideal discipline for young British women in the eighteenth century. Erasmus Darwin's explicit discussion of sexuality related to the aura of illicit sexuality that had surrounded Sir Joseph Banks. Richard Polwhele appropriates Collinsonia's image of the promiscuous female to allude to Mary Wollstonecraft's sexuality, drawing on forward plants in Darwin and Thomas Mathias. The book finally looks at early nineteenth-century debates and demonstrates how scientific botany came into conflict with the craft of floristry.

From competition to the foundational economy

For thirty years, the British economy has repeated the same old experiment of subjecting everything to competition and market because that is what works in the imagination of central government. This book demonstrates the repeated failure of the 30 year policy experiments by examining three sectors: broadband, food supply and retail banking. It argues against naïve metaphors of national disease, highlights the imaginary (or cosmology) that frames those metaphors, and draws out the implications of the experiment. Discussing the role of the experiments in post-1945 Britain, the book's overview on telecommunications, supermarkets and retail banking, reveals the limits of treatment by competition. Privatisation of fixed line telecoms in the UK delivered a system in which the private and public interests are only partially aligned in relation to provision of broadband. Individual supermarket chains may struggle but the four big UK supermarket chains are generally presented as exemplars because they have for a generation combined adequate profits with low price, choice and quality to deliver shareholder value. The many inquiries into retail banking after the financial crisis have concluded that the sector's problem was not enough competition. In a devolved experiment, socially-licensed policies and priorities vary from place to place and context to context. However, meaningful political engagement with the specifics in the economy will need to avoid losing sight of four principles: contestation, judgement, discussion, and tinkering. While others can be blamed for the failure of the experiments, the political responsibility for the ending and starting another is collectively peoples'.

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Bertrand Tavernier's substantial oeuvre could hardly be more varied. The filmmaker seeks to challenge himself in different ways with each film, refusing to be pigeonholed. This book commences with introductory remarks on the French filmmaker, Bertrand Tavernier, and his works. Tavernier has made twenty-one feature films, six documentaries, and several short films. Tavernier's oeuvre is unified by a recognizable constellation of ideas at its core. His Lyon, le regard intérieur, and his 'merveilleux lyonnais' ties filmmaking to the magic of childhood. The book chapter explores the significance of generations in Tavernier's films and in his career. The notion of generations has far-reaching implications in his work, ranging from literal families to successive 'waves' of filmmakers in the history of French cinema. The book examines this pervasive network of themes, reveals Tavernier's social, political, and affective worldview, and identifies him in terms of 'generational consciousness'. It discusses how L'Horloger de Saint-Paul presents itself as post-war, post-colonial, post-1968, and post-New Wave. L'Horloger de Saint-Paul suggests that the theme of conflicts between generations may ultimately be a red herring. Tavernier works instead to reconnect generations, showing that rebellion, solidarity, influence, and even memory are two-way streets. Tavernier's portraits of professional artists, focusing on Des enfants gâtés, Un dimanche à; la campagne, and Autour de minuit are also discussed. Daddy nostalgie is examined through the lens of melodrama, the nostalgia that comes into focus not only as an emotion but also as a historical dimension and a gateway to social engagement.

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Museums and the British imperial experience

Recent cultural studies have demonstrated the weakness of some of the fashionable theoretical positions adopted by scholars of imperialism in recent times. This book explores the diverse roles played by museums and their curators in moulding and representing the British imperial experience. The British Empire yielded much material for British museums, particularly in terms of ethnographic collections. The collection of essays demonstrates how individuals, their curatorial practices, and intellectual and political agendas influenced the development of a variety of museums across the globe. It suggests that Thomas Baines was deeply engaged with the public presentation, display and interpretation of material culture, and the dissemination of knowledge and information about the places he travelled. He introduced many people to the world beyond Norfolk. A discussion of visitor engagement with non-European material cultures in the provincial museum critiques the assumption of the pervasive nature of curatorial control of audience reception follows. The early 1900s, the New Zealand displays at world's fairs presented a vision of Maoriland, which often had direct Maori input. From its inception, the National Museum of Victoria performed the dual roles of research and public education. The book also discusses the collections at Australian War Memorial, Zanzibar Museum, and Sierra Leone's National Museum. The amateur enthusiasms and colonial museum policy in British West Africa are also highlighted. Finally, the book follows the journey of a single object, Tipu's Tiger, from India back to London.