Open Book Publishers - Winter Newsletter - February 2024

OBP Newsletter Feb 29, 2024
Claude Monet - The Magpie
Claude Monet - The Magpie. Public Domain.

Greetings and welcome to our Winter Newsletter!

Within this issue, you'll discover a wealth of updates, valuable insights, and fantastic new open access books. Prepare to immerse yourself in a realm of knowledge, innovation, and our forthcoming releases. Here's a glimpse of what awaits inside:

• Exciting Website Updates!
• Introducing the First Publication from the St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture Series
• Share your experience with the OA Books Toolkit
• Featured Blog: 'Open access book publishing: a series editor writes'
• Unveiling 'Prismatic Jane Eyre': A Video Series

Books, Resources and Reviews
• Featured Book
• New Open Access Publications
• Forthcoming Open Access Publications
• New Blogs and Resources
• Call for Proposals
• Latest Reviews

Exciting Website Updates!

We have recently completed a comprehensive update to our website! This update has made it more informative and visually engaging for our readership.

Here are some of the key updates our team has implemented:

  • Content Refresh: Our team has meticulously updated numerous pages that were previously outdated.
  • Enhanced Visuals: To improve user experience, our team has incorporated a variety of visuals, including diagrams, graphs, and logos, across various pages (see, for example, Our Vision). These additions not only make the content more visually appealing but also aid in conveying complex information effectively.
  • New Page - 'Our Reach': Our team has introduced a new page titled 'Our Reach' (accessible here) which meticulously showcases our readership statistics. This page serves as a testament to our impact and is prominently linked from our home page for easy access.
  • Improved Organization: To streamline content presentation, our team has relocated information regarding our readership statistics from the open software section to the newly created 'Our Reach' page. This change not only enhances the coherence of our website but also addresses previous concerns about content alignment.

We invite you all to explore the revamped website and discover the wealth of new information our team has meticulously curated. Take a moment to visit the updated site and delve into the latest content

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Introducing the First Publication from the St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture Series

We are delighted to unveil the inaugural book of the St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture series, a distinguished collaboration between the Centre for French History and Culture at the University of St Andrews and Open Book Publishers.

Titled Nouvelles études sur les lieux de spectacle de la première modernité and edited by Pauline Beaucé and Jeffrey M. Leichman, this groundbreaking work delves into the intricacies of performance venues during the early modern period.

The St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture series endeavors to enrich scholarly discourse surrounding the historical culture of the French-speaking world. Covering a diverse array of themes—from political and military history to literary culture—the series is committed to publishing concise yet illuminating monographs and studies.

Each title in the series undergoes rigorous peer review by our editorial board and external assessors, ensuring academic integrity and excellence. Available in both digital and hard copy formats, these publications will contribute significantly to our understanding of French history and culture.

Stay tuned for more groundbreaking publications from the St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture series!

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Share your experience with the OA Books Toolkit

Over three years after the launch of the OAPEN OA Books Toolkit, a round of redesign and enrichment with new, research-based content is taking place this year. To make sure that the Toolkit offer users what they need, we’re reaching out to you, as users of the Toolkit. Please help us to redesign by sharing your user experience in this survey. It will take less than 5 minutes to complete and the deadline for responses is Thursday 29 February. We look forward to your feedback!

Of course, please feel free to forward this survey to other users, such as your colleagues or authors. For more information, please contact Lotte van Aalten, Publisher Relations Manager at the OAPEN Foundation:

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Featured Blog: 'Open access book publishing: a series editor writes'

Dive into the latest insights on open-access publishing in 'Open access book publishing: a series editor writes', a new blog post written by Geoffrey Khan. Delve into the foundational principles behind the Cambridge Semitic Languages and Cultures series, its mission to democratize access to Semitic studies, and the transformative impact of open-access initiatives on academic scholarship and global knowledge exchange. Click the link to embark on a journey of scholarly exploration:

Geoffrey Khan, Regius Professor of Hebrew at University of Cambridge, is the series editor of Cambridge Semitic Languages and Cultures, an open access book series published by OBP. He first delivered this post as a talk at a seminar co-hosted by CRASSH and the University of Cambridge’s Research Culture Team on 28 November 2023: 'Should I consider publishing my monograph open access?'

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Unveiling 'Prismatic Jane Eyre': A Video Series

Dive into the world of literary exploration with our curated playlist featuring the authors of Prismatic Jane Eyre: Close-Reading a World Novel Across Languages.

Join the minds behind this book as they delve into the intricacies of their essays, offering a thought-provoking journey through the prism of languages and cultures that shape Charlotte Brontë's timeless classic. In this exclusive series of videos, each author prvides a unique perspective on their contribution to the collaborative work.

Click here to access now.

Prismatic Jane Eyre: Close-Reading a World Novel Across Languages is an Open Access title available to read and download at

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Featured Book: Now in OA!

Cover of 'Financing Investment in Times of High Public Debt' on a 3D image of a tablet, a phone, and a book.

Financing Investment in Times of High Public Debt: 2023 European Public Investment Outlook

edited by Floriana Cerniglia, Francesco Saraceno and Andrew Watt

We are thrilled to announce the release of the fourth installment in our 'European Public Investment Outlook' series. Tackling the pressing issue of financing essential investment amidst high levels of public debt, this book stands as a beacon of insight for governments grappling with this complex challenge across Europe.

Financing Investment in Times of High Public Debt: 2023 European Public Investment Outlook brings together a wealth of expertise from academics, researchers at public policy institutes, and international governance bodies. Through meticulous analysis and thoughtful proposals, the contributors illuminate the current landscape and offer feasible solutions to this critical dilemma.

This book offers a comprehensive examination of cross-continental policies and trends while delving into specific contexts in France, Italy, Germany, and Spain. Part II of the book ventures into the challenges of financing climate investments, the role of national promotional banks, EU budget reform, and evolving trends in tax progressivity.

A must-read for economists, policymakers, and anyone invested in European public policy, this book provides invaluable insights into the intricacies of EU governance and institutions. Whether you're seeking to implement effective policies or understand the evolving landscape of public finance, this Open Access title is an indispensable resource.

Don't miss out on this essential addition to the discourse on European public investment. Grab your copy today and embark on a journey towards informed decision-making and impactful policy implementation.


This book should be the go-to-book for anybody working on European Union fiscal rules and their potential interactions with public investment and the fight against global warming.

Prof Olivier Blanchard
Robert M. Solow Professor of Economics emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics

Europe's growth prospects hinge on balancing sustainable public finances with the need for greater investments in our common priorities, from the green and digital transitions to our competitiveness and security. This requires a reformed framework of fiscal rules and new tools and resources at EU level. The 2023 European Public Investment Outlook is the go-to text to understand the trends shaping this debate and explore possible solutions.

Paolo Gentiloni
EU Commissioner for the Economy


This Open Access title is available to read and download for free as well as to purchase in paperback, hardback and ePub at

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New Open Access Publications

In January and February we released 5 new Open Access titles:

Divine Style: Walt Whitman and the King James Bible by F. W. Dobbs-Allsopp

Dobbs-Allsopp, Professor of Old Testament at Princeton Theological Seminary, explicitly approaches Whitman from the perspective of a biblical scholar. Utilising his wealth of expertise in this field, he constructs a compelling, erudite and methodical argument for the King James Bible’s importance in the evolution of Whitman’s style – from his signature long lines to the prevalence of parallelism and tendency towards parataxis in his works.

Classical Music Futures: Practices of Innovation edited by Neil Thomas Smith, Peter Peters and Karoly Molina

This edited volume brings together contributions from a wide range of international academics and practitioners. It traces innovations within classical music practice, showing how these offer divergent visions for its future. The interdisciplinary contributions to the volume highlight the way contrasting ideas of the future can effect change in the present.

The Kingdom and the Qur’an: Translating the Holy Book of Islam in Saudi Arabia by Mykhaylo Yakubovych

This book presents a detailed analysis of the translation of the Qur’an in Saudi Arabia, the most important global actor in the promotion, production and dissemination of Qur’an translations. Mykhaylo Yakubovych provides a comprehensive historical overview of the debates surrounding the translatability of the Qur'an, as well as exploring the impact of the burgeoning translation and dissemination of the holy book upon Wahhabi and Salafi interpretations of Islam. Backed by meticulous research and drawing on a wealth of sources, this work illuminates an essential facet of global Islamic culture and scholarly discourse.

How Divine Images Became Art: Essays on the Rediscovery, Study and Collecting of Medieval Icons in the Belle Époque by Oleg Tarasov

How Divine Images Became Art tells the story of the parallel ‘discovery’ of Russian medieval art and of the Italian ‘primitives’ at the beginning of the twentieth century. While these two developments are well-known, they are usually studied in isolation. Tarasov’s study has the great merit of showing the connection between the art world in Russia and the West, and its impact in the cultural history of the continent in the pre-war period.

Tener Demasiado: Ensayos Filosóficos sobre el Limitarismo by Ingrid Robeyns, translated by Héctor Iñaki Larrínaga Márquez

Dive into thought-provoking philosophical insights on limitarianism, now accessible to Spanish-speaking readers worldwide. Explore the ethical considerations, societal implications, and philosophical inquiries presented in this groundbreaking work.

As always, these titles are freely available to read and download at

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Forthcoming Open Access Publications

Genetic Inroads into the Art of James Joyce by Hans Walter Gabler

This book is a treasure trove comprising core writings from Hans Walter Gabler‘s seminal work on James Joyce, spanning fifty years from the analysis of composition he undertook towards a critical text of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, through the Critical and Synoptic Edition of Ulysses, to Gabler‘s latest essays on (appropriately enough) Joyce’s sustained artistic innovation.

A Country of Shepherds: Cultural Stories of a Changing Mediterranean Landscape  by Kathleen Ann Myers

This book draws on the life stories told by shepherds, farmers, and their families in the Andalusian region in Spain to sketch out the landscapes, actions, and challenges of people who work in pastoralism. Their narratives highlight how local practices interact with regional and European communities and policies, and they help us see a broader role for extensive grazing practices and sustainability.

Eliza Orme’s Ambitions: Politics and the Law in Victorian London by Leslie Howsam

Why are some figures hidden from history? Eliza Orme, despite becoming the first woman in Britain to earn a university degree in Law in 1888, leading both a political organization and a labour investigation in 1892, and participating actively in the women’s suffrage movement into the early twentieth century, is one such figure.

(An)Archive: Childhood, Memory, and the Cold War edited by Mnemo ZIN

What was it like growing up during the Cold War? What can childhood memories tell us about state socialism and its aftermath? How can these intimate memories complicate history and redefine possible futures? These questions are at the heart of the (An)Archive: Childhood, Memory, and the Cold War. This edited collection stems from a collaboration between academics and artists who came together to collectively remember their own experiences of growing up on both sides of the ‘Iron Curtain’. Looking beyond official historical archives, the book gathers memories that have been erased or forgotten, delegitimized or essentialized, or, at best, reinterpreted nostalgically within the dominant frameworks of the East-West divide. And it reassembles and (re)stores these childhood memories in a form of an ‘anarchive’: a site for merging, mixing, connecting, but also juxtaposing personal experiences, public memory, political rhetoric, places, times, and artifacts. Collectively, these acts and arts of collective remembering tell about possible futures―and the past’s futures―what life during the Cold War might have been but also what it has become.

Music and the Making of Modern Japan: Joining the Global Concert by Margaret Mehl

In only 50 years, from the 1870s to the early 1920s, Japanese people laid the foundations for the country’s post-war rise as a musical as well as an economic power. Meanwhile, new types of popular song, fuelled by the growing global record industry, successfully blended inspiration from the West with musical characteristics perceived as Japanese.

To find out more about this and other forthcoming titles visit:

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Blogs and Resources

[blog post] A Bible Scholar Reads Whitman by F. W. Dobbs-Allsopp

[blog post] The trials of migrant academics: The ‘Outsider Within’ at academic conferences by Ladan Rahbari and Olga Burlyuk

[article] Miners’ Strike 40th anniversary Political theatre and the Miners’ Strike - DAWN EVANS recommends the memoir of A39, the remarkable Cornish political theatre troupe

[article] The best books on accounting for M&A by Geoff Meeks

[article] Why Are Acquiring Companies So Reluctant to Amortise Purchased Goodwill? by Geoff Meeks

[video] Book Launch: 'Health Care in the Information Society', by David Ingram, at openEHR NL 2023

[video] 'The Predatory Paradox' - Online Book Launch

[podcast] Teaching in Higher Education Podcast

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Call for Proposals

We have various Open Access series all of which are open for proposals, so feel free to get in touch if you or someone you know is interested in submitting a proposal!

Global Communications

Global Communicationsis a book series that looks beyond national borders to examine current transformations in public communication, journalism and media. Special focus is given on regions other than Western Europe and North America, which have received the bulk of scholarly attention until now.

St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture

St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture, a successful series published by the Centre for French History and Culture at the University of St Andrews since 2010 and now in collaboration with Open Book Publishers, aims to enhance scholarly understanding of the historical culture of the French-speaking world. This series covers the full span of historical themes relating to France: from political history, through military/naval, diplomatic, religious, social, financial, cultural and intellectual history, art and architectural history, to literary culture.

Studies on Mathematics Education and Society

This book seriespublishes high-quality monographs, edited volumes, handbooks and formally innovative books which explore the relationships between mathematics education and society. The series advances scholarship in mathematics education by bringing multiple disciplinary perspectives to the study of contemporary predicaments of the cultural, social, political, economic and ethical contexts of mathematics education in a range of different contexts around the globe.

The Global Qur'an

The Global Qur’an is a new book series that looks at Muslim engagement with the Qur’an in a global perspective. Scholars interested in publishing work in this series and submitting their monographs and/or edited collections should contact the General Editor, Johanna Pink. If you wish to submit a contribution, please read and download the submission guidelines here.

The Medieval Text Consortium Series

The Series is created by an association of leading scholars aimed at making works of medieval philosophy available to a wider audience. The Series' goal is to publish peer-reviewed texts across all of Western thought between antiquity and modernity, both in their original languages and in English translation. Find out more here.

Applied Theatre Praxis

This series publishes works of practitioner-researchers who use their rehearsal rooms as "labs”; spaces in which theories are generated and experimented with before being implemented in vulnerable contexts. Find out more here.

Digital Humanities

Overseen by an international board of experts, our Digital Humanities Series: Knowledge, Thought and Practice is dedicated to the exploration of these changes by scholars across disciplines. Books in this Series present cutting-edge research that investigate the links between the digital and other disciplines paving the ways for further investigations and applications that take advantage of new digital media to present knowledge in new ways. Proposals in any area of the Digital Humanities are invited. We welcome proposals for new books in this series. Please do not hesitate to contact us ( if you would like to discuss a publishing proposal and ways we might work together to best realise it.

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Latest Reviews

William Moorcroft, Potter: Individuality by Design by Jonathan Mallinson

This book is a fitting tribute to the life and work of William Moorcroft (1872-1945), one of the most celebrated and successful artist potters of his time.   […] Mallinson draws on extensive primary sources throughout the book, combining Moorcroft’s personal archive of diaries, notebooks and letters with company minutes and ledgers to give a fascinating insight into the relationships and financial realities involved in running a small pottery in early 20th-century Britain.   Authorship, recognition and reputation are recurring themes presented through the lens of contemporary press coverage and reviews.   Moorcroft’s project is also helpfully placed in context with the shifting debates in art and design and the work of other makers, from Pilkington’s and Howson Taylor to Leach and Staite Murray.   This scholarly, detailed approach gives a strong impression of Moorcroft’s pioneering spirit […].

Florence Tyler
Newsletter of The Decorative Arts Society, vol. 130, 2024.

Landscapes of Investigation: Contributions to Critical Mathematics Education, edited by Miriam Godoy Penteado and Ole Skovsmose

This book arises out of a body of work that was explicitly pushing back on the Exercise paradigm, i.e., it is pushing back on perspectives such as the Acquisition metaphor wherein “knowledge” is something objectively measurable and individually held which is accrued through exercising the brain. Instead, the metaphor of “Landscapes” views learning as inherently complex, dialogic (collectivist), and cultural. [...] Landscapes are not objects. Landscapes aren’t even nouns. Landscapes are verbs: Living things, in a constant state of happening. [...] This book is not the only work to embrace the metaphor of Landscapes, but it is a fantastic collection of dialogically constructed work that centers this liberatory metaphor. [...] That this book is written and constructed in a way that will invite both newcomers and longstanding users of this metaphor to gain insight and push their understanding further speaks well to the care the Authors took in its construction.

David M. Bowers
"Book Review: Landscapes of Investigation:  Contributions to Critical Mathematics Education (2022) (M. G. Penteado & O. Skovsmose, Eds.)". Journal for Theoretical & Marginal Mathematics Education, vol. 2, no. 1, 2023. doi:10.5281/zenodo.10440243

Technology, Media Literacy, and the Human Subject: A Posthuman Approach by Richard S. Lewis

By studying the complex and multifaceted relationships that people have with media technology, this book makes a significant contribution to the area of media studies. This book is an invaluable tool for researchers, academics, and students working on the subject because it draws on several different fields and creates a new framework and instrument [...] Despite the subject matter being broadened by the sheer number of disciplines used, the author does a commendable job of condensing the most relevant concepts into a meaningful body of work. Media ecology, post-humanism, complexity theory, and post-phenomenology are all properly employed in the crafting of the instrument used by the author to draw his conclusions [...] Academics in media and communication studies, philosophy of technology, and post-humanities can all find value in the arguments posed by Lewis here. The author’s style and thorough treatment of the topic add further credibility to the argument presented, making it effective in convincing readers of its validity. Alternatively, such professionals can improve their competencies by leveraging this information into actionable insight to be applied in the frontline.

Hanan Elsayed
Information, Communication & Society, 2023. doi:10.1080/1369118X.2023.2252480

Auld Lang Syne: A Song and its Culture by Morag Josephine Grant

In this interesting book - which employs diverse sources of evidence - Morag Grant examines the song in its pre- and post-Burns contexts, and in some of its international guises (including its German reception), bringing her discussion up to the modern day. [...]This is an important study for scholars of oral transmission, as well as for those interested in the transmission of Scottish culture more generally, and Morag Grant is to be congratulated on the detailed research and analysis which underpin this scholarly yet accessible book.

Katherine Campbell
Scottish Studies, vol. 40, 2024.

Life, Re-Scaled: The Biological Imagination in Twenty-First-Century Literature and Performance edited by Liliane Campos and Pierre-Louis Patoine

Life, Re-Scaled provides much-needed rigorous analyses of the affective and aesthetic potentials of literature and performance to engage with, and attend to, the heterogenous scales of life across microbiological and planetary scales [...] What is particularly salient about Life, Re-Scaled is that it includes methodologies in which science and art are not domains that merely influence each other: the contributors explore the “cross-currents” and “cross fertilizing of imaginaries” across contemporary artistic work, cultural representational popularizations of the life sciences, and philosophy.

Dr Sarah Hopfinger
Performing Arts Journal, 2024. doi:10.1162/pajj_r_00704

Laura Rodríguez

Laura Rodríguez holds an MPhil in Medieval Literature at the University of Cambridge. Her research interests include medieval pastoral care, women's studies, religious history, and cycle drama.