New: The Cold War: Global Perspectives on East-West Tensions, 1945-1991

Cold War - Readex - frontpageThanks to colleagues in the Social Science Library, modern historians now have access to The Cold War: Global Perspectives on East-West Tensions, 1945-1991.

This resource is a digital archive of international primary source documents on the Cold War, spanning five decades, and will be of interest to anyone researching 20th-century global studies.

Cold War - Readex - screenshot

The sources seem to be a selection of FBIS (Foreign Broadcast Information Service Daily Reports) documents, i.e. these are CIA monitored, recorded, and translated coverage of the Cold War in foreign media and government publications. They covers newspapers, magazines, radio broadcasts, television broadcasts, books, government reports, and more.

If you are looking for similar English-language Cold War sources, you might also be interested in…

The global reach of the Bibliography of British and Irish History

[re-blogged from http://blog.history.ac.uk/2016/07/the-global-reach-of-the-bibliography-of-british-and-irish-history/ with kind permission of Sara Charles, Editorial Assistant, Bibliography of British and Irish History.]

“For this blog post, we wanted to present the global scope of the Bibliography.  Despite being called the Bibliography of British and Irish History, material covering the rest of the world makes up a significant proportion of our resources. Using data visualization tools, we mapped the number of resources available onto a global frame using the figures from the latest update in June 2016 and the place names listed.

The expansion of the British Empire explains the large amount of resources concerning North America, the Indian Subcontinent, Australia, South Africa, but other less obvious areas also feature prominently. Russia has 2,257 resources, China has 1,674, and Japan 876.

As expected, European relations account for a large chunk of material, with France being the highest European candidate with 9,337 resources, followed by Germany (5,222), Italy (2,808), and Spain (2,384). Interestingly, these figures highlight the close links that Britain and Ireland have had with the continent, and shows that our political and cultural relationship with Europe has continuously shaped our nation, as part of a wider historical legacy.

The resources are as diverse thematically as they are geographically; a brief search on ‘Crete’ reveals not just a selection of resources on the World War II campaign such as The Ariadne objective : the underground war to rescue Crete from the Nazis, but The man who deciphered linear B : the story of Michael Ventrisand Did Greek wine became Port? Or why institutional interventions matter (c. 1350-1780), an article exploring Cretan wine in medieval England.

Even more intriguing are the countries who have merely one resource to their name, Belarus has scraped in with the cosily titled Prince Potemkin and the Benthams, Mali has one resource called Barrow’s Boysa book about exploration in the early nineteenth century, and Christmas Island gets some recognition in British imperialism and Australian mini-imperialism in the 1950s

The visual representations of our resources really highlights the global reach of the BBIH, please click on the interactive links above to explore the full range of material.

Sara Charles, Editorial Assistant, Bibliography of British and Irish History.


Bibliography of British and Irish History is available to all staff and students of Oxford University and readers registered with Bodleian Libraries. It can be access from SOLO and Databases A-Z.BBIH logo

Trial until 17 June: Missions and Missionaries Around the World, 1611 – 1922

I am pleased to announce a trial of Missions and Missionaries Around the World, 1611 – 1922 which is now available to Oxford users via SOLO or OxLIP+.

Offering more than 2,000 monographs, this resource features missionary outreach to countries including India, China, Guyana, Tahiti, and the Marquesas Islands.

Prominent authors include Morris Officer, Robert E. Speer, and Adrien Launay. Many Christian traditions are featured in the collection, including the Catholic Church, Presbyterian Church (USA), Lutheran Church, and Orthodox Church.

The sources tell the stories of various Christian missions and missionaries throughout the world. It features foreign missions to over 50 countries and domestic missions within North America and Europe, with focus given to the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The interface will look familiar to those using Historical Abstracts. In fact, this resource is cross-searchable with other EBSCO databases, such as Historical Abstracts, America: History & Life and ATLA.

Missions and Missionaries Around the World 1611-1922

Once you have found a relevant citation and decide to look at the full-text, you can browse through the publication but also use the document map to locate the pages where your keyword is mentioned.

Missions and Missionaries Around the World 1611-1922 - page

Feedback to isabel.holowaty@bodleian.ox.ac.uk or hilla.wait@bodleian.ox.ac.uk.

More titles on Cambridge Histories Online available: Cambridge World History and many more

CHO - WWII coverI’m pleased to report that Oxford readers can now access more titles in the online Cambridge Histories Online portal. The newly added ebooks of interest to historians are:

  • The Cambridge History of Medieval Philosophy (2 vols.)
  • The Cambridge History of Witchcraft and Magic in the West
  • The Cambridge History of the Second World War (3 vols.)
  • The Cambridge Economic History of Australia
  • The Cambridge History of Capitalism (2 vols.)
  • The Cambridge History of China, Volume 5 (part 2) & Volume 9 (part 2)
  • The Cambridge History of Scandinavia (to be complete in 2 vols.)
  • The Cambridge World History (to be complete in 9 vols.)

The catalogue records for these ebooks will appear in SOLO in due course. In the meantime you can find these by searching Cambridge Histories Online in SOLO.

New: International Historical Statistics 1750-2010

IHS coverLooking for online historical statistics? Oxford users now have online access to the electronic International Historical Statistics 1750-2010 via SOLO and OxLIP+.

The International Historical Statistics (IHS) series is a renowned and important resource providing access to statistics covering a wide range of socio-economic topics. It is a collection of data sets taken from hundreds of disparate primary sources, including both official national and international abstracts dating back to 1750. This edition provides updated statistics to 2010 – covering 260 years and cover Europe, The Americas, but also Africa, Asia and Oceania. There are vital statistics and statistics for population, labour force, agriculture, industry, external trade, transport and communications, finance, prices, education, and national accounts. Statistical analysis can be conducted across both time and geopolitical boundaries. Data tables can be downloaded as ePDFs and/or Excel files.

IHS snippet
The collection is an interdisciplinary resource. It will be of interest to academics, researchers and students in sociology, politics, history, economics, business, environment, international relations, geography and statistical studies.

Other online historical statistics resources:

If you are missing your favourite website for historical statistics, then let me know.

Trial until 11 February: Global Commodities: Trade, Exploration and Cultural Exchange

Oxford users are now invited to trial Global Commodities: Trade, Exploration and Cultural Exchange until 11 February.Global commodities - HOME

Global Commodities is an online resource useful for economic and trade history of covering the early modern period to 20th century . It is relevant for world history, economic and trade history, social history, discovery and exploration, history of consumption and life style, etc.

It includes wide-ranging sources:

  • Records of individual traders, showing patterns of consumption for a range of commodities over time.
  • Business Accounts and Records of both small and large companies from an early fur trapper to a major chocolate manufacturer.
  • Dock Accounts describing the development of a major port from 1755 to 1960.
  • Bills of Entry for major ports which show changing patterns of trade between 1820 and 1939.
  • 17th and 18th century Trade Returns and Prices Current for key markets.
  • Material on the discovery and exploitation of commodities in Asia, Africa and the Americas from 1492 to 2000.
  • Government records concerning taxation, economic development and colonial business schemes.
  • Exhibition Catalogues.
  • Statistical sources documenting world trade; and a vast range of visual material including advertising and packaging, photographs, paintings and prints.

For each commodity there is a vast array of historical material documenting their origins, transportation, consumption and impact on society. Also, each commodity is documented through a wide range of manuscript materials, maps, posters, paintings, photographs, ephemera, objects and rare books so that the student can explore the origins of the commodity, their first uses, the trade that developed and the ways in which these items were marketed.

The trial runs until 11 February. Please leave any comments on  History databases desiderata & trials or email Isabel Holowaty, History Librarian.

New in Oxford eJournals: Journal of History and Cultures

The following free online journal has been added to Oxford eJournals and SOLO:

Journal of History and Cultures, vol. 1 (1), Sept 2012-. ISSN: 2051-221x

Journal of History and Cultures (JHAC) is ” a peer-reviewed online journal dedicated to pioneering new research in history and cultures. Drawing on theJournal of History and Cultures latest historical, cultural, political, social, and theoretical analytical research, JHAC’s overarching purpose is to foster lively and productive academic debate.

The emphasis on a wide variety of disciplines and subject matter creates a mutually enriching sphere for the interchange of perspectives and ideas. JHAC has a broad scope in both geographic and chronological terms, presenting studies with a range of local, regional, national and global foci from the medieval to contemporary era. This provides the opportunity for research from global contributors to enter a dialogue with the readership in the form of reviews, letters and an online discussion forum.” From JHAC’s Mission Statement.

You can follow JHAC on Twitter  @UoBJHAC.