Category Archives: Authors

The first title in our Universal Reform series is just published

Posted by Hattie Wilson, Senior Marketing Executive

Transnational Networks and Cross-Religious Exchange in the Seventeenth-Century Mediterranean and Atlantic WorldsWe are delighted to announce that our new series, Universal Reform: Studies in Intellectual History, 1550-1700 has just published its first title. Transnational Networks and Cross-Religious Exchange in Seventeenth-Century Mediterranean and Atlantic Worlds by Brandon Marriott examines the claim by Antonio de Montezinos in 1644 that he had discovered the Lost Tribes of Israel in the jungles of South America, and how this news spread across Europe and the Ottoman Empire. Marriott reveals the importance of early-modern crises, diasporas and newsgathering networks in generating eschatological constructs and transforming them through a process of intercultural dissemination into complex new hybrid religious conceptions and identities.

The Universal Reform series, edited by Howard Hotson and Vladimír Urbánek, examines the attempts by a wide variety of Post-Reformation intellectuals to extend the reforming impulse from the spheres of church and theology to many different areas of life and thought.

Within these ambitious reforming projects, impulses originating in the Reformation mixed inextricably with projects emerging from the late-Renaissance and with the ongoing transformations of communications, education, art, literature, science, medicine, and philosophy.  Although specialised literatures exist to study these individual developments, they do not comfortably accommodate studies of how these components were sometimes brought together in the service of wider reforms. By providing a natural home for fresh research uncomfortably accommodated within Renaissance studies, Reformation studies, and the histories of science, medicine, philosophy, and education, Universal Reform pursues a more synoptic understanding of individuals, movements, and networks pursuing further and more general reform by bringing together studies rooted in all of these sub-disciplinary historiographies.

If you are interested in submitting a proposal for the Universal Reform series, please contact the publisher, Thomas Gray

Guest Post from Roger Cotterrell

Posted by Luana Life, Marketing Coordinator

Roger CotterrellRoger Cotterrell, Professor of Legal Theory at Queen Mary, University of London, UK, provides today’s guest blog. He is the author of Law, Culture and Society: Legal Ideas in the Mirror of Social Theory — an Editor’s Choice title in our Law list. The following post includes background information about the book and his research motivations, thoughts, and experiences that helped shape the volume’s success and contribution to the field.

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Law culture and societyLaw, Culture and Society originated in a series of essays written over an eight year period. But it was intended as far more than just a collection of linked papers. I saw all of the studies that contributed to it as part of a single, tightly integrated project, even if one with several branches. I wanted to show through this book what I had come to see as a necessary new perspective on the study of law in society. Since I had long been interested in legal theory and committed to studying law from a sociological perspective, the book was a kind of first summation of what I had gradually worked out as the most productive way to apply this sociological outlook in a theoretically consistent way in interpreting legal ideas. So, it was subtitled ‘legal ideas in the mirror of social theory’. As in much of my work, a guiding motivation was to show the relevance of sociological insights for juristic, doctrinal studies of law – the kinds of studies with which lawyers and law students are most familiar.

Looking back now, a decade after the book’s original publication, I can see two factors as especially important in determining the form that Law, Culture and Society took. The first was that in the years leading up to its publication I had become increasingly interested in comparative legal studies – an area of legal scholarship that throughout its development has been more open than most to making alliances with the social sciences. The strong links I had developed with comparative lawyers encouraged me to consider more carefully how sociological perspectives could aid them, and to ask how the whole enterprise of comparative law could acquire more solid theoretical foundations by drawing on ideas from social theory. So, the book was written partly to address students of comparative law.

It seemed obvious that comparative legal studies would become more important in a globalising world. Pressures to harmonise law across national boundaries were becoming more intense. But at the same time ‘local’ cultures – often reflecting particular traditions, values and allegiances – clearly sought to resist some of these harmonising pressures and called on law to express their distinctiveness. There seemed to be a dual movement focused on law: it must seek the efficiency of similarity produced through harmonisation but it must also appreciate cultural difference. As a consequence, ‘culture’ would have to become a very important focus of attention for legal scholars.

Sociology and anthropology had already developed many ideas about the nature of culture that deserved attention. However, when I came to examine carefully the ideas about ‘legal culture’ that were current in socio-legal studies I felt they lacked rigour. So an important part of my project, reflected in Law, Culture and Society, was to find a way of thinking about culture that could be conceptually defensible, consistent and systematic, and practically relevant for legal analysis as well as for social scientific inquiries about law.

A second main factor also shaped the book’s form. I had come to feel that the old agenda of socio-legal studies – to study the interaction between ‘law’ and ‘society’ – was becoming exhausted. Socio-legal scholars had tended to treat ‘society’ as referring to national societies and ‘law’ as the law of nation states. But social research showed that social and economic relationships were increasingly transnational and international, and law in practice was less and less confined to national law. Law, Culture and Society introduces and develops the idea of communal networks that can cross nation state boundaries, and it suggests that different kinds of communal relationship typically pose different legal problems and present different regulatory needs. Equally, the diversity of communal networks within national societies is a matter of great juristic relevance. So, the book tries to displace the old fixation with national societies as law’s sole concern in favour of a much more open view of communal networks – national, intra-national and transnational.

I had not been thinking of culture when I first wrote about communal networks. However, I came to think that culture could be best understood in terms of them. It could be seen as the bonds that allow these various networks to exist. So, the book’s approach was intended to suggest new agendas for social study of law. I used it to reconsider the possibilities for ‘transplanting’ law from one cultural environment to another, as well as the nature of authority in comparative law, and the multifaceted character of culture as a concern for law. More broadly, I claimed that the law-and-community approach could help to clarify one of the most basic foci of legal analysis – the idea of responsibility.

Since the book appeared I have further developed its approach, which has also been used by other scholars working in diverse fields. Today we can at least see clearly that social studies of law are becoming ever more important and that their character is changing as law becomes more transnational and international, and as networks of socio-economic relations become ever more varied, diverse and intricate within and across national boundaries. Socio-legal researchers and socially-aware lawyers surely have plenty of work to do and I hope that Law, Culture and Society can still prove helpful.

Roger Cotterrell

June 22nd 2015

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Examination Copies of this title are available on a 60 day trial basis for lecturers considering course adoption. To request a copy of a book, fill out the online inspection/examination form.

Inspiring a Medico-Legal Revolution: Essays in Honour of Sheila McLean

Posted by Sarah Stilwell, Senior Marketing Executive

Sheila McLean photoSheila McLean has been associated with Ashgate since 1980 and we were absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to publish this book in her honour. The book itself is a fitting and eloquent tribute to Sheila’s remarkable career and role in the development of medico-legal studies as an academic subject. Alison Kirk, publisher of Ashgate’s law list, who was present at the dinner organised by Sheila’s colleagues in her honour, concluded her appreciation with the words: ‘It was an absolute pleasure working with Sheila and we will miss her. Ashgate would like to thank her for all her hard work both as an author and series editor. We wish her all the very best for a well-deserved, long and happy retirement’.

Inspiring a medico-legal revolution Sheila McleanPublished this month, Inspiring a Medico-Legal Revolution: Essays in Honour of Sheila McLean is edited by Pamela Ferguson, University of Dundee, UK and Graeme Laurie, University of Edinburgh, UK

‘Inspiring a Medico-Legal Revolution epitomizes more than just its contents. It reflects the career and research of Sheila McLean herself. All parts of the book are provocative and insightful, addressing a wide range of controversial topics. It is rare that so many recognized legal scholars together contribute to a book that spans legal issues at the beginning of life, in medical care, professional liability, as well as regulatory and end of life issues. But then, how else to honour such an esteemed colleague? Readers will be all the more enriched.’  Bartha Maria Knoppers, McGill University, Canada

‘This collection of essays is a fitting endorsement of the contributions to the field that Professor Sheila McLean has made. This is an inspiring collection which will provide a lasting tribute to her work.’   Jane Kaye, University of Oxford, UK

‘This is a true celebration of Sheila McLean’s free and indomitable spirit. The impressive range and richness of the essays show her enduring influence as an academic pioneer, a warm mentor and friend, a dedicated internationalist, and a tireless gadfly in the bodies of institutionalised medicine and law.’   Alastair V. Campbell, National University of Singapore

Click here for more information on books published by Ashgate in the field of medical law

Click here for more information on Sheila McLean’s academic and professional appointments

BIALL Life Membership Award 2015 awarded to Loyita Worley

Posted by Helen Moore, Marketing Manager

The BIALL Life Membership Award 2015 has been awarded to Loyita Worley, Director of EMEA Library Operations, Reed Smith.

The British and Irish Association of Law Librarian’s (BIALL) awarded the BIALL Life Membership Award 2015 to Loyita Worley at the BIALL Annual Dinner, which took place in the Hilton Brighton Metropole on 12 June 2015.

This is an award that is bestowed on current BIALL members who have had active and distinguished careers within Law Librarianship, and who have been substantially involved with BIALL. Loyita has been active in BIALL for 30 years and has stayed with the same law firm, albeit in different guises, for almost as long. She has held the roles of Membership Secretary, Council Member and in 1999 Chair of BIALL (the former term for “President”), the first member from a law firm to be elected to this office.

BIALL handbook of legal information managementLoyita edited the first edition of the BIALL Handbook of Legal Information Management published in 2006 and stepped in again more recently to take over as editor of the 2nd edition as well as contributing one of the chapters.

It was with great pleasure that BIALL president Marianne Barber presented Loyita with the Life Membership Award.

The University of Google – a guest podcast by Tara Brabazon

Posted by David Cota, Senior Marketing Coordinator

The university of googleThe University of Google is a sad book, it is an angry book, but it is a book that stands for something. It stands for commitment to scholarship.’ Tara Brabazon

In this podcast Tara Brabazon discusses her 2007 book The University of Google and the experiences that lead her to write it, the contribution it has had to its field and how it has changed her life.

The University of Google was identified by our editors as having played a significant part in the building and reputation of our publishing programme. See more Editors’ Choices here.

Tara Brabazon is Professor of Education and Head of the School of Teacher Education, Charles Sturt University, Australia and has authored several Ashgate titles, Digital Dieting – From Information Obesity to Intellectual Fitness (2013) Thinking Popular Culture (2008), and From Revolution to Revelation (2005).

The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental Music: The Interviews

Posted by Maxine Cook, Marketing Assistant

James Saunders has uploaded his interview with Evan Parker. This is the final interview from this series.

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Interview with Evan Parker

Known for his fluid development of multiphonic aggregates to produce a constantly changing patterning, Evan Parker has evolved an instantly recognizable sound. Despite the flux of the music’s surface, he talks of his recent exploration of limited interval types to underpin his improvisations, emphasizing the reduced nature of his approach. Here practise and memorization are important, allowing the development of sequence-building methods which inform subsequent performances. The impact of group work is also of note: specific developments in his technique arose from the necessity of responding to the musicians around him, leading to the possibility of working as a soloist. Recently, his exploratory work with different groupings of musicians, taking on ‘the specifics of time and space’, has allowed the further development of the research ethos that lies at the heart of improvisation. Finding new things in new or old situations is central to experimentation. There are moments which leave an indelible mark on your memory, and hearing Parker perform live for the first time was, for me, one of these. At the beginning of a workshop in Huddersfield whilst I was a student, he talked a little about what he did, and then played for five minutes: I was completely unprepared for the complexity of the sound, and the shape of the resultant performance, and it has stayed with me since then.

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The interview was conducted by email between 24 February 2007 – 4 August 2008

The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental MusicRead the full interview here.

All the interviews from James Saunders can be found in The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental Music.

The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental Music: The Interviews

Posted by Maxine Cook, Marketing Assistant

James Saunders has uploaded his interview with Bernhard Günter.

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Interview with Bernhard Günter:

Meticulous placement and balancing of sound is readily apparent in Bernhard Günter’s work, whether electro-acoustically composed or, more recently, improvised. Whilst he points out its wide dynamic range, it is essentially a quiet music, one which seeks to draw us in as listeners. The body of work for which he is perhaps best known – the series of recordings beginning with his 1993 release Un peu de neige salie – explores a reduced palette of glitch sounds, working with highly detailed textures which have an innate complexity. Günter’s approach foregrounds aspects of sounds that otherwise go unnoticed, whether due to existing on the border of sound and silence, or their perceived ancillary status as musical material. Whilst he is at pains to point out that he does not consider his music experimental, given it is ostensibly result rather than process oriented, this particular concern has much in common with other practitioners in the field. His processing of sampled sounds strips them of their more conventional meanings, allowing him to work more closely with them as abstract sonic materials. His recent improvisation projects have continued to explore this reduced soundworld, working first with Mark Wastell and Graham Halliwell as +minus, and later with Gary Smith as Klangstaub. Here too a slow, breath-paced layering of gradually changing drones allows the material’s detail to emerge over time.

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The interview was conducted by email between 2 January – 10 February 2004, with the postscript being added in August 2008.

The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental MusicRead the full interview here.

All the interviews from James Saunders can be found in The Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental Music.